Now showing items 1-20 of 1439

    • Article

      Dietary lipid requirement of whiteleg shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei juveniles cultured in biofloc system 

      A Hamidoghli, S Won, FA Aya, H Yun, J Bae, IK Jang & SC Bai - Aquaculture Nutrition, 2019 - Wiley
      An eight-week feeding trial was conducted to evaluate the contribution of biofloc on dietary lipid requirement in whiteleg shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei. Five diets with graded levels of dietary lipid (45, 60, 90, 120 and 150 g/kg) were fed to juvenile shrimp. Final weight, weight gain and specific growth rate of shrimp fed diets with 60, 90 and 120 g/kg lipid levels were significantly higher than those of shrimp fed diets with lipid levels 45 and 150 g/kg (p < .05). Feed efficiency and protein efficiency ratio of shrimp fed 60, 90 and 120 g/kg were higher than those fed 150 g/kg diet. Plasma total cholesterol and triglyceride levels were lower in shrimp fed 45 g/kg compared with those fed the 90 g/kg (p < .05). Also, lysozyme activity for 90 g/kg group was higher than the 15 g/kg group. Hepatopancreas lipase and amylase activities of shrimp fed 90 and 120 g/kg diets were significantly higher than those of shrimp fed 45 and 150 g/kg diets. Broken-line regression analysis for weight gain indicated that the dietary lipid requirement of whiteleg shrimp juveniles reared in a biofloc system was estimated to be higher than 56 g/kg but <60 g/kg.
    • Article

      Draft genome sequence of multidrug-resistant Vibrio parahaemolyticus strain PH698, infecting penaeid shrimp in the Philippines 

      CP Saloma, SMU Penir, JMR Azanza, LD dela Pena, RC Usero, NAR Cabillon, ADP Bilbao & EC Amar - Microbiology Resource Announcements, 2019 - American Society for Microbiology
      The emergence of multidrug-resistant bacterial strains in diverse settings has been reported globally. In the Philippine shrimp aquaculture industry, antibiotics are used for the treatment of bacterial diseases during the production cycle. We report the draft genome of Vibrio parahaemolyticus PH698, a multidrug-resistant strain isolated from a Philippine shrimp farm.
    • Article

      Enriched Ulva pertusa as partial replacement of the combined fish and soybean meals in juvenile abalone Haliotis asinina (Linnaeus) diet 

      R Santizo-Taan, M Bautista-Teruel & JRH Maquirang - Journal of Applied Phycology, 2019 - Springer Verlag
      The potential of enriched Ulva pertusa meal as feed ingredient in abalone juveniles, Haliotis asinina was evaluated. Four isonitrogenous and isolipidic diets were formulated which contain 27% protein and 5% lipid. Enriched U. pertusa meal replaced 0% (control), 10%, 20%, and 30% of protein from fish and soybean meals in the formulated diets. Thirty randomly selected abalone juveniles with average weight and shell length of 0.45 g ± 0.01 and 12.71 mm ± 0.01, respectively, were placed in each of the twelve 60-L oval fiberglass tanks equipped with a flow-through seawater system. Abalone were given diets at 3–5% body weight daily for 120 days in three replicate samples. Results showed no significant differences (p > 0.05) in percent weight gain, shell length, specific growth rate, feed conversion ratio, and protein efficiency ratio even up to 30% replacement level. Apparent dry matter digestibility of U. pertusa meal in abalone diet was 92%. Crude protein content of the abalone fed diets 1 (10% enriched U. pertusa meal) and 3 (30% enriched U. pertusa meal) was significantly (p < 0.05) higher than those fed on basal diet. Enriched U. pertusa meal can partially replace fish and soybean meals as protein source in formulated diets for abalone, Haliotis asinina juveniles.
    • Article

      Draft genome sequence of Vibrio parahaemolyticus strain PH1339, which causes acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease in shrimp in the Philippines 

