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Invertebrates use Vitamin D3 as well – April 2013

Results of a PubMed search by Dr. Grant, April 2013

Birdeater spiders

J Zoo Wildl Med. 2009 Jun;40(2):344-6.
Vitamin D3 in the hemolymph of goliath birdeater spiders (Theraphosa blondi).
Zachariah TT, Mitchell MA.
Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70803, USA. zachariahdvm at yahoo.com

Vitamin D3 is an important vitamin in vertebrates. This fat-soluble vitamin is associated with the regulation of many physiologic processes, most importantly calcium metabolism. The presence or importance of vitamin D3 has been determined in only a handful of invertebrate species. In this study, hemolymph was collected from six wild-caught, subadult goliath birdeater spiders (Theraphosa blondi) and analyzed for the presence of 25(OH)-vitamin D3, the precursor to the active form of vitamin D3. The metabolite 25(OH)-vitamin D3 was detected in all of the spiders (mean: 5.7 nmol/L, SD: 1.5 nmol/L, range: 3-7 nmol/L). The method by which spiders acquire vitamin D3 is unknown. It is possible, though unlikely, that they synthesize it via exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Many of the invertebrate species upon which theraphosid spiders prey are not known to have high circulating levels of vitamin D3 or its precursors. However, dietary intake is a possible means of vitamin D3 acquisition in this study.

Sea animal which lack calcified skeleton, plankton

J Nutr Sci Vitaminol (Tokyo). 1999 Jan;45(1):1-8.
Is vitamin D redundant in an aquatic habitat?
Rao DS, Raghuramulu N.
National Institute of Nutrition, Hyderabad, India.

Certain fish are very rich sources of vitamin D as compared to most of the higher vertebrates which have insignificant amounts of this vitamin. Not only the teleosts, which possess a calcified skeleton, but also the elasmobranchs, which lack calcified skeleton, contain extremely high concentrations of this vitamin, leading to the speculation that the function of vitamin D in fish may be different from its known classical functions in terrestrial animals. Interestingly, the two most common calcemic hormones associated with Ca and P homeostasis in higher vertebrates are either missing [parathyroid hormone (PTH)] or inactive [calcitonin (CT)] in fish. In fact, these hormones appear to have developed after transition of life from water (Ca-P rich environment) to land (environment poor in Ca and P). Thus, living in an aquatic environment with a continuous rich supply of Ca and P, do fish need vitamin D? If so, does it need to be converted to its polar forms? Additionally what are the functions of vitamin D and its metabolites in fish? Since fish stand between the invertebrates and higher vertebrates in evolution, they serve as a unique model for the study of the evolutionary and physiological significance of vitamin D. Investigations have demonstrated that the source of a high amount of vitamin D in them is primarily through their food-chain (plankton). In addition, it appears from the studies in fish that vitamin D perhaps had no physiological function in the calcium-rich aquatic environment, and its metabolism was essentially for catabolic purposes. During the course of evolution, when life started on calcium poor terrestrial environment, vitamin D became functional and its metabolism, an anabolic one, was concerned with calcium homeostasis.

Juvenile grass shrimp

J Nutr. 1994 Dec;124(12):2445-50.
The dietary requirement of juvenile grass shrimp (Penaeus monodon) for vitamin D.
Shiau SY, Hwang JY.
Department of Food Science, National Taiwan Ocean University, Keelung, Taiwan 202, Republic of China.
Two 8-wk experiments were conducted to determine the adequate level of dietary vitamin D for juvenile grass shrimp (Penaeus monodon). In Experiment 1, purified diets with six levels (0, 0.1, 0.5, 2.5, 12.5 and 62.5 mg/kg diet) of supplemental ergocalciferol and cholecalciferol were fed to P. monodon (mean weight 0.19 +/- 0.02 g). In Experiment 2, we used 0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, 0.6 and 1.0 mg/kg of supplemental cholecalciferol in basal diet fed to the shrimp (mean weight 0.25 +/- 0.03 g). In both experiments, shrimp fed vitamin D-deficient diets grew poorly. In Experiment 1, poorer growth performance was observed in shrimp fed diets containing ergocalciferol compared with those fed the diets containing cholecalciferol. In Experiment 2, weight gain was highest in shrimp fed the diet supplemented with 0.2 mg cholecalciferol/kg diet, followed by the groups fed 0.1 mg/kg, then 0.3 mg/kg, 0.05 and 0.6 mg/kg, 1.0 mg/kg, and finally the unsupplemented control group. The differences among these groups were significant (P < 0.05). The feed efficiency ratio and alkaline phosphatase activity generally followed the same pattern as the weight gain. Analysis by brokenline regression of weight gain and alkaline phosphatase activity of the shrimp in Experiment 2 indicated that the adequate dietary cholecalciferol concentration for growing P. monodon is approximately 0.1 mg/kg.

Land snails

Calcif Tissue Int. 1994 Sep;55(3):204-7.
Calcium cells from snails: response to vitamin D metabolites.
Kriajev L, Otremski I, Edelstein S.
Biochemistry Department, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.

