Publication
Title
Long-term stress induced cortisol downregulation, growth reduction and cardiac remodeling in Atlantic salmon
Author
Abstract
Stress and elevated plasma cortisol in salmonids have been linked with pathological remodeling of the heart and deterioration of fitness and welfare. However, these associations were based on biomarkers that fail to provide a retrospective view of stress. This study is the first whereby the association of long-term stress, using scale cortisol as a chronic stress biomarker, with cardiac morphology and growth performance of wild Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) is made. Growth, heart morphology, plasma and scale cortisol levels, and expression of genes involved in cortisol regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary–interrenal axis of undisturbed fish (control) were compared with those of fish exposed daily to stress for 8 weeks. Though scale cortisol levels showed a time-dependent accumulation in both groups, plasma and scale cortisol levels of stress group fish were 29.1% and 25.0% lower than those of control fish, respectively. These results correlated with the overall upregulation of stress-axis genes involved in the systemic negative feedback of cortisol, and local feedback via 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenases, glucocorticoid and mineralocorticoid receptors in the stress treatment at the hypothalamus and pituitary level. These lower cortisol levels were, however, counterintuitive in terms of the growth performance as stress group fish grew 33.7% slower than control fish, which probably influenced the 8.4% increase in relative ventricle mass in the stress group. Though compact myocardium area between the treatments was comparable, these parameters showed significant linear correlations with scale cortisol levels, indicating the involvement of chronic stress in cardiac remodeling. These findings underscore the importance of scale cortisol as biomarker when associating chronic stress with long-term processes including cardiac remodeling.
Language
English
Source (journal)
The journal of experimental biology. - London, 1930, currens
Publication
London : 2023
ISSN
0022-0949 [print]
1477-9145 [online]
DOI
10.1242/JEB.246504
Volume/pages
226 :22 (2023) , p. 1-14
Article Reference
jeb246504
Pubmed ID
37921456
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (open access)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Record
Identifier
Creation 23.01.2024
Last edited 24.01.2024
To cite this reference