Question about Hemacyanin


Sepia elegans
Sep 1, 2004
Well, the title, I admit, probably is in a way slightly misleading.:oops: Anyways, this question sort of came up over a time period, so as to the info, please bear with me. A lot of what I am going on is remembered from Tonmocon, and therefore probably riddled with holes. Basically, first of all there was that talk on D. gigas (I think), at tonmocon, and one of the things brought up was how there was a population that were migrating through extremely oxygen-deprived areas between two locations. As I remember it, there wasn't an answer at the time as to how. Recently, I was looking up Hemacyanin (which is a quarter as efficient as hemoglobin but can flow freely as apposed to in cells, thereby allowing greater concentrations of it in blood--note: I'm not telling you this because I think you don't know it, I just want to make sure it's correct.), and I happened to ask my dad about it and he said that if he remembered correctly, hemacyanin held on to oxygen tighter than hemoglobin. Well, I was wondering, could increased levels of hemacyanin affect it? Just curious.
there are a number of references about this in this old thread:HURRY NOW, need quick info on octo project...I certainly think it's a possibility that the Dosidicus survival in the oxygen-poor depths could involve storing oxygen in the hemacyanin somehow, but I couldn't guess as to the mechanism... my recollection of Dr. Gilly's talk was that it seemed like something didn't add up in the activity level versus available oxygen, so perhaps when the squids are in the oxygen-poor area they have a way of running "on reserves" with oxygen stored up somehow. And that could easily be related to the blood properties... I thought that the squids showed that they can survive for hours at low oxygen levels, despite the fact that they need to swim constantly to not sink, which seems like a lot of time for just going on bound oxygen in the blood, but I don't really understand all of the factors.In the "current projects" section of he describes "Respiratory physiology research involves measurements using live, captive squid onboard research vessels in the Sea of Cortez (National Science Foundation support) and off Monterey in collaboration with scientists at Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute. Some work is also carried out at the Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, Moss Landing, CA." so I imagine he's found some new results since he talked to us (that page also has a picture of a Humboldt in what appears to be a squid treadmill sort of device!) He has a TONMO account (Wm Gilly,, but he's only posted twice... he seemed quite friendly at TONMOcon, so I expect he wouldn't mind if you PM or email him and ask if he's seen this discussion and might want to comment... of course, he may be too busy, or not be able to talk about the details because he has papers being reviewed for publication or something... in which case we can make guesses and find out once he publishes results how close we were :smile:
bubabaxx said:
Gee,that's a good quesiton. I myself am not such an expert and probably won't give you the best answer,but i think no and sorry that i don't have any proof to show you. Anyway i did some research and here is a link:
that might help you

best regards

Ok, I may be paranoid, and I apologize if I am, but I observe the following:

* this is buba's first post
* this link is to some search engine I've never heard of
* the search string is exactly the same as the thread topic (and why include irrelevant words like "question" when searching for info on hemacyanin)
* the search results appear to have absolutely no useful information in them
* the post has absolutely no information about hemacyanin
* searching for buba and support007 yields a similar link to equally irrelevant results at

therefore, I suspect that buba is either someone paid to promote this search engine or is a robot that signs up to boards and promotes the search engine automatically.

I'll be interested to see if buba posts again (I apologize if I've offended you, if I'm wrong) or if this is just a subtle, sneaky way to get advertising hits at

It looks like support007 isn't even a proper search engine yet; the list of topics is a bit, er, odd... Ancient skills include Aikido, which I believe was invented in the early 20th century, although it may have been the late 19th. And the "Love, Sex, and Religion" category, well, speaks for itself (it's not really funny enough to encourage you to go look because they'll get advertising hits...) And they put mysticism in the "science" category.

Anyway, this was subtle, but my spam detector is blinking brightly.
hey monty don't arthropods use hemocyanin as well? so squids should technically be able to take oxy from the air. just waiting for our squid masters to take their place onshore.
bigGdelta said:
hey monty don't arthropods use hemocyanin as well? so squids should technically be able to take oxy from the air. just waiting for our squid masters to take their place onshore.

Wikipedia says some do: Hemocyanin - Wikipedia

A google search led me to this Welcome to the Fitch Lab

it suggests air-breathing arthropods with tracheas didn't need it any more, but I don't have time to read the rest of the article or look up the reference (made in the "background" section) right now...

It sounds like most of the hemocyanin using arthropods are crustacean-like, although IIRC the horseshoe crab listed in the wikipedia article has very similar blood to spiders... dunno.

Certainly, I don't see oxygent transport as being a limiting factor in cephs not being freshwater or air breathers, but I still haven't seen a compelling explanation in any of the threads asking the "why only salt water"... In fact the examples that there are a lot of freshwater and land-dwelling gastropods sure also suggests that many of the obvious things to consider aren't a problem....

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