Effects of dietary arginine on endocrine growth factors of channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus. Academic Article uri icon


  • Thyroid (TH) and growth (GH) hormones, and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) are anabolic regulators in fish and responsive to nutrient intake. A study was conducted to determine if previously reported growth effects of dietary arginine (ARG) in channel catfish were related to the activation of endocrine axes. In a first experiment, catfish were fed incremental levels of ARG (0.5 - 4% of diet) for 6 weeks and sampled at 2-week intervals. In a second experiment, fasted (48h) fish were fed a single ration of ARG (0.5 or 4% of diet) and sampled at various intervals (0 to 72h postprandial, PP). Experiment 1 did not reveal any influence of ARG on circulating TH, GH, or IGF-I despite the significantly increased growth of fish fed ARG-enriched diets. In experiment 2, feeding the 4% ARG diet significantly increased the amplitude of pulsatile plasma GH levels and also significantly increased IGF-I mRNA in liver and muscle, (at 2h PP) and plasma IGF-I levels (at 6h PP). Although relatively infrequent sampling failed to reveal alterations in TH or GH levels in response to ARG-induced growth activation, PP high frequency sampling unveiled high amplitude pulsatile GH secretions and may be important in activating IGF production in target tissues. Additionally, expressed and secreted IGF-I exhibited discernible patterns which closely correlate with ARG-induced growth effects in catfish.

published proceedings

  • Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol

author list (cited authors)

  • Pohlenz, C., Buentello, A., Miller, T., Small, B. C., MacKenzie, D. S., & Gatlin, D. M.

citation count

  • 25

complete list of authors

  • Pohlenz, Camilo||Buentello, Alejandro||Miller, Thomas||Small, Brian C||MacKenzie, Duncan S||Gatlin, Delbert M

publication date

  • January 2013