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New Lessons from an Old Fish: What Antarctic Icefishes May Reveal about the Functions of Oxygen-Binding Proteins.

TitleNew Lessons from an Old Fish: What Antarctic Icefishes May Reveal about the Functions of Oxygen-Binding Proteins.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsO'Brien, KM
JournalIntegr Comp Biol
Volume56
Issue4
Start Page531
ISSN1557-7023
Abstract

The loss of expression of the oxygen-binding protein hemoglobin (Hb) in the family Channichthyidae (suborder Notothenioidei) of Antarctic fishes is considered a disaptation that has persisted because of the unusual conditions prevailing in the Southern Ocean during the evolution of the family. The loss of expression of the intracellular oxygen-binding protein myoglobin (Mb) in heart ventricles is more of a conundrum because it occurred at four points during the radiation of the family, suggesting weakened selective pressure maintaining expression of the protein. Yet, studies have shown that when present, Mb enhances function. Here, I discuss potential reasons for weakened selective pressure maintaining Mb expression in light of the multiple functions proposed for Mb. Additionally, I discuss results from recent studies exploring the possibility that the loss of Hb and Mb may be advantageous because it reduces the production of reactive oxygen species, levels of oxidized proteins, and the energetic costs associated with replacing oxidatively damaged proteins.

DOI10.1093/icb/icw062
Alternate JournalIntegr. Comp. Biol.
PubMed ID27252192
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