Marine Biology

, Volume 148, Issue 2, pp 339–346 | Cite as

Ovary development at the onset of gametogenesis is genetically determined and correlated with reproductive traits at maturity in shrimp Litopenaeus (Penaeus) vannamei

  • Fabiola G. Arcos
  • Ilie S. Racotta
  • Elena Palacios
  • Ana M. IbarraEmail author
Research Article


Besides some mammals and a few model organisms, the presence of genetic variation in ovary or gonad development at ages before that of reproduction has not been established for marine oviparous species nor has the correlation with reproductive traits at maturity. In this investigation, ovary development was evaluated for genetic variability in a full-sib family structured population of subadult shrimp. The numbers of each oocyte type that were present were counted, measured, and used to evaluate the following traits: total oocyte number, mean oocytes diameter, and ovary maturity (OM). The total ovary area was also measured for each female. Genetic variation was assessed through the estimation of the parameter ‘heritability’. The heritability (h2) of total number of oocytes was zero, but large heritability values were seen for mean oocytes diameter (h2=0.57±0.27) and OM (h2=0.71±0.26). Family means correlations between traits in subadults with traits measured in their full-sibs when adults (days to first spawn, total number of spawns, total fecundity, and fecundity at first spawn) indicated the existence of some significant associations between reproductive traits at the two ages. These findings point toward an early genetic determination of reproductive capacity in this crustacean.


Ovary Development Gonad Development Reproductive Trait Ovulation Rate Ovary Maturity 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors are grateful to J.L. Ramirez, R. Hernandez, M.C. Rodriguez-Jaramillo, M. Quiñones, B. Soto, G. Gonzalez, and J.M. Mackliz for technical support during this study. This research was supported by grants to A.M. Ibarra and I.S. Racotta from Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT)—Red Mexicana de Acuacultura (grant 100-2, “Optimization of shrimp commercial production, Line 1”); Sistema de Investigación del Mar de Cortes (grants No. 980106078, and No. 00BCS7502); and CONACyT J28160B.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fabiola G. Arcos
    • 1
  • Ilie S. Racotta
    • 1
  • Elena Palacios
    • 1
  • Ana M. Ibarra
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Centro de Investigaciones Biológicas del Noroeste S.C.MexicoMexico

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