Negligible differences in metabolism and thermal tolerance between diploid and triploid Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar)
Bowden, AJ and Andrewartha, SJ and Elliott, NG and Frappell, PB and Clark, TD, Negligible differences in metabolism and thermal tolerance between diploid and triploid Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), Journal of Experimental Biology, 221 Article jeb.166975. ISSN 0022-0949 (2018) [Refereed Article]
The mechanisms that underlie thermal tolerance in aquatic ectotherms remain unresolved. Triploid fish have been reported to exhibit lower thermal tolerance than diploids, offering a potential model organism to better understand the physiological drivers of thermal tolerance. Here, we compared triploid and diploid juvenile Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) in freshwater to investigate the proposed link between aerobic capacity and thermal tolerance. We measured specific growth rates (SGR) and resting (aerobic) metabolic rates (RMR) in freshwater at 3, 7 and 9 weeks of acclimation to either 10, 14 or 18°C. Additionally, maximum metabolic rates (MMR) were measured at 3 and 7 weeks of acclimation, and critical thermal maxima (CTmax) were measured at 9 weeks. Mass, SGR, and RMR differed between ploidies across all temperatures at the beginning of the acclimation period, but all three metrics converged between ploidies by week 7. Aerobic scope (MMR – RMR) remained consistent across ploidies, acclimation temperatures, and time. At 9 weeks, CTmax was independent of ploidy, but correlated positively with acclimation temperature despite the similar aerobic scope between acclimation groups. Our findings suggest that acute thermal tolerance is not modulated by aerobic scope, and the altered genome of triploid Atlantic salmon does not translate to reduced thermal tolerance of juvenile fish in freshwater.