Article Title

X-ray Microanalysis of the Cuticle Surface of Two Southern California Marine Isopod Species





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Energy dispersive (EDS) x-ray microanalysis (XRMA) was used to determine the elemental composition of thoracic (pereonal) epicuticle in two isopod crustacean species, Colidotea rostrata and Excorallana tricornis occiden- tal. This represents the first study analyzing the cuticle of marine isopods using EDS techniques. The most common elements (with an atomic number greater than sodium) in both species were calcium, magnesium, potassium, silicon, phos- phorus, and aluminum, with calcium making up 86-95% of total elemental com- position in all analyses. There were significant interspecific differences in elemental composition. Other elements identified in these species include the heavy metals strontium, neobium, molybdenum, dyprosium, lanthanum, and platinum. These heavy metals have not been reported as normal constituents of isopod cuticle, and may be indicative of marine pollution in the coastal waters of southern California and northern Baja California.