A Follow-up Study of Selected Biomarkers of Health in Cod Gadus Morhua L. Collected from the Southern Baltic off the Polish Coast

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Journal of Fish Diseases

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Selected biomarkers of health were examined in 50 post-spawning cod Gadus morhua collected in November 2015 from the southern Baltic. The biomarkers included condition factor (CF), macroscopic lesions, histopathology of spleen, liver and gonads, and morphometry of follicular atresia and hepatic and splenic melanomacrophage cells (MMC). All fish appeared in good body condition. One fish had a dermal ulcer, and in seven, macroscopic nematodes were noted within body cavity. Microscopic lesions in the liver included biliary myxozoanosis, microsporidial and necrocentric granulomas, parasitic hepatitis, multifocal necrosis, foci of cellular alterations, spongiosis, peliosis and cytoplasmic fibrillar inclusions. The spleen and gonads had microsporidial and/or necrocentric granulomas. Some of the biomarkers showed differences as compared to spawning cod collected in May from the same location in 2012, most importantly values an order of magnitude lower for splenic MMC in post-spawning fish. In post-spawning fish, there were statistically significant correlations between MMC, CF, follicular atresia, parasitic hepatitis and microsporidiosis. This is the first comparison of biomarkers of health in post-spawning and spawning Baltic cod. Future studies need to examine the relationships of biomarkers to levels of pollutants in the environment and in tissues of cod.



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