22 January 2008

Vogt, 2007

Vogt G. 2007. Exposure of the eggs to 17α-methyl testosterone reduced hatching success and growth and elicited teratogenic effects in postembryonic life stages of crayfish. Aquatic Toxicology 85(4): 291-296. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.aquatox.2007.09.012


Testosterone is regularly found in the tissues of decapod crustaceans. Although this vertebrate-type sex hormone is not the principal factor of sex differentiation in crustaceans, it was shown to be capable of acting on the reproductive organs of shrimps and crabs. In the present study I have exposed developing eggs and stage 5 juveniles of the parthenogenetic all female marbled crayfish to 17α-methyl testosterone in order to test whether in freshwater crayfish sex can be changed from female to male by this androgen. MT did not elicit sex change, neither when administered during embryonic development nor during juvenile stage 5, the main period of proliferation of the oocytes. However, exposure to 100 μg/L MT from 64% to 84% embryonic development resulted in prolonged embryonic development, reduced hatching success, reduced growth of the juveniles, and severe malformations of the appendages in the juveniles. The marbled crayfish is recommended to be considered for toxicity tests due to its easy culture in the laboratory and its genotypical uniformity.

Keywords: methyl testosterone • marbled crayfish • toxicity • teratogenicity • ovarian development • sex differentiation

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