High‐Temperature Stress Effect on the Red Cusk‐Eel (Geypterus chilensis) Liver: Transcriptional Modulation and Oxidative Stress Damage

Phillip Dettleff, Rodrigo Zuloaga, Marcia Fuentes, Pamela Gonzalez, Jorge Aedo, Juan Manuel Estrada, Alfredo Molina, Juan Antonio Valdés

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


Environmental stressors, such as temperature, are relevant factors that could generate a negative effect on several tissues in fish. A key fish species for Chilean aquaculture diversification is the red cusk‐eel (Genypterus chilensis), a native fish for which knowledge on environmental stressors effects is limited. This study evaluated the effects of high‐temperature stress on the liver of red cusk‐eel in control (14 °C) and high‐temperature (19 °C) groups using multiple approaches: determination of plasmatic hepatic enzymes (ALT, AST, and AP), oxidative damage evaluation (AP sites, lipid peroxidation, and carbonylated proteins), and RNA‐seq analysis. High-temperature stress generated a significant increase in hepatic enzyme activity in plasma. In the liver, a transcriptional regulation was observed, with 1239 down‐regulated and 1339 up‐regulated transcripts. Additionally, high‐temperature stress generated oxidative stress in the liver, with oxidative damage and transcriptional modulation of the antioxidant response. Furthermore, an unfolded protein response was observed, with several pathways enriched, as well as a heat shock response, with several heat shock proteins up regulated, suggesting candidate biomarkers (i.e., serpinh1) for thermal stress evaluation in this species. The present study shows that high-temperature stress generated a major effect on the liver of red cusk‐eel, knowledge to consider for the aquaculture and fisheries of this species.

Original languageEnglish
Article number990
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2022


  • hepatic enzymes
  • liver transcriptome
  • oxidative damage
  • protein folding
  • red cusk‐eel
  • RNA‐seq
  • thermal stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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