WATERCRESS SECONDARY METABOLITE TOXICITY TO DIATOM COMMUNITIES
Watercress (Nasturtium officinale) is a non-native perennial herb that can form dense populations in springs and spring brooks. Upon tissue damage, watercress releases the chemical phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC). This chemical acts as an herbivory deterrent to snails, amphipods, and other macroinvertebrates. The effects that PEITC has on attached algae are unknown. Field collected diatoms were exposed to known concentrations of PEITC in a 48-hour toxicity test to examine toxic effects. Preliminary results indicate that as the concentration of PEITC increased, the percentage of healthy, intact chloroplasts decreased, resulting in a higher number of dead diatoms.
Kambridge Stephens (Primary Presenter/Author), University of Oklahoma, firstname.lastname@example.org;
Elizabeth Bergey (Co-Presenter/Co-Author), University of Oklahoma, email@example.com;