Data_Sheet_1_Thermal Modulation of Monoamine Levels Influence Fish Stress and Welfare.docx (9.57 MB)

Data_Sheet_1_Thermal Modulation of Monoamine Levels Influence Fish Stress and Welfare.docx

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posted on 03.12.2018 by Nataly Sanhueza, Andrea Donoso, Andrea Aguilar, Rodolfo Farlora, Beatriz Carnicero, Jesús Manuel Míguez, Lluis Tort, Juan Antonio Valdes, Sebastian Boltana

Fish are ectotherm organisms that move through different thermal zones according to their physiological requirements and environmental availability, a behavior known as thermoregulation. Thermoregulation in ectothermic animals is influenced by their ability to effectively respond to thermal variations. While it is known that ectotherms are affected by thermal changes, it remains unknown how physiological and/or metabolic traits are impacted by modifications in the thermal environment. In captivity (land-based infrastructures or nets located in the open sea), fish are often restricted to spatially constant temperature conditions within the containment unit and cannot choose among different thermal conditions for thermoregulation. In order to understand how spatial variation of temperature may affect fish welfare and stress, we designed an experiment using either restricted or wide thermal ranges, looking for changes at hormonal and molecular levels. Also, thermal variability impact on fish behavior was measured. Our results showed that in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), a wide thermal range (ΔT 6.8°C) was associated with significant increases in monoamines hormone levels and in the expression of clock genes. Aggressive and territoriality behavior decreased, positively affecting parameters linked to welfare, such as growth and fin damage. In contrast, a restricted thermal range (ΔT 1.4°C) showed the opposite pattern in all the analyzed parameters, therefore, having detrimental effects on welfare. In conclusion, our results highlight the key role of thermal range amplitude on fish behavior and on interactions with major metabolism-regulating processes, such as hormone performance and molecular regulatory mechanisms that have positive effects on the welfare.

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