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Ocean acidification from CO2 emissions will cause physiological impairment to jumbo squid
Date:12/15/2008

corals and shelled mollusks, but the study by Seibel and Rosa is one of the first to show a direct physiological effect in a non-calcifying species.

The scientists speculate that the squids may eventually migrate to more northern climes where lower temperatures would reduce oxygen demand and relieve them from CO2 and oxygen stress. While it is possible, they say, that the squids could adjust their physiology over time to accommodate the changing environment, jumbo squids have among the highest oxygen demands of any animal on the planet and are thus fairly constrained in how they can respond.

"We believe it is the blood that is sensitive to high CO2 and low pH," Seibel said. "This sensitivity allows the squids to off-load oxygen more effectively to muscle tissues, but would prevent the squid from acquiring oxygen across the gills from seawater that is high in CO2."

While many other squid and octopus species have oxygen transport systems that are equally sensitive to pH, few have such high oxygen demand coupled with large body size and low environmental oxygen. Therefore the scientists believe that their study results should not be extrapolated to other marine animals.


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Contact: Todd McLeish
tmcleish@uri.edu
401-874-7892
University of Rhode Island
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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