2023 121 ENV

Detecting Bromoform in Asapagagopsis and Local Seaweeds

By: Jadi Allen, Keiko Hokeness, John Gonzales

Department: Biology

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Zachary He

The impacts of climate change are closely related with man-made increases in greenhouse gases such as Methane and CO2. Prior research has shown that bromoform, a metabolic product of several seaweed peroxisomes, is an inhibitor of methane fermentation in the ruminant gut of cattle and similar agricultural animals. In an approach to better understand the peroxisome characteristics of local California seaweeds, the 2023 Center for Cellular Construction Seaweed Peroxisome team has continued field collections at SFSU’s Estuary and Ocean Science Center in Tiburon, CA. Our team has also recently received Asparagopsis taxiformis, a key species in
methanogenesis inhibition studies, that will be cultured and analyzed at SFSU. Samples are subjected to a DAB (diaminobenzidine) staining protocol to histochemically visualize peroxisomes. Results show that 1.0 mg/mL DAB incubations followed by a 3:1:1 ethanol:glycerol:acetic acid clearing solution are optimal conditions for peroxisome detection. Future directions include continuing histochemical detection of peroxisome at
the sub-cellular level and expanding our survey.