      SMU Penir, LD dela Pena, NAR Cabillon, ADP Bilbao, EC Amar & CP Saloma - Microbiology Resource Announcements, 2019 - American Society for Microbiology
      We report the first draft genome sequence of an acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease (AHPND)-causing Vibrio parahaemolyticus strain isolated from a Penaeus vannamei sample from the Philippines. The strain carries the genes encoding the Pir-like toxin pair PirAvp and PirBvp.
    • Article

      Effects of replacing dietary fish oil with beef tallow on growth performance, serological parameters, and fatty acid composition in juvenile olive flounder, Paralichthys olivaceus 

      S Lee, FA Aya, S Won, A Hamidoghli & SC Bai - Journal of the World Aquaculture Society, 2019 - Wiley
      This study evaluated the effects of replacing fish oil (FO) with beef tallow (BT) in juvenile olive flounder, Paralichthys olivaceus (3.93 ± 0.07 g), over 8 weeks. Seven diets, consisting of 0, 25, 50, 75, and 100% replacement of FO with BT and 63 and 75.9% replacement supplemented with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) at 0.9 and 1.1% of 100 g diet, respectively, were distributed into 21 tanks in a semi‐recirculation system with 15 fish per tank. The replacement of FO with BT at the given levels showed no significant changes (p > .05) in growth performance and whole‐body proximate composition. Fish fed the diet of 75.9% replacement with 1.1% DHA supplementation showed the best performance in these measurements among the treatments. Plasma glutamic pyruvic transaminase, cholesterol, high‐ and low‐density lipoproteins, and total protein were not significantly influenced by the replacement of FO with BT. The FO replacement generally resulted in a reduction of eicosapentaenoic acid, DHA, and n‐3/n‐6 polyunsaturated fatty acid ratio in the whole body, whereas the DHA supplementation recovered the level of DHA and the n‐3/n‐6 ratio to those observed in the group fed the 0% replacement diet. Taken together, BT along with DHA supplementation can potentially be a cost‐effective alternative for FO in olive flounder culture.
    • Patent

      Hatchery protocol for silver therapon (Leiopotherapon plumbeus, Kner 1864) 

      FA Aya - 2019 - Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines
      The hatchery protocol for silver therapon (Leiopotherapon plumbeus, Kner 1864) in outdoor tanks is disclosed. The process includes timed provision of preferred natural food commensurate with the age of larvae, pre-conditioning of rearing water, utilizing ambient lake water and the addition of fresh tropical almond leaves Terminalia catappa to enhance natural food supply in tanks. A stocking density of 0.1 to 1 larvae /L was used to enhance survival and growth. Survival of larvae increased to 35.41 ± 15.32 per cent using the invention.
    • Article

      A review of reported seaweed diseases and pests in aquaculture in Asia 

      GM Ward, JP Faisan, EJ Cottier‐Cook, C Gachon, AQ Hurtado, PE Lim, I Matoju, FE Msuya, D Bass & J Brodie - Journal of the World Aquaculture Society, 2019 - Wiley
      Seaweeds have been used as a food for centuries in Asia and are increasingly exploited as a source for dietary supplements, animal feed, chemicals, and biofuels. In recent years, there has been an increase in the prevalence of diseases and pests in these aquaculture crops, with a subsequent reduction in their quantity and commercial value. In this article, we review diseases that have been reported in the scientific literature for species of red and brown seaweeds. We have focused on the major seaweed crops grown in Asia, where much of this production is centered. We also provide information on disease management and biosecurity and some observations on future directions.
    • Article

      Evaluation of the bioremediation potential of mud polychaete Marphysa sp. in aquaculture pond sediments 