Calcium is one of the most important substances affecting the life of molluscs, and vitamin D was shown to be an essential nutrient for land snails. In an attempt to elucidate the role that vitamin D plays in calcium metabolism of land snails, we have developed a procedure for the isolation of specialized calcium cells from digestive gland of land snails, and were able to culture these cells. The effect of vitamin D metabolites on the intracellular exchangeable calcium and alkaline phosphatase activity was studied. The metabolites tested were 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (25(OH)D3), 24,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol (24,25(OH)2D3), 1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol (1,25(OH)2D3), and the molluscan metabolite E. 25(OH)D3 was found to be the most active sterol in elevating intracellular exchangeable calcium and the activity of alkaline phosphatase, and the molluscan metabolite E was found to be the most potent sterol in the suppression of alkaline phosphatase activity. 1,25(OH)2D3 was shown to suppress both activities at high concentrations, and 24,25(OH)2D3 increased the intracellular exchangeable calcium only at high concentrations. Thus, 25(OH)D3 which is regarded as a storage form of vitamin D and devoid of biological activity, seems to be biologically active in invertebrates.

Not sea lamprey

BMC Evol Biol. 2007 Nov 12;7:222.
Functional evolution of the vitamin D and pregnane X receptors.
Reschly EJ, Bainy AC, Mattos JJ, Hagey LR, Bahary N, Mada SR, Ou J, Venkataramanan R, Krasowski MD.
Department of Pathology, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA. mdk24 at pitt.edu.

BACKGROUND: The vitamin D receptor (VDR) and pregnane X receptor (PXR) are nuclear hormone receptors of the NR1I subfamily that show contrasting patterns of cross-species variation. VDR and PXR are thought to have arisen from duplication of an ancestral gene, evident now as a single gene in the genome of the chordate invertebrate Ciona intestinalis (sea squirt). VDR genes have been detected in a wide range of vertebrates including jawless fish. To date, PXR genes have not been found in cartilaginous fish. In this study, the ligand selectivities of VDRs were compared in detail across a range of vertebrate species and compared with those of the Ciona VDR/PXR. In addition, several assays were used to search for evidence of PXR-mediated hepatic effects in three model non-mammalian species: sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus), zebrafish (Danio rerio), and African clawed frog (Xenopus laevis).

RESULTS: Human, mouse, frog, zebrafish, and lamprey VDRs were found to have similar ligand selectivities for vitamin D derivatives. In contrast, using cultured primary hepatocytes, only zebrafish showed evidence of PXR-mediated induction of enzyme expression, with increases in testosterone 6beta-hydroxylation activity (a measure of cytochrome P450 3A activity in other species) and flurbiprofen 4-hydroxylation activity (measure of cytochrome P450 2C activity) following exposure to known PXR activators. A separate assay in vivo using zebrafish demonstrated increased hepatic transcription of another PXR target, multidrug resistance gene (ABCB5), following injection of the major zebrafish bile salt, 5alpha-cyprinol 27-sulfate. The PXR target function, testosterone hydroxylation, was detected in frog and sea lamprey primary hepatocytes, but was not inducible in these two species by a wide range of PXR activators in other animals. Analysis of the sea lamprey draft genome also did not show evidence of a PXR gene.

CONCLUSION: Our results show tight conservation of ligand selectivity of VDRs across vertebrate species from Agnatha to mammals. Using a functional approach, we demonstrate classic PXR-mediated effects in zebrafish, but not in sea lamprey or African clawed frog liver cells. Using a genomic approach, we failed to find evidence of a PXR gene in lamprey, suggesting that VDR may be the original NR1I gene.

? ?

EMBO J. 1992 Mar;11(3):1003-13.
Evolution of the nuclear receptor gene superfamily.
Laudet V, Hänni C, Coll J, Catzeflis F, Stéhelin D.
INSERM U186/CNRS URA 1160, Institut Pasteur, Lille, France.

Nuclear receptor genes represent a large family of genes encoding receptors for various hydrophobic ligands such as steroids, vitamin D, retinoic acid and thyroid hormones. This family also contains genes encoding putative receptors for unknown ligands. Nuclear receptor gene products are composed of several domains important for transcriptional activation, DNA binding (C domain), hormone binding and dimerization (E domain). It is not known whether these genes have evolved through gene duplication from a common ancestor or if their different domains came from different independent sources. To test these possibilities we have constructed and compared the phylogenetic trees derived from two different domains of 30 nuclear receptor genes. The tree built from the DNA binding C domain clearly shows a common progeny of all nuclear receptors, which can be grouped into three subfamilies: (i) thyroid hormone and retinoic acid receptors, (ii) orphan receptors and (iii) steroid hormone receptors. The tree constructed from the central part of the E domain which is implicated in transcriptional regulation and dimerization shows the same distribution in three subfamilies but two groups of receptors are in a different position from that in the C domain tree: (i) the Drosophila knirps family genes have acquired very different E domains during evolution, and (ii) the vitamin D and ecdysone receptors, as well as the FTZ-F1 and the NGF1B genes, seem to have DNA binding and hormone binding domains belonging to different classes. These data suggest a complex evolutionary history for nuclear receptor genes in which gene duplication events and swapping between domains of different origins took place.

See also VitaminDWiki

Invertebrates use Vitamin D3 as well – April 2013        
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