OBJECTIVES: In fish aquaculture, disinfectants are used against bacterial and protozoal infections. These compounds cause oxidative stress that may stimulate the generation of reactive oxygen species, and subsequently the alteration in antioxidant systems of exposed organisms. Antioxidants like carotenoids present in microalgae increase carp resistance to oxidative stress after chemical treatment.
DESIGN: The aim of these experiments was to prove increased resistance of common carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) juveniles fed on experimental diets with microalgae biomass supplement (Algadiets) to oxidative stress caused by a disinfectant chloramine-T. In indoor experiments fish were fed on laboratory-prepared extruded diets containing supplement of Chlorella spp. (cf. C. vulgaris Beijerinck) biomass which contains antioxidants (carotenoids) like lutein. The young-of-the-year-old fish were acclimatized and fed on basal diet (control group) and the on diets containing 1, 2, 5 and 10% (w/w) of spray-dried Chlorella biomass (Algadiet 1, 2, 5 and 10) for 14 days followed by 6 weeks. Consequently, fish were treated daily with chloramine-T (Chl-T) at concentration of 10 mg x l(-1) for 1 h in three consecutive days. After this treatment, the indices of oxidative stress and antioxidant enzyme activity were assayed in fish gill, muscle and hepatopancreas.
RESULTS: The fish fed on different Algadiets had increased antioxidant enzyme activities of glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase and catalase in flesh after the exposure to Chl-T. Higher activities of superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase were also observed in the hepatopancreas in all tested concentrations compared to the control group fed on the basal diet. The increased production and activity of antioxidant enzymes confirmed improved protection ability of fish tissues against oxidative damage when microalgae biomass was supplemented to the fish diet which was more pronounced by higher microalgae supplement in Algadiet 5 and 10 where the content of carotenoids was 105 mg and 214 mg per kilogram of fed, respectively.
CONCLUSION: The results show the positive effect of carotenoids from microalgae biomass to maintain the antioxidant capacity which increases resistance of fish to oxidative stress.