This study examined the effects of lab-generated acoustic signals on the behaviour and biochemistry of Mediterranean mussels (Mytilus galloprovincialis). The experiment was carried out in a tank equipped with a video-recording system using six groups of five mussels exposed to five acoustic treatments (each treatment was replicated three times) for 30 min. The acoustic signals, with a maximum sound pressure level of 150 dB rms re 1 μPa, differed in frequency range as follows: low (0.1–5 kHz), mid-low (5–10 kHz), mid (10–20 kHz), mid-high (20–40 kHz) and high (40–60 kHz). The exposure to sweeps did not produce any significant changes in the mussels' behaviour. Conversely, the specimens exposed to the low frequency band treatment showed significantly higher values of the following biochemical stress parameters measured in their plasma and tissues: glucose, total proteins, total haemocyte number (THC), heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) expression, and Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activity. The responses observed in the mussels exposed to low frequency sweeps enable us to suppose a biological and ecological role for this sound, which contains the main frequencies produced by both shipping traffic and the acoustic emissions of fish.
- Molecular Biology