Inclusion of sustained-release androgen implants into fertility treatment regimes of female freshwater eels has been proposed to benefit artificial maturation outcomes. This study sought to test whether co-administration of the androgen 17-methyltestosterone (17-MT) in combination with ‘traditional’ hypophysation of female European silver eels would affect egg quality and subsequent larval survival. Implants, containing 1 mg 17-methyltestosterone (17α-methyl-4-androsten-17β-ol-3-one in a matrix of cholesterol:cellulose = 95:5), were administered twice, at 1 and 5 weeks after onset of experimentation (MTA- and MTB-groups); control eels (Ctrl) were given a blank implant. Female eels received weekly injections with carp pituitary homogenates (CPH) from either Week 1 (MTA- and Ctrl groups) or Week 5 onwards (MTB-group). First 4 injections were made with 10 mg CPH/kg body weight (BW) in sterile physiological saline (0.9% NaCl); the subsequent 12 injections with 30 mg/kg CPH and thereafter, 40 mg/kg CPH was injected until fish were considered ready for induction of final maturation. Bi-weekly blood samples were collected (Day 0 onwards) and analyzed for levels of testosterone (T) and estradiol-17β (E2) by radioimmunoassay. After reaching maturity, fertilized eggs were obtained upon spontaneous spawning of co-housed breeders and egg performance (fertilization, hatching, survival rates) was recorded. No differences were observed between eels from the MTA- and MTB-groups; however, egg performance was notably better in eels treated with 17-MT + CPH compared to eels receiving CPH only, with hatching rates reaching mean values as high as around 70% for both 17-MT and CPH co-treated groups, but only averaging 21.0 ± 8.4% for eggs from the Ctrl-group. Furthermore, 17-MT treated eels displayed a more distinct pre-spawning peak for levels of plasma T and E2 and for body weight, the latter being indicative of increased batch fecundity. We conclude that androgen co-treatment holds promise for future development of eel captive breeding technologies. Statement of relevance Artificial propagation of the European eel is increasingly urgent to release the strain on natural populations. This study presents a novel approach to artificial maturation of female eels: centered around the incorporation of androgens during fertility treatment. Accordingly, increased performance was observed in terms of fertilization, hatching and survival rates, which contributes to completing the life cycle of this fish in captivity. © 2017 Elsevier B.V.

Co-treatment with androgens during artificial induction of maturation in female eel, Anguilla anguilla: effects on egg production and early development

GOVONI, NADIA;CASALINI, ANTONIO;EMMANUELE, PIETRO;PARMEGGIANI, ALBAMARIA;MORDENTI, OLIVIERO
2017

Abstract

Inclusion of sustained-release androgen implants into fertility treatment regimes of female freshwater eels has been proposed to benefit artificial maturation outcomes. This study sought to test whether co-administration of the androgen 17-methyltestosterone (17-MT) in combination with ‘traditional’ hypophysation of female European silver eels would affect egg quality and subsequent larval survival. Implants, containing 1 mg 17-methyltestosterone (17α-methyl-4-androsten-17β-ol-3-one in a matrix of cholesterol:cellulose = 95:5), were administered twice, at 1 and 5 weeks after onset of experimentation (MTA- and MTB-groups); control eels (Ctrl) were given a blank implant. Female eels received weekly injections with carp pituitary homogenates (CPH) from either Week 1 (MTA- and Ctrl groups) or Week 5 onwards (MTB-group). First 4 injections were made with 10 mg CPH/kg body weight (BW) in sterile physiological saline (0.9% NaCl); the subsequent 12 injections with 30 mg/kg CPH and thereafter, 40 mg/kg CPH was injected until fish were considered ready for induction of final maturation. Bi-weekly blood samples were collected (Day 0 onwards) and analyzed for levels of testosterone (T) and estradiol-17β (E2) by radioimmunoassay. After reaching maturity, fertilized eggs were obtained upon spontaneous spawning of co-housed breeders and egg performance (fertilization, hatching, survival rates) was recorded. No differences were observed between eels from the MTA- and MTB-groups; however, egg performance was notably better in eels treated with 17-MT + CPH compared to eels receiving CPH only, with hatching rates reaching mean values as high as around 70% for both 17-MT and CPH co-treated groups, but only averaging 21.0 ± 8.4% for eggs from the Ctrl-group. Furthermore, 17-MT treated eels displayed a more distinct pre-spawning peak for levels of plasma T and E2 and for body weight, the latter being indicative of increased batch fecundity. We conclude that androgen co-treatment holds promise for future development of eel captive breeding technologies. Statement of relevance Artificial propagation of the European eel is increasingly urgent to release the strain on natural populations. This study presents a novel approach to artificial maturation of female eels: centered around the incorporation of androgens during fertility treatment. Accordingly, increased performance was observed in terms of fertilization, hatching and survival rates, which contributes to completing the life cycle of this fish in captivity. © 2017 Elsevier B.V.
Di Biase, Andrea; Lokman, P. Mark; Govoni, Nadia; Casalini, Antonio; Emmanuele, Pietro; Parmeggiani, Albamaria; Mordenti, Oliviero
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/611450
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