Ecotoxicology of early-life stages in the common cuttlefish Sepia officinalis: review and perspectives

Abstract : Cephalopods, and among them, the cuttlefish Sepia officinalis, are well-known to highly accumulate both organic and inorganic contaminants in their tissues. According to their ecology, embryonic and juvenile development occurs in coastal waters and is thus particularly subjected to anthropogenic contaminants. Considering that these early life stages are relatively long compared to the total life span of cuttlefish (i.e. 2 months of embryogenesis and 1 month of maturing juvenile life vs. 12 to 18 months of life span), the exposure of eggs and juveniles to contaminants may affect the ontogenesis and development of these earliest stages and impact their recruitment success. This paper reviews the sparse knowledge on the effects of contaminants on embryonic development and juvenile life. The embryos which are surrounded by an eggshell are partly protected against dissolved metal accumulation, but may be subjected to maternally transferred contaminants. Moreover, this bioaccumulation capacity could be affected by the physiological responses of embryos to the environmental variations such as seawater warming or hypercarbia. When hatched, juveniles can accumulate contaminants from waterborne, sediment and dietary pathways. Food appears to be the main source of contamination for most metallic contaminants. The digestive gland is known as being the main organ of detoxification and storage in adult cephalopods but in embryos and juveniles, the immaturity of the digestive system raises the question of its efficiency to cope with the toxic effects of contaminants during these early life stages. To date, a couple of studies have highlighted the sublethal effects of metals, e.g Ag, Cd, Zn, and pharmaceuticals, e.g. fluoxetine, on digestive, immune and neural systems, with consequences on growth and behaviour.
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Thomas Lacoue-Labarthe, Charles Le Pabic, Paco Bustamante. Ecotoxicology of early-life stages in the common cuttlefish Sepia officinalis: review and perspectives. Vie et Milieu, Laboratoire Arago, 2016, 66 (1), pp.65-79. ⟨hal-01330645⟩

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