Epithelial cells of the gut, antennal glands, integument, and gills of crustaceans regulate the movements of ions into and across these structures and thereby influence the concentrations of ions in the hemolymph. Specific transport proteins serving cations and anions are found on apical and basolateral cell membranes of epithelia in these tissues. In recent years, a considerable research effort has been directed at elucidating their physiological and molecular properties and relating these characteristics to the overall biology of the organisms. Efforts to describe ion transport in crustaceans have focused on the membrane transfer properties of Na1/H1 exchange, calcium uptake as it relates to the molt cycle, heavy metal sequestration and detoxification, and anion movements into and across epithelial cells. In addition to defining the properties and mechanisms of cation movements across specific cell borders, work over the past 5 yr has also centered on defining the molecular nature of certain transport proteins such as the Na1/H1 exchanger in gill and gut tissues. Monovalent anion transport proteins of the gills and gut have received attention as they relate to osmotic and ionic balance in euryhaline species. Divalent anion secretion events of the gut have been defined relative to potential roles they may have in hyporegulation of the blood and in hepatopancreatic detoxification events involving complexation with cationic metals.
Previously published in Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 1999, 72(1), pp. 1-18 http://www.press.uchicago.edu/ucp/journals/journal/pbz.html