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Salinity effects on asexual reproduction of Lychnorhiza lucerna polyps (CNIDARIA, SCYPHOZOA)

Grant number: 20/09081-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2020
Effective date (End): September 30, 2021
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:André Carrara Morandini
Grantee:Gabriel Augusto Ramos Cassoni
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


The scyphozoans (Cnidaria) are a cosmopolitan group present in all marine habitats, from abyssalareas to coastal reefs. Success in occupying different zones is attributed to its metagenetic life-cycledivided into three stages, a sexed free swimming stage (medusae), the larval stage formed after thefusion between eggs and sperms (planula) and an asexual benthic phase (polyp), the first of whichis the best known due to its interactions with our species. Population explosion phenomena, knownas blooms, are responsible for economic, environmental, and human health impacts. Among thevariables that shape the population density of this group, the water salinity assumes an important role,inducing the production of juvenile medusae (ephyra) by the polyps, by participating in metabolicpathways that regulate their production, and with their distribution, limiting the presence or absenceof species according to their osmoregulation capacity. The ecological importance of polyps for theunderstanding of jellyfish overpopulations is becoming apparent and studies that seek to understandhow different variables regulate it are still rare. This project aims to verify the influence of salinityon the asexual reproduction of polyps of the species Lychnorhiza lucerna through the isolation ofindividuals and changes in the enclosed environment. It is expected to observe a difference in thereproductive frequency and in the types of products produced in each experimental set of salinity ofthe environment.