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Cichlasoma dimerus responds to refeeding with a partial compensatory growth associated with an increment of the feed conversion efficiency and a rapid recovery of GH/IGFs axis

Delgadin, T.H., Simó, I., Pérez Sirkin, D.I., Di Yorio, M.P., Arranz, S.E., Vissio, P.G.
Aquaculture nutrition 2018 v.24 no.4 pp. 1234-1243
Cichlasoma dimerus, compensatory growth, feed conversion, fish, group housing, insulin-like growth factor I, insulin-like growth factor II, liver, messenger RNA, muscles, receptors, refeeding, somatotropin
Many fish species display compensatory growth (CG), a phenomenon by which fasted fish grow faster during refeeding. However, most studies use a group‐housed fish approach that could be problematic in social fish when interaction between individuals is not considered or eliminated. Additionally, the growth hormone (GH)/insulin‐like growth factors’ (IGF‐1 and IGF‐2) axis is implicated in postnatal growth in vertebrates, but its relevance in CG is not fully understood. Thus, the aim of this work was to determine whether CG occurs in a social fish, Cichlasoma dimerus, using an individually held fish approach and secondly, to evaluate the GH/IGFs expression profile during refeeding by 3 days and 3 weeks. C. dimerus showed partial CG. The feed conversion efficiency (FCE) was higher in three‐day‐refed fish, which presented higher GH plasma and mRNA levels than controls but shown no differences in liver and muscle GH receptors (GHR1 and GHR2) and IGFs mRNA levels. Surprisingly, three‐week‐refed fish exhibited GHR1 and IGF‐2 increments, but a reduction in GHR2 expression in muscle. These results show a strong association between GH levels, growth rate and FCE during refeeding, and a long‐lasting effect of refeeding on muscular expression of GHRs and IGF‐2.