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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Griffin, Billy
item Davis, Kenneth
item Schlenk, Daniel

Submitted to: Journal of Aquatic Animal Health
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/23/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Copper Sulfate has been used for many years to treat fish diseases and it has always been assumed that the treatment was a harsh stress on the fish. Before this study was done, little concrete information existed regarding hte level of stress induced by therapeutic exposure to copper sulfate. This study was a simulation of a pond treatment of channel catfish with copper sulfate. Tests of physiological changes in 9 different indicators of stress were made. The resultes suggest that exposure to waterborne copper sulfate as a disease therapeutant is not a seriously stressful treatment and the fish recover to the pretreat condition is slightly over two days after treatment is discontinued.

Technical Abstract: Juvenile channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) were exposed to copper sulfate in a simulated therapeutic treatment episode and changes in physiological stress indicators were monitored during and after the exposure episode. Plasma cortisol concentrations rose throughtout the 24 hour copper sxposure episode and declined when the exposure was discontinued. Plasma glucose concentrations were elevated immediately upon exposure and rose throughout the 24 hour exposure. The peak of glucose concentration was folllowed by a slow decline to the pre-exposure concentration by 78 hours of the study. Plasma lactate concentratios did not change until after exposure was discontinued at 24 hours. Thirty hours after exposure was discontinued, there was a significant increase in plasma lactate. Plasma chlorides were significantly reduced during the course of the 24 hour exposure and remained depressed until 78 hours of the study. No changes were observed in hematocrit values, or in plasma associated aspartate amino trensferase, alanine amino transferase, and lactic dehydrogenase, suggesting that little cellular damage accompanied the simulated treatment episode.

Last Modified: 06/27/2017
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