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1 May 2011 Life Cycle of the Multiarmed Sea Star Coscinasterias acutispina (Stimpson, 1862) in Laboratory Culture: Sexual and Asexual Reproductive Pathways
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Abstract

The multiarmed sea star Coscinasterias acutispina generally has 7–10 arms and 2–5 madreporites. It is known to be able to reproduce by asexual fission, and we have previously observed that this species also has the ability to reproduce sexually; however, there has been no report until now of spawning in this species. We succeeded in establishing a long-term culture of juveniles produced by artificial fertilization. Twelve months after the completion of metamorphosis, three individuals had six arms of the same length and a madreporite. At this time, fission occurred in two of these individuals, while the remaining individual underwent fission four months later. Each sea star divided into two halves, provided with three arms each. Thereafter, four or five new arms and two or four madreporites were formed anew in each of the six daughter sea-stars, so that by 30 days after the first fission the number of arms and madreporites in each was similar to that in adults. A second fission occurred in four of these six individuals, four or five months after the first fission, and in three of them the plane of division was the same as that of the first fission. The original three individuals eventually proliferated to 12 by undergoing fission. All individuals had fully developed gonads by 1–3 months after the second fission. Some of them eventually spawned under laboratory culture, and the resulting larvae metamorphosed into juveniles. Our observations demonstrate that individuals of C. acutispina possess the potential for both sexual and asexual reproduction.

© 2011 Zoological Society of Japan
Daisuke Shibata, Yoshiaki Hirano, and Miéko Komatsu "Life Cycle of the Multiarmed Sea Star Coscinasterias acutispina (Stimpson, 1862) in Laboratory Culture: Sexual and Asexual Reproductive Pathways," Zoological Science 28(5), 313-317, (1 May 2011). https://doi.org/10.2108/zsj.28.313
Received: 5 April 2010; Accepted: 1 November 2010; Published: 1 May 2011
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