Effects of toxicants on developing oocytes and embryos of the blue crab, Callinectes sapidus

Richard F. Lee, Kristen O'Malley, Yugi Oshima

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18 Citations (Scopus)


Oocytes (90 μm in diameter) were isolated from ovaries of 14-day post-molt adult female crabs and maintained in culture media. The addition of cadmium (20 μg/ liter) or tributyltin (2 μg/liter) to developing oocytes resulted in decreases in the growth of oocytes as measured by protein and lipovitellin accumulation relative to controls. Crab embryos isolated from yellow 'sponge' of female blue crabs were maintained in seawater until hatching (6-8 days). Toxicants tested included cadmium, copper, tributyltin and endosulfan. Some of the processes or events which were followed included water uptake, lipovitellin utilization rate, formation of appendages, formation of a heart, formation of eyespots and hatching to zoea stage. The primary effects from addition of toxicants were deformed eyespots and reduced hatching success. The hatching EC50 (concentration at which 50% of embryos failed to hatch) for copper, cadmium, tributyltin and endosulfan were 3.1, 0.25, 0.047 and 450 μg/liter, respectively. Crab embryos appear to be suitable for testing of the effects of a variety of toxicants with advantages including low cost, reproducibility, low variability and sensitivity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-128
Number of pages4
JournalMarine Environmental Research
Issue number1-4
Publication statusPublished - 1996

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Pollution


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