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Calcium transfer across the outer mantle epithelium in the Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas

Journal article
Authors Kirsikka Sillanpää
Henrik Sundh
Kristina Sundell
Published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume 285
Issue 1891
ISSN 0962-8452
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Language en
Keywords Biomineralization, Ca2þ kinetics, Ca2þ transport, Calcification, Ussing chamber technique, Bivalvia, Crassostrea gigas, Strophanthus gratus
Subject categories Marine ecology


Calcium transport is essential for bivalves to be able to build and maintain their shells. Ionized calcium (Ca2þ) is taken up from the environment and eventually transported through the outer mantle epithelium (OME) to the shell growth area. However, the mechanisms behind this process are poorly understood. The objective of the present study was to characterize the Ca2þ transfer performed by the OME of the Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas, as well as to develop an Ussing chamber technique for the functional assessment of transport activities in epithelia of marine bivalves. Kinetic studies revealed that the Ca2þ transfer across the OME consists of one saturable and one linear component, of which the saturable component fits best to Michaelis – Menten kinetics and is characterized by a Km of 6.2 mM and a Vmax of 3.3 nM min21. The transcellular transfer of Ca2þ accounts for approximately 60% of the total Ca2þ transfer across the OME of C. gigas at environmental Ca2þ concentrations. The use of the pharmacological inhibitors: verapamil, ouabain and caloxin 1a1 revealed that voltage-gated Ca2þ-channels, plasma-membrane Ca2þ-ATPase and Naþ/Ca2þ-exchanger all participate in the transcellular Ca2þ transfer across the OME and a model for this Ca2þ transfer is presented and discussed. © 2018 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

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