Social effects on AVT and CRF systems

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Year of Publication:
Tobias Backström, Per-Ove Thörnqvist, Svante Winberg
Fish Physiology and Biochemistry
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Stress and aggression have negative effects on fish welfare and productivity in aquaculture. Thus, research to understand aggression and stress in farmed fish is required. The neuropeptides arginine-vasotocin (AVT) and corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) are involved in the control of stress and aggression. Therefore, we investigated the effect of agonistic interactions on the gene expression of AVT, CRF and their receptors in juvenile rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). The social interactions lead to a clear dominant-subordinate relationship with dominant fish feeding more and being more aggressive. Subordinate fish had an upregulation of the AVT receptor (AVT-R), an upregulation of CRF mRNA levels, and higher plasma cortisol levels. The attenuating effect of AVT on aggression in rainbow trout is proposed to be mediated by AVT-R, and the attenuating effect of the CRF system is proposed to be mediated by CRF.


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