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Research article2015Peer reviewedOpen access

Probing the protective mechanism of poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate against vibriosis by using gnotobiotic Artemia franciscana and Vibrio campbellii as host-pathogen model

Baruah, Kartik; Huy, Tran T.; Norouzitallab, Parisa; Niu, Yufeng; Gupta, Sanjay K.; De Schryver, Peter; Bossier, Peter


The compound poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate (PHB), a polymer of the short chain fatty acid beta-hydroxybutyrate, was shown to protect experimental animals against a variety of bacterial diseases, (including vibriosis in farmed aquatic animals), albeit through undefined mechanisms. Here we aimed at unraveling the underlying mechanism behind the protective effect of PHB against bacterial disease using gnotobiotically-cultured brine shrimp Artemia franciscana and pathogenic Vibrio campbellii as host-pathogen model. The gnotobiotic model system is crucial for such studies because it eliminates any possible microbial interference (naturally present in any type of aquatic environment) in these mechanistic studies and furthermore facilitates the interpretation of the results in terms of a cause effect relationship. We showed clear evidences indicating that PHB conferred protection to Artemia host against V. campbellii by a mechanism of inducing heat shock protein (Hsp) 70. Additionally, our results also showed that this salutary effect of PHB was associated with the generation of protective innate immune responses, especially the prophenoloxidase and transglutaminase immune systems - phenomena possibly mediated by PHB-induced Hsp70. From overall results, we conclude that PHB induces Hsp70 and this induced Hsp70 might contribute in part to the protection of Artemia against pathogenic V. campbellii.

Published in

Scientific Reports
2015, Volume: 5, article number: 9427

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Fish and Aquacultural Science
      Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

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