Symbiotic Association Between Sea Star Larvaeand Bacteria in the North Atlanticby Isidro Bosch, Professor of Biology
in collaboration with Will Jaeckle, Illinois Wesleyan University
We are currently studying a symbiotic relationship between sea star larvae and bacteria. The larvae are abundant and widespread in the North Atlantic and they can be collected in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Florida almost any time of year. These field-collected larvae harbor large numbers of bacteria beneath the cuticle along the region of the larval gut. Research is well under way to identify the larvae and study the nature of the association.
Posted Jan, 2012
Left: Clonal larva showing posterolateral arms in the process of developing into gastrulas
Right: TEM showing large numbers of bacteria that live outside the larval epidermis, beneath the larval cuticle. The bacteria are common only in the region of the larval gut.
Links to Additional Information
- Map showing where larvae have been collected
- Links to relevant abstracts