Meeting Abstract

93.2  Saturday, Jan. 7  Nuclear DNA content variation associated with muscle fiber hypertrophic growth in fishes. JIMENEZ, Ana G.*; KINSEY, Steve T.; University of North Carolina at Wilmington

Muscle fiber hypertrophic growth can lead to an increase in the myonuclear domain (MND), leading to greater diffusion distances within the cytoplasmic volume that each nucleus services. We tested the hypothesis that hypertrophic growth in white muscle of fishes was associated with increases in the mean DNA content of nuclei, which may be a strategy to offset increasing diffusion constraints. DAPI stained chicken erythrocytes standards and image analysis were used to estimate nuclear DNA content in erythrocytes and muscle fibers from seventeen fish species. Mean diploid (2C) values in fish erythrocytes ranged from 0.78 to 7.2 pg. Erythrocyte 2C values were used to determine ploidy level in muscle tissue of small and large size classes of each species. Within each species, mean muscle fiber diameter was greater in the large size class than the small size class, and MND was significantly greater in larger fibers for 11 of the 17 species. Nuclear DNA content per species in muscle ranged from 2 - 64C. Fiber-size dependent increases in ploidy were observed in nine species, which is consistent with our hypothesis and indicates that endoreduplication is occurring during fiber growth. However, two species exhibited significantly lower ploidy in the larger size class, and the mechanistic basis and potential advantage of this ploidy shift is unclear. These results suggest that increases in ploidy may be a common mechanism to compensate for increases in MND associated with fiber hypertrophy in fishes, although it is likely that other factors also affect ploidy changes that occur in muscle during animal growth.