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Abstract

The present study was performed to investigate the effects of various levels of dietary Bacillus subtilis and chitosan on the growth performance, non-specific immunity and protection against Vibrio harveyi infection in cobia, Rachycentron canadum. Fish were fed with the control diet and six different experimental diets containing three graded levels of B. subtilis at 2 × 10(10) CFU g(-1) (0.0, 1.0, 2.0 g kg(-1) diet) for each of two levels of chitosan (3.0 and 6.0 g kg(-1) diet). The results of 8 weeks feeding trial showed that the survival rate ranged from 81.3% to 84.0% with no significant difference (P > 0.05). The SGR (%) in the fish fed with dietary treatments was significantly higher than that of the control fish except diet 6 group with 2.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis and 3.0 g kg(-1) chitosan. The serum lysozyme activities were significantly higher in 6.0 g kg(-1) chitosan groups and no significant differences were observed among B. subtilis levels. The serum ACP activities were significantly higher in 3.0 g kg(-1) chitosan groups at 0.0 and 1.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis levels; at low chitosan level, the cobia fed diets with 1.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis had significantly higher serum ACP activity, but at high chitosan level, the cobia fed diets with 2.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis had significantly higher serum ACP activity. The phagocytosis and respiratory burst activity in the fish fed with dietary treatments was significantly higher than that of the control fish except diet 3 group with 6.0 g kg(-1) chitosan. Moreover, fish fed the diet containing 2.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis and 6.0 g kg(-1) chitosan had significantly higher post-challenge survival on the 7th day following V. harveyi infection and post-challenge survival showed clearly the synergistic effect of chitosan and B. subtilis. Based on these results, the combination of 1.0 g kg(-1)B. subtilis and 6.0 g kg(-1) chitosan is optimal for the growth, innate immunity and disease resistance of cobia with an 8-week oral administration.

Research Insights

SupplementHealth OutcomeEffect TypeEffect Size
Bacillus subtilis DE111Improved Post-Challenge SurvivalBeneficial
Large
Bacillus subtilis DE111Improved Serum Acid Phosphatase ActivityBeneficial
Moderate
Bacillus subtilis DE111Improved Survival RateNeutral
Small
Bacillus subtilis DE111Increased Serum Lysozyme ActivityBeneficial
Moderate

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