      MAE Mandario, VR Alava & NC Añasco - Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 2019 - Springer
      Organic enrichment from aquaculture could alter the chemical composition of the fishpond bottom by increasing the levels of organic matter (OM), sulfur (S), iron (Fe), and lower pH of the sediment. Polychaetes can contribute to the nutrient cycling and remediation of polluted sediment. A laboratory experiment was conducted to test the remediation potential of small and large mud polychaete Marphysa sp. introduced to two types of fishpond sediment. Initially, Sediment A had lower OM, S, Fe, and higher pH than Sediment B. After 30 days, in Sediment B, large polychaetes significantly decreased the OM level (27%) while both small and large polychaetes promoted significant decreases of S (71%) and Fe (70–73%) in both sediment types. The increase of sediment pH was promoted by the presence of polychaetes (0.53–0.69) although pH level in small polychaete was not significantly different with the no polychaete treatment. Regardless of polychaete treatment, the pH level of Sediment B (1.04 ± 0.10) was significantly improved than that of Sediment A (0.17 ± 0.02). In both sediments, large polychaetes (95%) had better survival rates than small polychaetes (73%). These findings reveal that large Marphysa sp. can significantly improve sediment quality by decreasing the levels of OM, S, and Fe and improve pH level to a more basic form without compromising its survival. Large polychaetes are recommended to be used as bioremediators of organically enriched aquaculture pond sediment.
    • Article

      A new species of the sanguinea-group Quatrefages, 1866 (Annelida: Eunicidae: Marphysa) from the Philippines 

      CJ Glasby, MAE Mandario, I Burghardt, E Kupriyanova, LM Gunton & PA Hutchings - Zootaxa, 2019 - Magnolia Press
      A new species of the Marphysa sanguinea group, M. iloiloensis n. sp. (Annelida: Eunicida: Eunicidae), is described from the Marine Annelids Hatchery of the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center, Aquaculture Department (SEAFDEC- AQD), Iloilo Province, Philippines. It represents the first record of this group in the Philippines. The new species is most similar morphologically to M. hongkongensa Wang, Zhang & Qiu, 2018, but can be distinguished from it by having fewer branchial filaments, a pair of faint eyes (absent in M. hongkongensa), and in slight differences in jaw morphology and chaetation. The embryos of the new species develop inside a jelly cocoon attached to the entrance of the adult burrow; this is the first time that egg-containing cocoons have been found in any species of the sanguinea-group. Phylogenetic analysis based on the mitochondrial gene cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) revealed that Marphysa iloiloensis n. sp. is genetically distinct from all other analysed Marphysa species and forms a sister group to M. hongkongensa. A revised identification key to members of the sanguinea-group in Southeast Asia is provided.
    • Article

      Fire + water + bombs: Disaster management among academic libraries in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur, Philippines 

      DL Superio, EM Abaday, MGH Oliveros, AS Delgado, VEV Palcullo & JF Geromiano - International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, 2019 - Elsevier
      The academic libraries in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur, Philippines are vulnerable to disasters. In the last ten years, the majority of the 13 respondent libraries have sustained at least one disaster that may have been caused by civil unrest, war or terrorism, flood, earthquake, or fire. The majority were unprepared to face such disasters, may it be small-scale or catastrophic, and only one library has a disaster management plan. The lack of significant holdings of rare books, shortage of financial resources, no perceived risk, and the unavailability of staff to write a disaster management plan, are the reasons why most libraries do not have a plan. Moreover, the majority lacked staff that has undergone training in disaster preparedness and management. On the other hand, all of the libraries have disaster management practices that although not enough, will still enable them to lessen the effects of the disaster and save their library and parts of their collection when necessary. The respondents identified management support as an essential factor in their success in disaster management. The results of the study provide valuable information on the current state of the libraries in the Philippines with regards to disaster preparedness and management. Therefore, it is an essential addition to the literature on disaster management in the Philippines, which is very scarce as of the moment.
    • Article

      Induction of gonadal development in protogynous grouper with orally delivered FSH DNA 

