We offer a wide range of measurement solutions for the monitoring of vertebrate and invertebrate respiration in marine (salt-water) and fresh-water aquatic environments:
Q-AQUA Aquatic Respirometry Package, designed to assess the metabolic rate (VO2) of aquatic animals by measuring the reduction of dissolved oxygen in a water-filled respirometry chamber. This comprehensive Q-AQUA system allows the study of both vertebrates and invertebrates (medium-sized, approx. >1 g) in water. Operating on the principle of intermittent flow respirometry, Q-AQUA allows the precise monitoring of up to four animals in aquatic chambers simultaneously during a single experiment, with the ability to incorporate additional components as required. It ensures uniform experimental conditions across all chambers, facilitating consistent and reliable data collection. For more details on the multi-channel Q-AQUA system Q-WSS, please contact us. Applications of the Q-AQUA include respirometry studies of aquatic vertebrates and invertebrates from a wide range of habitats.
Q-AQUA-Mini, extension of the Q-AQUA System to facilitate aquatic respirometry of small fish and insect larvae (weighing ~1 g). This modified version includes a 9 ml mini aquatic respirometer chamber and components designed for a reduced total system volume (incl. a smaller pump, PL100). The AQUA-Mini package contains also a 1.23 ml micro-chamber with a dissolved oxygen (DO; Q-S122) probe located at the top (see Fig.). This configuration allows the measurement of oxygen consumption rate (VO2) in exceptionally small specism such as larvae, juvenile fish, etc. (<0.5 g). The micro-chamber operates in intermittent stop-flow mode (closed chamber mode), increasing the sensitivity and resolution of the system for precise pO2 measurements.
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Contact us to receive the manual of the Q-AQUA / Q-AQUA-Mini package, and details about the Q-WSS Multiplexer (4 Channels)
The software displays dissolved O2 data, adjusted for salinity, temperature and pressure (all sensors included), and uses it to dynamically calculate values for oxygen consumption / respiration (VO2). Sequential measurements are taken without removing the aquatic animal from the chamber, ensuring continuous data collection. To prevent hypoxia, the chamber is periodically flushed with Oxygen-rich water between measurements - a notable advantage over continuous closed-circuit aquatic respirometry.
Throughout the experiment, water is circulated through the Q-AQUA animal chamber and flow-through vessel ("intermittent open flow" mode) by a liquid pump and an optical DO probe. The Digital Control Unit (DCU) and associated software controls a 3-way valve to determine whether the system is in recirculation or flush mode. In recirculation mode, respiration measurements are taken, whereas in flush mode, the animal chamber is flushed with oxygenated water from the water bath. This circulation-flushing cycle is repeated until the end of the experiment. Users can specify the duration of the flush and circulation phases via the software, providing flexibility and control in experimental design. In the Q-AQUA-Mini, the micro-chamber operates in intermittent stop-flow (closed chamber) mode, increasing the sensitivity and resolution of the system for precise pO2 measurements.
Headspace Aquatic Respirometry. As an alternative to the systems described above, single or multi-chamber (7 animals plus reference) measurements can be performed using an adapted setup for the Low Range Q-RP1LP Systems (used e.g. for Insect Respirometry) with 4- or 8-chamber Q-GSS Gas Switching Systems. The advantage of this "aquatic headspace"-setup is the flexible use of the gas phase CO2 and O2 analysers for both terrestrial and (occasionally) aquatic research needs - disadvantage the required "bubble stone". Please do not hesitate to contact us if this system is of interest to you.