Ontogeny of the digestive tract of thick lipped grey mullet (Chelon labrosus) larvae reared in "mesocosms"

Type Article
Date 2008-07
Language English
Author(s) Zouiten Dora1, Ben Khemis I1, Besbes R1, Cahu Chantal2
Affiliation(s) 1 : INSTM, Lab Aquaculture, Monastir, Tunisia.
2 : INRA Ifremer Nutr Poissons, Unite Mixte, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
Source Aquaculture (0044-8486) (Elsevier), 2008-07 , Vol. 279 , N. 1-4 , P. 166-172
DOI 10.1016/j.aquaculture.2008.03.039
WOS© Times Cited 38
Keyword(s) Pancreatic enzymes, Intestinal enzymes, Fish larvae, Mesocosm, Chelan labrosus
Abstract This work describes the ontogeny of the digestive tract in thick lipped grey mullet (Chelon labrosus) larvae reared until day 36 post-hatching with the semi-extensive technology in mesocosms. Diet was constituted by live preys, rotifers, Arternia and wild zooplankton, then compound diet was added from day 20 (p. h.). Linear growth, weight growth and digestive enzymes specific activities were studied during larval ontogeny. Pancreatic enzymes (trypsin and amylase) and intestinal enzymes (leucine-alanine peptidase "Leu-ala", aminopeptidase N "AN" and alkaline phosphatase "AP") were assayed in larvae sampled throughout the rearing trial to evaluate gastrointestinal maturation along the development.

The trypsin specific activities were very high during the first two weeks and then declined as observed in marine fish species. A following increase in trypsin specific activity from day 20 was attributed notably to ingestion of particle compound diet. In contrast to the pattern generally described in fish larvae, amylase specific activity showed a continuous increase. This could be attributed to the fact that C. labrosus is an omnivorous species and suggests that the fish might be able to use efficiently diets containing higher levels of starch or other carbohydrates since the end of larval development.

Relative expression of intestinal brush border membrane enzymes (AP and AN) and cytosolic enzyme (Leu-ala), showed an abrupt increase of both AP/leu-ala and AN/leu-ala ratios at day 8 (p. h.), indicating that maturation of intestinal tract in C. labrosus larvae is particularly precocious. It is assumed that larvae of C. labrosus might support early co-feeding and weaning strategies, which could reasonably be initiated since mouth opening. (c) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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