A proteomic study of the effect of ocean acidification on blue mussels

Science for Life Laboratory



The Facility for Mass Spectrometry-based Proteomics, SciLifeLab, Uppsala is in collaboration with Kristineberg Marine Research Station, Gothenburg looking for a motivated student for a Master’s degree project.


Aim and Background

The overall aim of the project is to study the effect of ocean acidification (OA) on blue mussels. In this specific project we want to compare the proteomes of mussels grown in seawater with normal pH and acidified seawater respectively.

OA caused by anthropogenic CO2 emission is a great threat against marine ecosystems and an emerging global problem. The absorption of CO2 by seawater initiates chemical reactions that for example reduce seawater pH, carbonate ion concentration and the saturation state of calcium carbonate minerals. 

Calcifying organisms, such as bivalves, are suggested to be particularly negatively influenced by OA since calcium carbonate minerals are the building blocks for skeletons and shells.


Work Description

Gills and haemocytes have been collected from blue mussels grown in seawater with normal pH and acidified seawater respectively. Proteins and endogenous peptides will be extracted from the samples and analyzed by LC-MS/MS. Various data handling techniques will thereafter be applied to the data set for comparisons of the two groups.



  • Development and optimization of methods for extraction of proteins and endogenous peptides.
  • Enzymatic digestion of proteins.
  • Analysis of proteins and endogenous peptides using LC-MS/MS.
  • Data analysis using different approaches.                                                                         

Student Background

This thesis will best suit a student with a background in analytical chemistry, molecular biology, biotechnology or biology. Practical experience from wet-lab work is advantageous.


This thesis project will last for approximately 20 weeks, but can be adjusted depending on educational program requirements. The work is to be carried out at Uppsala University, Dept. of Chemistry at the Biomedical Centre, Analytical Chemistry.


More information


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