Author(s): Bhattacharya S, Chattoraj A, Maitra SK
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Abstract The physiological significance of melatonin in the regulation of annual testicular events in a major carp Catla catla was evaluated through studies on the effects of graded dose (25, 50, or 100 microg/100 g body wt.) of melatonin exogenously administered for different durations (1, 15, or 30 days) and manipulation of the endogenous melatonin system by exposing the fish to constant darkness (DD) or constant light (LL) for 30 days. An identical experimental schedule was followed during the preparatory (February-March), pre-spawning (April-May), spawning (July-August), and post-spawning (September-October) phases of the annual cycle. Irrespective of the reproductive status of the carp, LL suppressed while DD increased the mid-day and mid-night values of melatonin compared to respective controls. Influences of exogenous melatonin varied in relation to the dose and duration of treatment and the reproductive status of the carp. However, testicular response to exogenous melatonin (at 100 microg, for 30 days) and DD in each reproductive phase was almost identical. Notably, precocious testicular maturation occurred in both DD and melatonin-injected fish during the preparatory phase and in LL carps during the pre-spawning phase. In contrast, testicular functions in both the melatonin-treated and DD fish were inhibited during the pre-spawning and spawning phases, while the testes did not respond to any treatment during the post-spawning phase. In conclusion, this study provided the first experimental evidence that melatonin plays a significant role in the regulation of annual testicular events in a sub-tropical surface-dwelling carp Catla catla, but the influence of this pineal hormone on the seasonal activity of testis varies in relation to the reproductive status of the concerned fish.
This article was published in Chronobiol Int
and referenced in Journal of Aquaculture Research & Development