Effects of dietary linseed oil on innate immune system of Eurasian perch and disease resistance after exposure to Aeromonas salmonicida achromogen

F. Geay, J. Mellery, E. Tinti, Jessica Douxfils, Y. Larondelle, Robert Mandiki, P. Kestemont

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study was designated to investigate the effects of dietary fish oil (FO diet) replacement by linseed oil (LO diet) on regulation of immune response and disease resistance in Eurasian perch (Perca fluviatilis). A control diet containing fish oil (FO = cod liver oil) and characterized by high levels of n-3 high LC-PUFA (6% EPA, 7.5% of total fatty acids (FAs)) was compared to linseed oil diet (LO diet) composed of low LC-PUFA contents (1% EPA, 2.3% DHA of total FAs) but high C18 fatty acids levels. The experiment was conducted in quadruplicate groups of 80 fish each. After 10 weeks of feeding, the innate immune status was evaluated in various organs (liver, spleen, and head-kidney) (feeding condition). Two days later, a bacterial challenge was performed on fish from 2 rearing conditions: fish infected with Aeromonas salmonicida (bacteria condition) and fish injected with sterile medium but maintained in the same flow system that fish challenged with bacteria (sentinel condition). Three days after injection of bacteria, a significant decrease of lymphocyte, thrombocyte and basophil populations was observed while neutrophils were not affected. In addition, plasma lysozyme activity and reactive oxygen species production in kidney significantly increased in fish challenged with A. salmonicida while the plasma alternative complement pathway activity was not affected. Increase of plasma lysozyme activity as well as reactive oxygen species production in spleen and kidney of sentinel fish suggest that these immune defenses can also be activated, but at lower bacteria concentration than infected fish. No differences in leucocyte populations, plasma lysozyme and alternative complement pathway activities were observed between dietary treatments. Similarly, expression of genes related to eicosanoid synthesis in liver were not affected by the dietary oil source but were strongly stimulated in fish challenged with A. salmonicida. These findings demonstrated that the use of linseed oil does not deplete the innate immune system of Eurasian perch juveniles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)782-796
Number of pages15
JournalFish and Shellfish Immunology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2015


  • Aeromonas salmonicida
  • Alternative complement pathway
  • Eicosanoid
  • Eurasian perch
  • Innate immune system
  • Linseed oil
  • Lysozyme
  • Reactive oxygen species


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