Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 29, Issue 1, pp 433–447 | Cite as

Effects of dietary Gracilaria sp. and Alaria sp. supplementation on growth performance, metabolic rates and health in meagre (Argyrosomus regius) subjected to pathogen infection

  • Maria João Peixoto
  • Emílio Salas-Leitón
  • Francisca Brito
  • Luís Ferreira Pereira
  • Jon C. Svendsen
  • Teresa Baptista
  • Rui Pereira
  • Helena Abreu
  • Pedro Alexandre Reis
  • José Fernando Magalhães Gonçalves
  • Rodrigo Otávio de Almeida OzórioEmail author


Effects of dietary seaweed supplementation on basal physiology and health biomarkers were assessed in meagre (Argyrosomus regius) subjected to bacterial infection, using Photobacterium damselae subsp. Piscicida (Phdp) as the etiologic agent. Three test diets were prepared by supplementing a basal control formulation (44 % protein, 16 % lipid, 22 kJ g−1 energy) with 0 % seaweed (control), 5 % Gracilaria sp. or 5 % Alaria sp. During the growth trial, 180 fish (39.70 ± 0.33 g) were daily fed for 69 days with the experimental diets. After the growth trial, 60 fish from each dietary treatment were divided into two groups, infected and non-infected. The infected group was injected intraperitoneally with a saline solution (HBSS) with 2.91 x 103 CFU Phdp g−1 fish, whereas the non-infected group was injected with HBSS without Phdp. Dietary seaweed supplementation did not affect fish growth performance. Standard and routine metabolic rates, and aerobic metabolic scope did not vary significantly among dietary treatments. Conversely, maximum metabolic rate was significantly higher in fish fed Alaria sp. diet when compared to control group. Non-infected fish had higher hematocrit levels than the infected group, regardless of diet. Lactate levels were significantly higher in fish fed Alaria sp. diet when compared to control, with no interaction between diet and infection. Lipid peroxidation was significantly higher in fish fed control diet than supplemented diets. Infected groups had lower antioxidant enzymes activities when compared to non-infected. An interaction between infection and diet was found for glutathione peroxidase and reduced glutathione activities. The current study suggests that dietary seaweed supplementation modulates metabolic rates and biomarker responses in meagre, which may confer advantages in coping with biotic stressors.


Rhodophyta, Phaeophyta, fish, aerobic metabolic scope Bacterial infection Immune function Maximum metabolic rate Antioxidants 



The Photobacterium damselae subsp. Piscicida (Phdp) strain AQP17.1 used in the present study was kindly provided by Professor Alicia. E. Toranzo (Departamento de Microbiología y Parasitología, Facultad de Biología, University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain).

This study was carried out under the project SEABIOPLAS (grant agreement n° 606032), funded by the European Union Seventh Framework Program (FP7/2007-2013), as well as partially supported by the Strategic Funding UID/Multi/04423/2013 through national funds provided by Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), in the framework of the program PT2020. Dr. Salas-Leitón was financially supported by Andalusian Operational Program-European Social Fund (2007-2013), axis III, while additional funds were specifically afforded by the Spanish Government - Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte - through “José Castillejo” mobility grant program. This study had also the support of Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT), through the strategic project UID/MAR/04292/2013 granted to MARE. J.C.S. received support from the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) in Portugal [SFRH/BPD/89473/2012].


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maria João Peixoto
    • 1
    • 2
  • Emílio Salas-Leitón
    • 2
    • 3
  • Francisca Brito
    • 2
  • Luís Ferreira Pereira
    • 2
  • Jon C. Svendsen
    • 2
    • 4
  • Teresa Baptista
    • 5
  • Rui Pereira
    • 6
  • Helena Abreu
    • 6
  • Pedro Alexandre Reis
    • 2
  • José Fernando Magalhães Gonçalves
    • 1
    • 2
  • Rodrigo Otávio de Almeida Ozório
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.ICBAS – Instituto de Ciências Biomédicas de Abel SalazarUniversidade do PortoPortoPortugal
  2. 2.CIIMAR – Centro Interdisciplinar de Investigação Marinha e AmbientalUniversidade do PortoPortoPortugal
  3. 3.IFAPA Centro “El Toruño” Consejería de AgriculturaPesca y Desarrollo RuralCádizSpain
  4. 4.National Institute of Aquatic Resources (DTU-Aqua), Section for Ecosystem based Marine ManagementTechnical University of DenmarkCharlottenlundDenmark
  5. 5.MARE - Marine and Environmental Sciences CentreESTM. Polytechnic Institute of LeiriaPenichePortugal
  6. 6.ALGAPLUS, LdaÍlhavoPortugal

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