Effects of ionizing radiation on embryos of the tardigrade Milnesium cf. tardigradum at different stages of development

Eliana Beltrán-Pardo, K. Ingemar Jönsson, Andrzej Wojcik, Siamak Haghdoost, Mats Harms-Ringdahl, Rosa M. Bermúdez-Cruz, Jaime E. Bernal Villegas

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20 Citeringar (Scopus)
10 Nedladdningar (Pure)


Tardigrades represent one of the most desiccation and radiation tolerant animals on Earth, and several studies havedocumented their tolerance in the adult stage. Studies on tolerance during embryological stages are rare, but differentialeffects of desiccation and freezing on different developmental stages have been reported, as well as dose-dependent effectof gamma irradiation on tardigrade embryos. Here, we report a study evaluating the tolerance of eggs from theeutardigrade Milnesium cf. tardigradum to three doses of gamma radiation (50, 200 and 500 Gy) at the early, middle, andlate stage of development. We found that embryos of the middle and late developmental stages were tolerant to all doses,while eggs in the early developmental stage were tolerant only to a dose of 50 Gy, and showed a declining survival withhigher dose. We also observed a delay in development of irradiated eggs, suggesting that periods of DNA repair might havetaken place after irradiation induced damage. The delay was independent of dose for eggs irradiated in the middle and latestage, possibly indicating a fixed developmental schedule for repair after induced damage. These results show that thetolerance to radiation in tardigrade eggs changes in the course of their development. The mechanisms behind this patternare unknown, but may relate to changes in mitotic activities over the embryogenesis and/or to activation of responsemechanisms to damaged DNA in the course of development.

Sidor (från-till)e72098
TidskriftPLoS ONE
StatusPublicerad - 2013

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