Osmoregulation is an example of an organism maintaining homeostasis. More specifically, osmoregulation involves an animal regulating osmotic pressure, or its fluid content. Brine shrimp, Artemia, use osmoregulation to regulate the saline levels of fluid within their body. Because brine shrimps live in seawater, an environment with a high saline concentration, they must actively excrete excess salt. Brine Shrimps use metepipodites as the location of the ion pump which secretes sodium. This is an active transport of ions because it is moving against the gradient, a higher salt content outside the body. The two following studies describe the environmental conditions ideal for brine shrimp and the possible genetic explanation for the osmoregulation of brine shrimp, respectively.
In the first study examined, “Effect of Different Salinities on the Survival and Growth of Artemina Spp,” researchers Soundaraparian and Saravanakumar designed an experiment to ascertain the ideal conditions for the growth of brine shrimp, or Artemina. In the Introduction, the scientists note the growing significance of Artemina, as it is now used as live feed for over 85 percent of cultured species around the world. Thus, a demand to grow huge quantities of Artemia has arisen, making this study incredibly relevant.
The experiment measured the survival rate, the growth rate, and the size of the brine shrimp at the time harvested in various environments. To obtain these measurements, three environments were created: sea water, brackish water, and freshwater. For this experiment the scientists used 5 liter plastic buckets. Every two days, half of the water from each bucket was discarded and new water, of each respective salinity, was added into each bucket. The environmental conditions in the buckets were tracked via measurements of salinity, temperature, and pH – estimated once every other day. Finally, measurements of survival rate, growth rate, and size were taken.
The results found were very informative. Salt water provides the most suitable environment for the brine shrimp. Fresh water was the least suitable environment for the shrimp. Shrimp raised in the saltwater had a survival rate of approximately 80 percent, whereas the shrimp raised in freshwater had an approximate survival rate of 30 percent.
From these results, the scientists can make conclusions. While the brine shrimp is euryhaline, it is most suited to an environment with high salinity. The scientists note that while their data is very supportive of salt water being the most efficient way to grow brine shrimp, it excludes several very important environmental factors. While salinity is important, environmental factors such as pH, water temperature, and availability of nutrients will not be controlled outside of the laboratory, and how salinity effects these factors will drastically effect the growth of brine shrimp.
The second study “Expression of the Artemia trachealess gene in the salt gland end...