The effects of Lepeophtheirus salmonis infections on ...

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Title The effects of Lepeophtheirus salmonis infections on the stress response and immunological status of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar)
Author(s) M. D. Fast, D. M. Muise, R. E. Easy, N. W. Ross, S. C. Johnson
Journal Fish & Shellfish Immunology
Date 2006
Volume 21
Issue 3
Start page 228
End page 241
Abstract This study was conducted to determine the effects of a high level of infection of the parasitic copepod L. salmonis on the stress response and immunological status of Atlantic salmon. An initial low-level initial infection was carried out 14 d prior to a second infection in which twice as many parasites were introduced. Plasma cortisol and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) levels were monitored concurrent to the expression of six immune-related genes over five sample times (9, 21, 26, 33 and 40 days post initial infection, dpii). The mean lice counts on the infected fish increased significantly from the first infection (16.3±1.89 at 9 dpii) to the second (142.8±12.8 at 26 dpii). Plasma cortisol levels increased significantly at 26, 33 and 40 dpii in infected fish compared to controls. Plasma PGE2 levels were significantly higher in infected fish at 9, 33 and 40 dpii, when compared to controls. At 9 dpii, expression of interleukin-1β (IL-1β), tumour necrosis factor-α (TNFα)-like cytokine, major histocompatibility class II (MH II), transforming growth factor-β (TGFβ)-like cytokine and cyclooxygenase-2 genes were increased in infected fish compared to controls. The expression of most of these genes returned to control levels at 21 dpii when the highest expression of the MH class I gene was observed in infected fish (significantly higher than controls). Major histocompatibility class I gene expression remained higher in infected fish at 26 and 33 dpii compared to controls and this was observed for the TNFα-like gene. By 33 dpii, MH class II and TGFβ-like genes had higher expression in infected fish compared to controls. Interleukin-1β and TNFα-like gene were the only genes that showed significantly higher expression in infected fish compared to controls at 40 dpii, while MH class I gene expression was significantly depressed in infected fish at this time. The expression of nearly all immune-related genes studied here increased following initial infection with L. salmonis, however, immunological stimulation did not reduce parasite numbers or protect against re-infection.
DOI 10.1016/j.fsi.2005.11.010

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