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Menthol-induced bleaching rapidly and effectively provides experimental aposymbiotic sea anemones (Aiptasia sp.) for symbiosis investigations Public Deposited

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https://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/articles/sb397d53r

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Abstract
  • Experimental manipulation of the symbiosis between cnidarians and photosynthetic dinoflagellates (Symbiodinium spp.) is crucial to advancing the understanding of the cellular mechanisms involved in host-symbiont interactions, and overall coral reef ecology. The anemone Aiptasia sp. is a model for cnidarian-dinoflagellate symbiosis, and notably it can be rendered aposymbiotic (i.e. dinoflagellate-free) and re-infected with a range of Symbiodinium types. Various methods exist for generating aposymbiotic hosts; however, they can be hugely time consuming and not wholly effective. Here, we optimise a method using menthol for production of aposymbiotic Aiptasia. The menthol treatment produced aposymbiotic hosts within just 4 weeks (97-100% symbiont loss), and the condition was maintained long after treatment when anemones were held under a standard light: dark cycle. The ability of Aiptasia to form a stable symbiosis appeared to be unaffected by menthol exposure, as demonstrated by successful re-establishment of the symbiosis when anemones were experimentally re-infected. Furthermore, there was no significant impact on photosynthetic or respiratory performance of re-infected anemones.
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  • Matthews, J. L., Sproles, A. E., Oakley, C. A., Grossman, A. R., Weis, V. M., & Davy, S. K. (2016). Menthol-induced bleaching rapidly and effectively provides experimental aposymbiotic sea anemones (Aiptasia sp.) for symbiosis investigations. Journal of Experimental Biology, 219(3), 306-310. doi:10.1242/jeb.128934
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  • 219
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  • 3
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  • This work was supported by a grant from the Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Fund (grant no. 1202 awarded to S.K.D., A.R.G. and V.M.W.).
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