Special Issue "Current Topics in Fish Immunity"

A special issue of Biology (ISSN 2079-7737).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2015).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Brian Dixon
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Ave. W, Waterloo, Ontario, N2L 3G1, Canada
Interests: fish immunology; environmental immunology; MHC; cytokines; aquaculture
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Fish immunology is rapidly developing into a field of comparative immunology that is on the leading edge discovery of fundamental mechanisms of immunity. For example, the recent discovery of phagocytic B cells in teleost fish was simultaneous with the discovery of the same phenomenon in mice. While the other special issue on fish immunology in Biology “Current Understanding of Fish immune Systems” was conceived as a compendium of knowledge of fish immunity—reviews of each of the basic components of fish immune systems that almost constitute a textbook to guide newcomers to the field into the both unique processes in teleosts, as well as those shared with other vertebrates, this special issue was meant to highlight the current advances in fish immunology research. Thus we have manuscripts covering key topics, such as the Stafford lab discussing what is known about the fascinating molecules known as Leukocyte Immune-Type Receptors, which have many similarities to NK cell receptors, but do not yet have a clear role, as well as a discussion from Esteban et al. on the new cells involved in phagocytosis in teleost fishes. This fish immunity is important for an evolutionary understanding of immune systems.

Fish immunology is a key area of study for industrial applications in aquaculture. This is critically important on a global scale as 50% of the fish consumed world-wide are now produced by aquaculture, which capture fisheries peaked in production 20 years ago. Thus understanding fish immunity is critical if we are to productively combat costly outbreaks of fish diseases. As one can see from reading this issue: fish immunity sometimes works with very different principles that land-based agricultural animals or humans. Technology for delivering vaccines to aquatic organisms that are cultured by the hundreds of thousands, and thus techniques like the use of nanodelivery systems, reviewed here by Ji et al. are critically important for securing the worlds food sources.

In summary this special issue will provide the reader with the cutting edge of knowledge on fish immunity, a critical area to be understood if one wants a full picture of the evolution of immunity or practical ideas for preventing losses of valuable aquaculture species.

Prof. Dr. Brian Dixon
Guest editor

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Published Papers (7 papers)

