Physiological alterations following severe hypoxic stress in two species of fresh-water fish Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/r207ts428

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  • Bluegill sunfish, Lepomia macrochirus, and cutthroat trout, Salmo clarki, were exposed to a rapidly declining oxygen tension for a period of time sufficient to just cause loss of equilibrium in the fish. During recovery from the stress, measurements of oxygen uptake, blood lactic acid, blood glucose, liver glycogen, muscle glycogen, and hemoglobin or red blood cell counts were made at fixed intervals of time. Hypoxic stress caused an immediate rise in blood lactate and oxygen uptake in both species with the trout showing the greatest increases. This suggests a greater degree of oxygen debt in the latter, even though the stress routine used on this species was not as prolonged. A delayed peak in the blood lactate observed in the trout but not in the bluegill indicated a possible impairment of circulatory function in the former. The blood lactate returned to normal after two and five hours in the bluegill and cutthroat respectively. The return of the oxygen uptake to control levels required eight and ten hours respectively. An immediate mobilization of the carbohydrate stores occurred during the stress in both the bluegill and trout. The blood glucose concentration rose greatly in the bluegill but not in the trout. Mobilization of liver glycogen in the trout without a concomitant rise in glucose suggested utilization of the latter as rapidly as it was formed. During recovery from the hypoxic stress, resynthesis of glycogen stores occurred much more quickly in the bluegills than trout. Significant changes in hemoglobin or red blood cell numbers did not occur in either species indicating no change in blood water content, or effect on hemopoetic tissues resulting from the stress. It was concluded that the differences observed between these two species point to possible mechanisms in the bluegill which help it to tolerate acute hypoxic conditions better than the trout.
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