The effect of maternal thyroxine injection on growth, survival and development of the digestive system of Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, larvae
Noha A. Khalil, Hassan M. M. Khalaf Allah, Mostafa A. Mousa
DOI: 10.4236/abb.2011.25047   PDF    HTML     5,322 Downloads   10,843 Views   Citations


The present study deals with the effect of exogenous treatment of O. niloticus females with L-thyroxine (T4) on the development of the digestive system during larval rearing, and its subsequent effect on larval growth and survival. The development of the digestive tract and accessory glands was investigated histologically and histochemically in the developing O. niloticus larvae, from control and T4-treated spawners. During yolk-sac absorption, the digestive system of the fish underwent further differentiation and the rudimentary alimentary canal became segmented into four different histological regions: the buccopharynx, oesophagus, stomach and intestine. The injection of females O. niloticus with thyroxine (1 or 10 μg T4/g BW) greatly enhanced the development of the digestive tract and accessory glands of larvae as indicated by the quantitative and qualitative changes of the mucus composition from predominantly neutral to a mixture of neutral and acid mucosubstances, or acid mucosubstances occurred during the rearing period for the larvae produced from T4-treated females. This may be due to the direct effect of exogenous thyroxine, which might have been transferred from maternal circulation into the oocytes and larvae, on the synthesis of proteins, which increased with larval development. Thus, thyroxine directly or indirectly improved O. niloticus larval growth, since a marked increase in both, length and weight of larvae occurred during the experimental period. In addition, larvae from treated females also gave a significantly higher survival rate than that of control. It could be concluded that exogenous T4 in maternal circulation might have been transferred into oocytes and larvae. The transferred thyroid hormone appears to play some role in the early development of larvae and may confer a distinct advantage for the growth of the offspring of the Nile tilapia, O. niloticus.

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Khalil, N. , Allah, H. and Mousa, M. (2011) The effect of maternal thyroxine injection on growth, survival and development of the digestive system of Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, larvae. Advances in Bioscience and Biotechnology, 2, 320-329. doi: 10.4236/abb.2011.25047.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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