Irradiation of rainbow trout at early life stages results in trans-generational effects including the induction of a bystander effect in non-irradiated fish
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The bystander effect, a non-targeted effect (NTE) of radiation, which describes the response by non-irradiated organisms to signals emitted by irradiated organisms, has been documented in a number of fish species. However transgenerational effects of radiation (including NTE) have yet to be studied in fish. Therefore rainbow trout, which were irradiated as eggs at 48h after fertilisation, eyed eggs, yolk sac larvae or first feeders, were bred to generate a F1 generation and these F1 fish were bred to generate a F2 generation. F1 and F2 fish were swam with non-irradiated bystander fish. Media from explants of F1 eyed eggs, F1 one year old fish gill and F1 two year old fish gill and spleen samples, and F2 two year old gill and spleen samples, as well as from bystander eggs/fish, was used to treat a reporter cell line, which was then assayed for changes in cellular survival/growth. The results were complex and dependent on irradiation history, age (in the case of the F1 generation), and were tissue specific. For example, irradiation of one parent often resulted in effects not seen with irradiation of both parents. This suggests that, unlike mammals, in certain circumstances maternal and paternal irradiation may be equally important. This study also showed that trout can induce a bystander effect 2 generations after irradiation, which further emphasises the importance of the bystander effect in aquatic radiobiology. Given the complex community structure in aquatic ecosystems, these results may have significant implications for environmental radiological protection.
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