Antioxidant responses and lipid peroxidation in gills and erythrocytes of fish (Rhabdosarga sarba) upon exposure to Chattonella marina and hydrogen peroxide: Implications on the cause of fish kills
Chattonella marina, a red tide or harmful algal bloom species, has caused mass fish kills and serious economic loss worldwide, and yet its toxic actions remain highly controversial. Previous studies have shown that this species is able to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS), and therefore postulated that ROS are the causative agents of fish kills. The present study investigates antioxidant responses and lipid peroxidation in gills and erythrocytes of fish (Rhabdosarga sarba) upon exposure to C. marina, compared with responses exposed to equivalent and higher levels of ROS exposure. Even though C. marina can produce a high level of ROS, gills and erythrocytes of sea bream exposed to C. marina for 1 to 6 h showed neither significant induction of antioxidant enzymes nor lipid peroxidation. Antioxidant responses and oxidative damage did not occur as fish mortality began to occur, yet could be induced upon exposure to artificially supplied ROS levels an order of magnitude higher. The result of this study implies that ROS produced by C. marina is not the principal cause of fish kills.