Variation in salinity tolerance, gill Na+/K+-ATPase, Na+/K+/2Cl- cotransporter and mitochondria-rich cell distribution in three salmonids Salvelinus namaycush, Salvelinus fontinalis and Salmo salar.J Exp Biol. 2007 Mar; 210(Pt 6):1015-24.JE
We compared seawater tolerance, gill Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase and Na(+)/K(+)/2Cl(-) cotransporter (NKCC) abundance, and mitochondria-rich cell (MRC) morphology of three salmonids, lake trout Salvelinus namaycush, brook trout Salvelinus fontinalis and Atlantic salmon Salmo salar. They were transferred directly from 0 p.p.t. (parts per thousand; freshwater) to 30 p.p.t. seawater, or transferred gradually from 0 to 10, 20 and 30 p.p.t. at 1-week intervals and kept in 30 p.p.t. for 3 weeks. The survival rates of lake trout, brook trout and Atlantic salmon were 80%, 50% and 100% following direct transfer, and 80%, 100% and 100% during gradual transfer, respectively. Plasma Na(+), K(+) and Cl(-) concentrations in surviving lake trout increased rapidly and remained at high levels in 30 p.p.t. of both direct and gradual transfer, whereas those in brook trout showed a transient increase following direct transfer but did not change significantly during gradual transfer. Only minor changes in plasma ions were observed in Atlantic salmon smolts in both direct and gradual transfer. These results suggest that lake trout retains some degree of euryhalinity and that brook trout possesses intermediate euryhalinity between lake trout and Atlantic salmon smolts. Gill Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity of lake trout and brook trout increased in seawater, whereas that of Atlantic salmon smolts was already upregulated in freshwater and remained high after seawater exposure. NKCC abundance was upregulated in parallel with gill Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase activity in each species. Immunocytochemistry with anti-Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase alpha-subunit and anti-NKCC revealed that the two ion transporters were colocalized on the basolateral membrane of gill MRCs. Immunopositive MRCs were distributed on both primary filaments and secondary lamellae in all three species kept in freshwater; following transfer to seawater this pattern did not change in lake trout and brook trout but lamellar MRCs disappeared in Atlantic salmon. Previous studies on several teleost species have suggested that filament and lamellar MRCs would be involved in seawater and freshwater acclimation, respectively. However, our results in lake trout and brook trout suggest that lamellar MRCs could be also functional during seawater acclimation.