Hopkins Marine Station Student Paper

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(full paper is archived in the Miller Library)

Title: Induction of the heat shock response in Psolus squamatus under conditions of heat and salinity stress
Student Author(s): Shin, Christine
Faculty Advisor(s): Levine, R. Paul.
Pages: 29
Location: Final Papers Biology 175H
Date: June 1993
Abstract: The heat shock response is a universal phenomenon in which an environmental stressor causes an animal to produce large quantities of heat shock proteins or HSP's. These proteins are thought to protect the cells from the damaging effects of stress, allowing the organism to recover from the shock and survive. In this study, the heat shock response was studied using the western blotting technique in the benthic sea cucumber, Psolus squamatus. An initial screening of the proteins from an unshocked specimen revealed a total of five proteins that cross-react with the anti-heat shock protein 60 antibody. P. squamatus generally lives in temperatures between 4 degrees C and 7 degrees C and in an ocean water salinity of 33.2 ppt. heat shocking the animals along a temperature gradient revealed that heat shock protein 60 production can be induced at 13 degrees C, but protein synthesis appears to shut down and protein degredation may occur at super-ambient temperatures such as 20 degrees C. Death occurs at 22 C. Salinity shock was at 10 g/L above and below the natural salinity of 33.2 g/L. Results of the salinity shock appear a little more ambiguous and further study needs to be done before any conclusions are drawn.