      P Palma, J Nocillado, J Superio, EG de Jesus-Ayson, F Ayson, A Takemura, MW Lu & A Elizur - Marine Biotechnology, 2019 - Springer
      The availability of sexually mature fish often dictates the success of its captive breeding. In this study, we induced reproductive development in juvenile protogynous tiger grouper through oral administration of a plasmid (p) containing an engineered follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). An expression construct (pcDNA3.1) was designed to express a single-chain FSH consisting of giant grouper FSH β-subunit and glycoprotein subunit-α (CGα), linked by the carboxy-terminal peptide (CTP) sequence from the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). Single oral delivery of pFSH encapsulated in liposome and chitosan to tiger grouper yielded a significant increase in plasma FSH protein level after 4 days. Weekly pFSH feeding of juvenile tiger groupers for 8 weeks stimulated ovarian development as indicated by a significant increase in oocyte diameter and progression of oocytes to cortical alveolar stage. As the pFSH treatment progressed from 20 to 38 weeks, female to male sex change was initiated, characterized by oocyte regression, proliferation of spermatogonial cells, and occurrence of spermatogenic cysts. It was also associated with significantly lower mRNA expression of steroidogenic genes (cyp11b, cyp19a1a, and foxl2) and basal plasma levels of sex steroid hormones 17β-estradiol (E2), testosterone (T), and 11-ketotestosterone (11KT). Results suggest that pFSH stimulates ovarian development up to cortical alveolar stage and then initiates sex change in tiger grouper. These findings significantly contribute to our knowledge on the role of FSH in the development of protogynous hermaphroditic fish. This study is the first to demonstrate induction of reproductive development in fish through oral delivery of plasmid gonadotropin.
    • Article

      Solar irradiation as an alternative bleaching process for agar extracted from Gracilariopsis heteroclada in Iloilo, Philippines 

      LF Endoma, LM Nacional & MRJ Luhan - Botanica Marina, 2019 - De Gruyter
      The current industrial practice of using chemical bleach to achieve the pure white colour of agar is deleterious to both human and environmental health. This study evaluates the potential of solar irradiation as an alternative bleaching process for agar extracted from Gracilariopsis heteroclada in Iloilo, Philippines. The physico-chemical properties of agar obtained from alkaline-treated seaweed after exposure to different bleaching conditions (e.g. solar irradiation, hypochlorite solution, and ultraviolet and fluorescent lights) were examined and compared with commercial bacteriological agar. Photobleaching through solar irradiation produced agar with superior gel strength (1038.61 g cm−2), high 3,6-anhydrogalactose content (41.44%) and low total inorganic sulphate content (1.87%) without compromising agar yield (19.37%). Solar irradiation offers very promising results as a simple, low-cost, environmentally friendly alternative to the chlorine bleaching process for agar extraction.
    • Article

      Fish performance, nutrient digestibilities, and hepatic and intestinal morphologies in grouper Epinephelus fuscoguttatus fed fermented copra meal 

      REP Mamauag, JA Ragaza & T Nacionales - Aquaculture Reports, 2019 - Elsevier
      Protein enhanced copra meal (PECM®) is an alternative, cheap, and sustainable source of plant protein for the aquafeed industry, albeit its use on carnivorous fish species has been very limited. A 70-day feeding trial using grouper Epinephelus fuscoguttatus (initial mean body weight of 1.86 ± 0.19 g) tested fermented copra meal as feed ingredient. Six isonitrogenous (crude protein of 45%) and iso-lipidic (crude fat of 11%) diets consisted of PECM®: a control diet at 0% soybean meal replacement (C); four diets replacing soybean meal at 25% (FC25), 50% (FC50), 75% (FC75), 100% (FC100) – all with methionine and lysine supplementation; and 100% soybean replacement without methionine and lysine supplementation (FCW100). Growth and feed performance were not significantly (P > 0.05) affected by PECM® replacement of soybean meal up to 100%, even without methionine and lysine supplementation. Chemical body composition was likewise not significantly (P > 0.05) altered. PECM® when used as a grouper feed ingredient has protein, lipid, carbohydrate and dry matter digestibilities of 89.28%, 78.63%, 82.57%, and 48%, respectively. Hepatic and intestinal morphologies displayed no apparent pathological changes. PECM® can be efficiently utilized by grouper and can replace soybean meal up to 100% (16% in diet) for normal fish performance and digestive organ functions.
    • Article

