|EBERLE, KIRSTEN - IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY|
|VENN-WATSON, STEPHANIE - NATIONAL MARINE MAMMAL FOUNDATION|
|JENSEN, ERIC - U.S. NAVY MARINE MAMMAL PROGRAM BIOSCIENCES DIVISION, SPACE AND NAVAL WARFARE SYSTEMS CENTER PACIFIC|
Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/20/2017
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: Both veterinarians caring for bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) in managed populations and researchers monitoring wild populations use blood-based diagnostics to monitor bottlenose dolphin health. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) can be used to assess cytokine expression patterns of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). This can supplement currently available blood tests with information on immune status. Full realization of this potential requires establishment of ranges of cytokine expression levels in bottlenose dolphins. We surveyed four dolphins over the span of seven months by serial bleeds. PBMC were stimulated with phytohaemagglutinin or concanavalin A for 24 or 48 H in vitro. RNA from these cultures was probed by qPCR using Tursiops truncatus-specific primers. Two blood samples from an additional bottlenose dolphin diagnosed with bronchopneumonia add further perspective to the data. The results demonstrate that despite inter-animal differences, the magnitude of mitogenic response generally clusters the tested cytokines into three groups. The data provide a reference for the selection of target cytokine mRNAs and their expected range of responses in future studies.