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Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol. 2019 May;231:111-118. doi: 10.1016/j.cbpa.2019.01.028. Epub 2019 Feb 6.

Metabolic effects of epinephrine on the crab Neohelice granulata.

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Departament of Physiology, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil.
Departament of Physiology, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Brazil.. Electronic address:


Although widely known for their involvement in the control of carbohydrate and lipid metabolism of vertebrates, the participation of catecholamines (CAs) in the metabolism of invertebrates is less understood. This study was designed to identify the physiological role of Epinephrine (E) in the intermediary metabolism of the burrowing crab Neohelice granulata and how E regulates the metabolism in crabs fed with a high-carbohydrate (HC) or a high-protein (HP) diet. To answer these questions, we evaluated in vivo the effects of E injections on glucose and triglycerides in the hemolymph and tissue glycogen levels of crabs fed with HC or HP diet. An in vitro investigation was carried out to assess the direct effects of E on glycogenolysis, lipolysis and glycolysis pathways in the hepatopancreas, mandibular muscle and anterior and posterior gills of this crab. E injections increased glucose and did not affect triglycerides levels in the hemolymph of either group of crabs, and E decreased glycogen in the hepatopancreas and mandibular muscle only in HP crabs, suggesting that these effects may be mediated by the crustacean hyperglycemic hormone (CHH). When the tissues were incubated with different concentrations of E, the concentration of glucose released to the medium decreased in the hepatopancreas and posterior gills, while glucose oxidation increased in the posterior gills of HP crabs. Incubation with E did not alter any parameter in tissues of HC crabs. These effects suggest that E may be involved in the metabolic response to osmotic stress.


Carbohydrate metabolism; Crustacean; Diet; Epinephrine; Lipid metabolism; Neohelice granulata


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