      Reproductive development of the threatened giant grouper Epinephelus lanceolatus 

      The giant grouper is presumed to follow the reproductive pattern of most Epinephelus species, characterized by protogynous hermaphroditism wherein male maturation is attained through sex reversal of a functional female. This hypothesis, however, has not been verified due to lack of biological data. The present study addresses this gap by investigating the reproductive development of giant groupers from juvenile stage through sexual maturity. Gonad histological analysis of hatchery-bred juvenile giant grouper from Queensland, Australia (0.8–5.2 kg, n = 43) have shown earliest occurrence of primary oocytes (i.e. ovarian differentiation) in 47.8 cm and 2.5 kg fish. Monitoring of sexual maturity by gonadal biopsy was performed in a stock of wild-caught giant groupers (2–52 kg) held in sea cages in the Philippines and Vietnam from 2015 to 2017. Onset of female sexual maturity was at 96.9 ± 1.6 cm and 23.5 ± 1.5 kg in the Philippines, and 103.0 ± 4.1 cm and 33.5 ± 2.5 kg in Vietnam. In both locations, development of primary males was observed wherein fish produced milt (or spermiated) without passing through a functional female phase. The ratio of primary males to females in both locations was about 1:2. Size at maturity of primary males is 86.5 ± 4.8 cm and 17.1 ± 2.1 kg in the Philippines, and 97.3 ± 1.3 cm and 34.3 ± 0.9 kg in Vietnam. To aid in the monitoring of female maturation, we developed a non-invasive method based on immunoassay of vitellogenin in skin mucus and this was shown to be effective in detecting female maturation 9 ± 2 months prior to first observation of oocytes through gonadal biopsy. Our findings suggest that giant grouper is a diandric protogynous hermaphrodite. This study provides novel information on the reproductive biology of giant grouper, an economically important and vulnerable species.
    • Article

      Gonadal response of juvenile protogynous grouper (Epinephelus fuscoguttatus) to long term recombinant follicle-stimulating hormone administration 

      P Palma, J Nocillado, J Superio, EGdJ Ayson, F Ayson, I Bar & A Elizur - Biology of Reproduction, 2019 - Oxford University Press
      The role of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) in the gonadal development of protogynous hermaphroditic grouper (E. fuscoguttatus) was investigated. Recombinant giant grouper (E. lanceolatus) FSH (rggFSH) was produced in yeast. Its receptor binding capacity and steroidogenic potency were confirmed in vitro. Weekly injections of rggFSH to juvenile tiger grouper for 8 weeks (100 μg/kg body weight, BW) resulted in significantly larger and more advanced oocytes (cortical alveolar stage vs. primary growth stage in control). Sustained treatment with rggFSH (20 to 38 weeks at 200 μg/kg BW) resulted in significant reduction in gonad size, degeneration of oocytes and proliferation of spermatogonial cells, indicative of female to male sex change. Gene expression analysis showed that, while initiating female to male sex change, the rggFSH significantly suppressed the steroidogenic genes cyp11b, cyp19a1a and foxl2 which restrained the endogenous production of sex steroid hormones thus prevented the differentiation of spermatogonial cells. Expression profile of sex markers dmrt1, amh, figla and bmp15 suggests that the observed sex change was restricted at the initiation stage. Based on these results, we propose that the process of female to male sex change in the protogynous grouper is initiated by FSH, rather than sex steroids and likely involves steroid-independent pathway. The cortical alveolar stage in oocyte development is the critical point after which FSH-induced sex change is possible in grouper.
    • Article

      Artificial substratum consisting of poly-β-hydroxybutyrate-based biodegradable plastic improved the survival and overall performance of postlarval tiger shrimp Penaeus monodon 

