β-Glucan enhances respiratory activity of leukocytes suppressed by stress and modulates blood glucose levels in pacu (Piaractus mesopotamicus)

Rafael Estevan Sabioni, Fábio Sabbadin Zanuzzo, Rodrigo Yukihiro Gimbo, Elisabeth Criscuolo Urbinati
Fish Physiology and Biochemistry 2019 December 16
We evaluated the immune response of pacu fed with a β-glucan diet (0.5%) for 10 days. After the feeding period, fish were subjected to handling and 3 h after, inoculated with Aeromonas hydrophila. Fish were sampled before handling (baseline condition), 3, 6, and 24 h and 1 week after inoculation. A higher level of blood glucose was found in fish treated with β-glucan in baseline conditions. Handling and bacterial inoculation increased the circulating levels of cortisol and glucose and promoted the acute inflammatory response (lymphopenia and neutrophilia). β-Glucan prevented the decrease in the respiratory activity of leukocytes observed in the control group at 3 h sampling. β-Glucan did not affect the complement and lysozyme, which were activated 24 h after the bacterial challenge in control fish. A reduction in the number of leukocytes was found in fish treated with β-glucan 1 week after the challenge. We suggest two plausible hypotheses for this event: (1) it could be attributed to a depletion of the immune responses or (2) it could be due to a mobilization of the leukocytes to the spleen for antigen presenting/processing. In general, β-glucan avoided the reduction of the activity of leukocytes after stress and the bacterial challenge and increased the baseline glucose levels. Our findings confirm the immunomodulatory action of glucan and add evidence showing that glucan can have a role in stress response.

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