Effect of the dietary inclusion of soybean components on the innate immune system in zebrafish

Pamela Fuentes-Appelgren, Rafael Opazo, Luis Barros, Carmen G. Feijoó, Victoria Urzúa, Jaime Romero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Some components of plant-based meals, such as saponins and vegetal proteins, have been proposed as inducers of intestinal inflammation in some fish. However, the molecular and cellular bases for this phenomenon have not been reported. In this work, zebrafish were used as a model to evaluate the effects of individual soybean meal components, such as saponins and soy proteins. Zebrafish larvae fed a fish meal feed containing soy components were assessed according to low and high inclusion levels. The granulocytes associated with the digestive tract and the induction of genes related to the immune system were quantitated as markers of the effects of the dietary components. A significant increase in the number of granulocytes was observed after feeding fish diets containing high saponin or soy protein contents. These dietary components also induced the expression of genes related to the innate immune system, including myeloid-specific peroxidase, as well as the complement protein and cytokines. These results reveal the influence of dietary components on the stimulation of the immune system. These observations could be significant to understanding the contributions of saponin and soy protein to the onset of enteritis in aqua-cultured fish, and this knowledge may aid in defining the role of the innate immune system in other inflammatory diseases involving dietary components in mammals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-49
Number of pages9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Developmental Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of the dietary inclusion of soybean components on the innate immune system in zebrafish'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this