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J Endocrinol. 2006 Jul;190(1):29-37.

Differential expression of two GH receptor mRNAs following temperature change in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).

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  • 1Equipe Croissance et Qualité de la Chair des Poissons, INRA-SCRIBE, IFR 140, Campus Beaulieu, 35000 Rennes, France.


The recent genome duplication in salmonids has led to the presence of two GH receptors (GHRs). As temperature is a determining factor in fish growth, this study aims to determine whether the growth-promoting effect of temperature may be related to a change in GHR gene expression in embryo and juvenile rainbow trout. During embryonic development, using real-time PCR, we showed that high temperatures (12 vs 4 degrees C) increased the amounts of GHR1 transcript up to the hatching stage. By contrast, whatever the stage examined, the levels of GHR2 mRNA were unaffected by the incubation temperature. Nevertheless, incubating eggs with GH led to an enhanced embryo weight only after hatching, suggesting that GHR was not able to mediate the growth-promoting effect of GH before hatching. For juveniles, the GH-binding capacities of fish liver reared at 8, 12 or 16 degrees C revealed that high temperatures led to a lower GH binding. To better understand whether temperature regulates GHR gene expressions independently of nutritional state, fish were reared at 8, 12 or 16 degrees C and either fed ad libitum or with the same ration (1.2% of body weight per day). In the muscle of fish fed ad libitum, a higher rearing temperature increased GHR1 (P<0.001) but not the GHR2 mRNA levels. When the fish were restricted, temperature no longer affected the levels of GHR1 and GHR2 transcript. In the liver of fish fed ad libitum, a higher rearing temperature increased both GHR1 and GHR2 mRNA levels (P<0.001), while in restricted fish, no difference was seen. In conclusion, the two GHR genes are differentially regulated following temperature change and this was related to the period of fish life (embryo or juvenile) and the tissue (liver or muscle). In juveniles, the GHR, by integrating the effect of temperature on plasma GH and nutritional state, could play a key role in the growth-promoting effect of temperature.

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