      G Ludevese-Pascual, JL Laranja, E Amar, P Bossier & P De Schryver - Aquaculture Research, 2019 - Wiley
      The use of artificial substratum consisting of poly‐β‐hydroxybutyrate (PHB)‐based biodegradable plastic for penaeid shrimp culture was investigated in the present study. The survival of postlarval tiger shrimp Penaeus monodon (30 ± 5 mg) provided with PHB substratum made out of PHB type DP9002 (Metabolix GmbH, Köln, Germany) was 88.7 ± 3.4% and this was significantly higher as compared to postlarvae provided conventional substratum consisting of polyvinylchloride (PVC) pipes (67.3 ± 6.5%). However, no significant weight improvement was observed for the postlarval tiger shrimp indicating that PHB could not be used as growth promoter. Nevertheless, a trend of improved robustness against adverse environmental conditions (lethal ammonium chloride concentration) and increased resistance to pathogenic Vibrio was observed in postlarval tiger shrimp provided with PHB substratum as compared to postlarvae provided with PVC substratum. Results indicate higher preference by postlarvae on PHB substratum over PVC substratum. Overall, this study indicates the potential of artificial substratum consisting of PHB‐based biodegradable plastic as replacement for conventional substratum consisting of PVC pipes in enhancing the survival of postlarval tiger shrimp and improving its performance against adverse environmental conditions and disease resistance.
    • Article

      Gonad development and size‐at‐maturity of silver therapon Leiopotherapon plumbeus (Kner 1864; Teleostei:Terapontidae) in tropical volcanic lakes in south Luzon, Philippines 

      PJT Denusta, EG de Jesus-Ayson, MA Laron, FA Aya & LMB Garcia - Journal of Applied Ichthyology, 2019 - Wiley
      Gonad development of the silver therapon Leiopotherapon plumbeus in two volcanic crater lake habitats (Sampaloc Lake, Taal Lake) in south Luzon, Philippines was examined during the annual reproductive cycle. The minimum body size‐at‐maturity of fish in these two lake habitats was also compared. Four gonad development stages were characterized as basis for the classification of ovarian (immature, maturing, mature, spawned) and testicular maturation (immature, maturing, mature) phases. The occurrence of all development stages in individual gonads suggest an asynchronous development whereby advanced stages are recruited continuously from a pool of younger stage germ cells to result in elevated female and male GSI throughout the annual cycle due to active gonadogenesis. Together with the increasing occurrence of advanced stage oocytes and spermatozoa from March until October, the elevated GSI of fish may indicate peak gonadal growth during the onset of the dry season (December–January) for eventual spawning from the beginning (May–June) until the end of the wet season (October–November). In both lake habitats, male fish were smaller than females but, regardless of sex, the minimum size‐at‐maturity of fish in Sampaloc Lake was significantly smaller than fish in Taal Lake. Overall, asynchronous development during oogenesis and spermatogenesis allows for year‐round reproduction of silver therapon, with elevated gonad growth in the dry season in preparation for spawning during the wet season. Compared with fish in Taal Lake, a smaller size‐at‐maturity of fish in Sampaloc Lake may be a response of the wild fishery stock to long‐term high fishing mortality and degradation of the lake habitat.
    • Article

      Induction of moulting in hatchery-reared mangrove crab Scylla serrata juveniles through temperature manipulation or autotomy 

      JJY de la Cruz-Huervana, ET Quinitio & VL Corre - Aquaculture Research, 2019 - Wiley
      The effects of temperature and autotomy of chelipeds on survival, growth and moulting of mangrove crab (Scylla serrata) juveniles were investigated under laboratory conditions for 60 days. Hatchery‐produced crabs with 2.0–2.3 cm internal carapace width (1.7–2.2 g body weight) at intermoult stage were exposed to one of four temperature treatments (constant 29, 32 or 35°C, or ambient [24–31°C]) or subjected to cheliped autotomy. All crabs held at 35°C had 100% mortality due to incomplete moulting during first moult. The mean survival of crabs at termination was 58%, 64% and 50% for ambient temperature, 29 and 32°C respectively. Specific growth rate (SGR) of crabs in the ambient and 29°C were comparable but significantly lower than those at 32°C. The moult interval of the crabs was significantly shorter in treatments with constant water temperature of 29 and 32°C compared with ambient temperature. The survival of crabs with intact chelipeds was comparable with those with one or two autotomized chelipeds. Crabs with intact or one autotomized chelipeds had significantly higher SGR than crabs with both chelipeds autotomized in the first moult. On the second moult, however, high SGR was observed in crabs with two chelipeds autotomized. The moult interval was significantly shorter in the autotomized crabs compared with crabs with intact chelipeds. The results suggest that the optimum water temperature for rearing S. serrata juveniles ranges from 29 to 32°C. Likewise, autotomy of chelipeds can promote moulting without adversely affecting survival of crabs.
    • Article

