Rev. biol. mar. oceanogr. 48(2): 227-234


Antioxidant defenses and lipid peroxidation in two Lithodes species from South Atlantic during summer

M. Carolina Romero1, Natasha Schvezov1, M. Paula Sotelano1, Mariano J. Diez1, Olga Florentin1, Federico Tapella1 & Gustavo A. Lovrich1

1Centro Austral de Investigaciones Científicas (CADIC) - CONICET, Houssay 200, V9410CAB Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

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In Southern South America Lithodes santolla and L. confundens are the most valuable king crabs species, specially due to their high yields and their high acceptance in the markets. From a physiological point of view, reactive oxygen species (ROS) are continuously produced as by-products of cell respiration. These ROS are transformed into less toxic metabolites by antioxidant enzymes. The aim of the present study was to determine in Lithodes santolla (from San Jorge Gulf) and L. confundens (from Atlantic coast of Tierra del Fuego) the baseline status of both antioxidant enzyme activity and lipid peroxidation levels. Activities of catalase (CAT), glutathione-S-transferase (GST), as well as lipid peroxidation were measured in the muscle, gills and hepatopancreas. Both species showed antioxidant enzyme activities, and the gills were the organs with the highest CAT enzyme activities. CAT and GST activities were higher in muscle and gills, respectively, in L. confundens compared with L. santolla, whereas lipid peroxidation was low in both organs. These differences between both species suggest that L. confundens is more capable to afford oxidative stress than L. santolla, which may be a response to the common occurrence of L. confundens at the intertidal during the spring low tides. Differences in the analysed parameters could be attributed to intrinsic adaptation features of each king crab species and/or to environmental conditions of each particular study area. Furthermore, our results showed that parameters as CAT, GST and lipid peroxidation could be proposed as biomarkers of oxidative stress in Lithodes santolla and L. confundens.

Key words:  Enzymatic activity, reactive oxygen species, king crabs