Bee pollen as a dietary supplement for fish: Effect on the reproductive performance of zebrafish and the immunological response of their offspring

Di Chiacchio, I.M., Paiva, I.M., de Abreu, D.J.M., Carvalho, E.E.N., Martínez, P.J., Carvalho, S.M., Mulero, V., Murgas, L.D.S.
Fish & shellfish immunology   119: 300-307 (Journal)
Registered Authors
Mulero, Victor
Bee products, Immunology, Maternal immunity transference, Natural products, Nutrition, Reproduction
MeSH Terms
  • Animal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
  • Animals
  • Bees
  • Diet/veterinary
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Larva
  • Pollen*
  • Reproduction
  • Zebrafish*
34656757 Full text @ Fish Shellfish Immunol.
Bee pollen, a natural resource collected by bees, is rich in many nutrients, therefore it may represent a useful dietary supplement. Different uses of bee pollen are proposed due to its beneficial health properties, which includes the capacity to improve animal performance and promote immunostimulation. Animal nutrition can directly affect adults and their offspring, and larval stage is a critical moment for fish due to high mortality related to immune challenges. Thus, the present study attempted to evaluate the effects of adding bee pollen to a zebrafish diet, specifically, analyzing the effects on reproduction and immunity transference to descendants. Zebrafish adults received control diets based on commercial flakes and live food Artemia sp. nauplii or bee pollen-supplemented diets, administered three times a day, at the same time. The animals received the diets over 60 d, and throughout this period, they were tested for: egg production per female, total number of eggs, embryo viability rate, larval survival rate after exposure to spring viremia of carp virus and to Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium, and larval neutrophil recruitment after tail wounding. Bee pollen supplementation failed to improve egg production and embryo viability, and was unable to substitute flakes in zebrafish breeders. Instead, the offspring of breeders fed with bee pollen supplemented diets showed longer survival upon virus exposure and higher neutrophil migration to wounds. These results indicate that bee pollen can influence vertical immunity through important mechanisms related to offspring immunity in the early stages, when larval immune system is not fully developed.
Genes / Markers
Mutations / Transgenics
Human Disease / Model
Sequence Targeting Reagents
Engineered Foreign Genes