      Insights on the seasonal variations of reproductive features in the eastern Atlantic bluefin tuna 

      O Carnevali, F Maradonna, A Sagrati, M Candelma, F Lombardo, P Pignalosa, E Bonfanti, J Nocillado, P Palma, G Gioacchini & A Elizur - General and Comparative Endocrinology, 2019 - Elsevier
      The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna (ABFT, Thunnus thynnus) is one of the most intensely exploited fisheries resources in the world. In spite of the years of studies on ABFT, basic aspects of its reproductive biology remain uncertain. To gain insight regarding the seasonal changes of the reproductive characteristics of the eastern stock of ABFT, blood and tissue samples were collected from mature specimens caught in the Mediterranean basin during the reproductive (May-June) and non-reproductive season (Oct-Nov). Histological analysis of the gonads of May-June samples indicated that there were females which were actively spawning (contained post-ovulatory follicles) and females that were not actively spawning that had previtellogenic and fully vitellogenic oocytes. In males, testis were at early or late stage of spermatogenesis during the reproductive season. In Oct-Nov, ovaries contained mostly previtellogenic oocytes as well as β and α atretic follicles while the testis predominantly contained spermatogonia and few cysts with spermatocytes and spermatozoa. Gonadosomatic index (GSI) in females was highest among the actively spawning individuals while in males GSI was higher in early and late spermatogenic individuals compared to those that were spent. Plasma sex steroids levels varied with the reproductive season. In females, estradiol (E2), was higher in May-June while testosterone (T) and progesterone (P) did not vary. In males, E2 and T were higher in May-June while P levels were similar at the two sampling points. Circulating follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) was higher in Oct-Nov than in May-June both in males and females. Vitellogenin (VTG) was detected in plasma from both males and females during the reproductive season with levels in females significantly higher than in males. VTG was undetected in Oct-Nov samples. Since choriogenesis is an important event during follicle growth, the expression of three genes involved in vitelline envelope formation and hardening was measured and results showed significantly higher levels in ovaries in fish caught in May-June with respect to those sampled in Oct-Nov. In addition, a set of genes encoding for ion channels that are responsible for oocyte hydration and buoyancy, as well as sperm viability, were characterized at the two time points, and these were found to be more highly expressed in females during the reproductive season. Finally, the expression level of three mRNAs encoding for different lipid-binding proteins was analyzed with significantly higher levels detected in males, suggesting sex-specific expression. Our findings provide additional information on the reproductive biology of ABFT, particularly on biomarkers for the assessment of the state of maturation of the gonad, highlighting gender-specific signals and seasonal differences.
    • Book chapter

      Poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) and infection reduction in farmed aquatic animals 

      JLQ Laranja & P Bossier - In H Goldfine (Ed.), Health Consequences of Microbial Interactions with Hydrocarbons, Oils, and Lipids, 2019 - Springer International Publishing
      There is a continuous effort in finding effective and sustainable strategies to control diseases in farmed animals, and in recent years, the application of the bacterial storage compound poly-β-hydroxybutyrate (PHB) was identified as a new disease control agent for aquaculture. The idea of using PHB as a biocontrol agent was conceived based on the knowledge that this biopolymer can be degraded into short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), and SCFAs are known compounds with antimicrobial properties. At the beginning of this chapter, an overview about the PHB granule, its detection, quantification, production, and recovery in microorganisms is presented. The main topic focuses on the application and beneficial effects of PHB in farmed aquatic animals. The mechanisms by which PHB provides beneficial effects to the host are discussed.