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Oceans Seminar Series #6 - Daniel Pauly - ‘’Breathing Water in a Warming World: an Overview of the Gill-Oxygen Limitation Theory (GOLT)”

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Event Details:

The abstract of Dr. Pauly's talk is as follows:

"There is less oxygen in the best aerated sea or freshwater water than on top of Mount Everest. Fish and other water-breathing ectotherms (WBE) deal with this through a number of adaptations shaped by physical and dimensional constraints. These constraints are the key components of the Gill-Oxygen Limitation Theory (GOLT), presented here to provide mechanisms for key aspects of the biology (growth and its response to temperature, the timing of maturation, migrations, and others) in fish and other WBE. The GOLT’s basic tenet is that the surface area of the gills or other respiratory surfaces WBE cannot, as 2-dimensional structures, supply them with sufficient oxygen to keep up with the growth of their 3-dimensional bodies, and with the spontaneous denaturation of their bodies’ proteins, which is extremely temperature sensitive. Notably, the reduced oxygen supply per body weight induces sexual maturation, and later a slowing and cessation of growth, all accompanied by an increase of physiological processes relying on glycolytic enzymes and a declining role of oxidative enzymes. Because the ‘dimensional tension’ underlying this argument is widely misunderstood, emphasis is given to a detailed, point-by-point presentation of the various component of the GOLT. Aside from having a wide theoretical scope, the GOLT has many potential practical applications, e.g., in optimizing the way fish farmers aerate their ponds, and in predicting how fish populations will react to the warming and deoxygenation of the oceans and freshwater bodies.”


This is in-person at Hopkins Marine Station and will be livestreamed on campus in Mitchell 350/372


Dr. Daniel Pauly Bio:

Dr. Daniel Pauly is the Sea Around Us Principal Investigator and Killam Professor at the University of British Columbia’s Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries.
He is a French-Canadian citizen who completed his high school and university studies in Germany. His doctorate (1979) and habilitation (1985) are in Fisheries Biology, from the University of Kiel.