The majority of benthic marine invertebrates have a complex life cycle, during which the pelagic larvae select a suitable substrate, attach to it, and then metamorphose into benthic adults. Anthropogenic ocean acidification (OA) is postulated to affect larval metamorphic success through an altered protein expression pattern (proteome structure) and post-translational modifications. To test this hypothesis, larvae of an economically and ecologically important barnacle species Balanus amphitrite, were cultured from nauplius to the cyprid stage in the present (control) and in the projected elevated concentrations of CO(2) for the year 2100 (the OA treatment). Cyprid response to OA was analyzed at the total proteome level as well as two protein post-translational modification (phosphorylation and glycosylation) levels using a 2-DE based proteomic approach. The cyprid proteome showed OA-driven changes. Proteins that were differentially up or down regulated by OA come from three major groups, namely those related to energy-metabolism, respiration, and molecular chaperones, illustrating a potential strategy that the barnacle larvae may employ to tolerate OA stress. The differentially expressed proteins were tentatively identified as OA-responsive, effectively creating unique protein expression signatures for OA scenario of 2100. This study showed the promise of using a sentinel and non-model species to examine the impact of OA at the proteome level.
Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.