Physiological responses of gray mullet Mugil cephalus to low-pH water

We examined changes in the physiological responses of gray mullet Mugil cephalus exposed to acidic seawater (pH 6.0, 6.5, 7.0) and normal seawater (pH 8.0, control) for 15 days. As pH decreased, survival rate and body weight also decreased. Levels of aminotransferase, total protein and triglycerides also differed significantly with changes in pH, presumably due to stress caused by exposure to acidic water. The level of osmotic pressure was significantly higher in the pH 6.0 group than in other groups. Superoxide dismutase was significantly higher in the pH 6.5 and 7.0 groups than in the pH 8.0 group, and glutathione level was lowest in the pH 6.0 group. We conclude that decreasing the pH level of seawater induces a stress response in fish, damaging their ability to control their hematological and osmotic pressure. Antioxidant enzymes are generally sensitive to osmotic stress; in this study, antioxidant activity significantly changed with pH level. These results indicate that physiological stress induced by exposure to acidification reduces survival rates and inhibits growth in M. cephalus.

Moon H.-N., Park J.-H., Park C., Namgung J., Kim K.-H. & Yeo I.-K., 2017. Physiological responses of gray mullet Mugil cephalus to low-pH water. Korean Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (KFAS) 50(2):153-159. Article.

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