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Author Topic: How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?  (Read 2315 times)

Offline Supercryptid

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« on: 21/06/2011 03:36:46 »
http://www.lifesci.ucsb.edu/~biolum/organism/dragon.html

^According to this webpage, the black dragonfish uses a chlorophyll derivative to help it see red light (look at the bottom of the "Seeing the Light" section). My question is: how did the fish get the genes needed to make a chlorophyll derivative? Are not those genes native to plants? Did it somehow incorporate plant DNA into its own genome? How? I know that bdelloid rotifers can incorporate foreign DNA, but I didn't know any fish could.


 

Offline RD

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« Reply #1 on: 21/06/2011 13:30:58 »
Quote
Q. How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?

 [?] by eating algae ? (which contain chlorophyll)

« Last Edit: 21/06/2011 13:36:40 by RD »
 

Offline Supercryptid

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« Reply #2 on: 22/06/2011 06:04:46 »
I think it's a predatory fish. Probably wouldn't get chlorophyll by eating algae. Unless its prey eats algae and somehow the molecule or derivative thereof is kept intact long enough for the dragonfish to use it?
 

Offline CliffordK

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« Reply #3 on: 22/06/2011 11:12:37 »
Here is an interesting article about the Malacosteus Niger dragonfish.

http://shkrobius.livejournal.com/193079.html

So, apparently the chlorophyll is taken from cyanobacteria (I think), in much the same way that humans make retinal from beta carotene and vitamin A.

 

Offline Bored chemist

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« Reply #4 on: 22/06/2011 20:24:21 »
Chlorophyll is quite similar to haemoglobin so it's not impossible that the fish has "learned" to make it, but it seems more likely that it obtains it from food.
 

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How did this fish get a chlorophyll derivative?
« Reply #4 on: 22/06/2011 20:24:21 »

 

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