Expression of vitellogenin receptor gene in the ovary of wild and captive Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus)

TitleExpression of vitellogenin receptor gene in the ovary of wild and captive Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsPousis, C, Santamaria N, Zupa R, De Giorgi C, Mylonas CC, Bridges CR, de la Gándara F, Vassallo-Agius R, Bello G, Corriero A
JournalAnimal Reproduction Science
Pages101 - 110
KeywordsAtlantic bluefin tuna, Oogenesis, Reproduction, Thunnus thynnus, VgR, Vitellogenesis

The cDNA sequences of vitellogenin receptor proteins (VgR + and VgR -), containing or lacking the O-linked sugar domain, were determined in Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus L.). VgR - gene expression in the ovary was compared in captive-reared and wild Atlantic bluefin tuna during the reproductive cycle. Gonad samples from adult fish were sampled from 2008 to 2010 from stocks reared in captivity at different commercial fattening operations in the Mediterranean Sea and from wild individuals caught either by traditional tuna traps during their migration towards the spawning grounds in the Mediterranean Sea or by the long-line artisanal fishery. In addition, juvenile male and female Atlantic bluefin tuna were sampled from a farming facility, to obtain baseline information and pre-adulthood amounts of VgR -. The total length of VgR + cDNA was 4006 nucleotides (nt) and that of VgR - was 3946nt. Relative amounts of VgR - were greater in juvenile females and in those adults having only previtellogenic oocytes (119±55 and 146±26 folds more than juvenile males, respectively). Amounts of VgR - were less in individuals with yolked oocytes (ripening stage, May-June) and increased after spawning in July (92±20 and 113±13 folds more than juvenile males in ripening and post-spawning fish, respectively). These data suggest that regulation of VgR - is not under oestrogen control. During the ripening period, greater VgR - gene expression was observed in wild fish than in fish reared in captivity, possibly because of (a) differences in water temperature exposure and/or energy storage, and/or (b) an inadequate diet in reared Atlantic bluefin tuna. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


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