Fish Physiology and Biochemistry

, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 67–73 | Cite as

Plasma growth hormone levels in fed and fasted rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) are decreased following handling stress

  • K. J. Farbridge
  • J. F. Leatherland


Plasma growth hormone concentrations of rainbow trout,Oncorhynchus mykiss, fasted for six weeks, were significantly (p < 0.01) higher than in comparable fed animals; in the fasted fish, the levels fell progressively following acute stress (by displacing the fish within their home aquarium), with significant differences from pre-stressed fish evident between one and thirty-two hours after application of the stressor. Plasma growth hormone concentrations also fell significantly in the fed group, but differences were evident only between two and eight hours after stressor application.

Plasma cortisol concentrations in pre- and post-stressed fed and fasted fish were similar. There was a bimodal response to stressor application in both groups, with significantly higher values relative to the pre-stressed sample evident one and eight hours after disturbance, but not after two, four or thirty-two hours. The changes in plasma cortisol levels between the initial (09:00h) sample and the sample taken eight hours later resembles the diet pattern seen in trout given access to self-demand feeders.

Plasma glucose concentrations in pre-stressed fed animals were higher than in pre-stressed fasted fish. This relationship was also evident between one and four hours and thirty-two hours after stressor application. The post-stress rise in plasma glucose concentration was evident between one and four hours in the fed group, and between four and eight hours in fasted fish.

The diel changes in plasma growth hormone and glucose concentrations could not be attributed to normal circadian patterns, and there was no apparent correlation between changes in plasma growth hormone and cortisol concentrations. There was a significant inverse correlation between plasma glucose and growth hormone concentrations when the total data set were analyzed, but these correlations were not apparent when the treatment groups were analyzed separately.


stress growth hormone cortisol glucose rainbow trout fasting 


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Copyright information

© Kugler Publications 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. J. Farbridge
    • 1
  • J. F. Leatherland
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Ichthyology, Department of ZoologyUniversity of GuelphGuelphCanada

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