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Review

Open AccessReview
Biochemical and Functional Insights into the Integrated Regulation of Innate Immune Cell Responses by Teleost Leukocyte Immune-Type Receptors
Biology 2016, 5(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology5010013 - 08 Mar 2016
Cited by 7
Abstract
Across vertebrates, innate immunity consists of a complex assortment of highly specialized cells capable of unleashing potent effector responses designed to destroy or mitigate foreign pathogens. The execution of various innate cellular behaviors such as phagocytosis, degranulation, or cell-mediated cytotoxicity are functionally indistinguishable [...] Read more.
Across vertebrates, innate immunity consists of a complex assortment of highly specialized cells capable of unleashing potent effector responses designed to destroy or mitigate foreign pathogens. The execution of various innate cellular behaviors such as phagocytosis, degranulation, or cell-mediated cytotoxicity are functionally indistinguishable when being performed by immune cells isolated from humans or teleost fishes; vertebrates that diverged from one another more than 450 million years ago. This suggests that vital components of the vertebrate innate defense machinery are conserved and investigating such processes in a range of model systems provides an important opportunity to identify fundamental features of vertebrate immunity. One characteristic that is highly conserved across vertebrate systems is that cellular immune responses are dependent on specialized immunoregulatory receptors that sense environmental stimuli and initiate intracellular cascades that can elicit appropriate effector responses. A wide variety of immunoregulatory receptor families have been extensively studied in mammals, and many have been identified as cell- and function-specific regulators of a range of innate responses. Although much less is known in fish, the growing database of genomic information has recently allowed for the identification of several immunoregulatory receptor gene families in teleosts. Many of these putative immunoregulatory receptors have yet to be assigned any specific role(s), and much of what is known has been based solely on structural and/or phylogenetic relationships with mammalian receptor families. As an attempt to address some of these shortcomings, this review will focus on our growing understanding of the functional roles played by specific members of the channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus) leukocyte immune-type receptors (IpLITRs), which appear to be important regulators of several innate cellular responses via classical as well as unique biochemical signaling networks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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Open AccessReview
Endocrine and Local IGF-I in the Bony Fish Immune System
Biology 2016, 5(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology5010009 - 26 Jan 2016
Cited by 16
Abstract
A role for GH and IGF-I in the modulation of the immune system has been under discussion for decades. Generally, GH is considered a stimulator of innate immune parameters in mammals and teleost fish. The stimulatory effects in humans as well as in [...] Read more.
A role for GH and IGF-I in the modulation of the immune system has been under discussion for decades. Generally, GH is considered a stimulator of innate immune parameters in mammals and teleost fish. The stimulatory effects in humans as well as in bony fish often appear to be correlated with elevated endocrine IGF-I (liver-derived), which has also been shown to be suppressed during infection in some studies. Nevertheless, data are still fragmentary. Some studies point to an important role of GH and IGF-I particularly during immune organ development and constitution. Even less is known about the potential relevance of local (autocrine/paracrine) IGF-I within adult and developing immune organs, and the distinct localization of IGF-I in immune cells and tissues of mammals and fish has not been systematically defined. Thus far, IGF-I has been localized in different mammalian immune cell types, particularly macrophages and granulocytes, and in supporting cells, but not in T-lymphocytes. In the present study, we detected IGF-I in phagocytic cells isolated from rainbow trout head kidney and, in contrast to some findings in mammals, in T-cells of a channel catfish cell line. Thus, although numerous analogies among mammals and teleosts exist not only for the GH/IGF-system, but also for the immune system, there are differences that should be further investigated. For instance, it is unclear whether the primarily reported role of GH/IGF-I in the innate immune response is due to the lack of studies focusing on the adaptive immune system, or whether it truly preferentially concerns innate immune parameters. Infectious challenges in combination with GH/IGF-I manipulations are another important topic that has not been sufficiently addressed to date, particularly with respect to developmental and environmental influences on fish growth and health. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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Open AccessReview
MHC and Evolution in Teleosts
Biology 2016, 5(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology5010006 - 19 Jan 2016
Cited by 35
Abstract
Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules are key players in initiating immune responses towards invading pathogens. Both MHC class I and class II genes are present in teleosts, and, using phylogenetic clustering, sequences from both classes have been classified into various lineages. The polymorphic [...] Read more.
Major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules are key players in initiating immune responses towards invading pathogens. Both MHC class I and class II genes are present in teleosts, and, using phylogenetic clustering, sequences from both classes have been classified into various lineages. The polymorphic and classical MHC class I and class II gene sequences belong to the U and A lineages, respectively. The remaining class I and class II lineages contain nonclassical gene sequences that, despite their non-orthologous nature, may still hold functions similar to their mammalian nonclassical counterparts. However, the fact that several of these nonclassical lineages are only present in some teleost species is puzzling and questions their functional importance. The number of genes within each lineage greatly varies between teleost species. At least some gene expansions seem reasonable, such as the huge MHC class I expansion in Atlantic cod that most likely compensates for the lack of MHC class II and CD4. The evolutionary trigger for similar MHC class I expansions in tilapia, for example, which has a functional MHC class II, is not so apparent. Future studies will provide us with a more detailed understanding in particular of nonclassical MHC gene functions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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Open AccessReview
Phagocytosis in Teleosts. Implications of the New Cells Involved
Biology 2015, 4(4), 907-922; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology4040907 - 04 Dec 2015
Cited by 28
Abstract
Phagocytosis is the process by which cells engulf some solid particles to form internal vesicles known as phagosomes. Phagocytosis is in fact a specific form of endocytosis involving the vesicular interiorization of particles. Phagocytosis is essentially a defensive reaction against infection and invasion [...] Read more.
Phagocytosis is the process by which cells engulf some solid particles to form internal vesicles known as phagosomes. Phagocytosis is in fact a specific form of endocytosis involving the vesicular interiorization of particles. Phagocytosis is essentially a defensive reaction against infection and invasion of the body by foreign substances and, in the immune system, phagocytosis is a major mechanism used to remove pathogens and/or cell debris. For these reasons, phagocytosis in vertebrates has been recognized as a critical component of the innate and adaptive immune responses to pathogens. Furthermore, more recent studies have revealed that phagocytosis is also crucial for tissue homeostasis and remodeling. Professional phagocytes in teleosts are monocyte/macrophages, granulocytes and dendritic cells. Nevertheless, in recent years phagocytic properties have also been attributed to teleost lymphocytes and thrombocytes. The possible implications of such cells on this important biological process, new factors affecting phagocytosis, evasion of phagocytosis or new forms of phagocytosis will be considered and discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
Open AccessReview
Fish Peroxiredoxins and Their Role in Immunity
Biology 2015, 4(4), 860-880; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology4040860 - 27 Nov 2015
Cited by 19
Abstract
Peroxiredoxins (Prxs) are a family of antioxidant enzymes that protect cells from oxidative damage. In addition, Prxs may act as modulators of inflammation, protect against cell death and tumour progression, and facilitate tissue repair after damage. The most studied roles of Prx1 and [...] Read more.
Peroxiredoxins (Prxs) are a family of antioxidant enzymes that protect cells from oxidative damage. In addition, Prxs may act as modulators of inflammation, protect against cell death and tumour progression, and facilitate tissue repair after damage. The most studied roles of Prx1 and Prx2 are immunological. Here we present a review on the effects of some immunostimulant treatments and bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections on the expression of fish Prxs at the gene and/or protein level, and point to their important role in immunity. The Prxs show antioxidant activity as well as a protective effect against infection. Some preliminary data are presented about the role of fish Prx1 and Prx2 in virus resistance although further studies are needed before the role of fish Prx in immunity can be definitively defined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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Open AccessReview
Polish Scientists in Fish Immunology: A Short History
Biology 2015, 4(4), 735-755; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology4040735 - 11 Nov 2015
Cited by 1
Abstract
This review describes the role played by Polish scientists in the field of fish immunology and vaccination starting around 1900. In the early days, most publications were dealing with a description of relevant cells and organs in fish. Functional studies (phagocytosis, antibody response) [...] Read more.
This review describes the role played by Polish scientists in the field of fish immunology and vaccination starting around 1900. In the early days, most publications were dealing with a description of relevant cells and organs in fish. Functional studies (phagocytosis, antibody response) came later starting in the late 1930s. Detailed papers on fish vaccination were published from 1970 onwards. Another important development was the unraveling of neuro-endocrine-immune interactions in the 1970s until today. Around 1980, it became more and more clear how important immunomodulation (stimulation or suppression by environmental factors, food components, drugs) was for fish health. The most recent findings are focusing on the discovery of genetic factors, signaling molecules, and receptors, which play a crucial role in the immune response. It can be concluded, that Polish scientists made considerable contributions to our present understanding of fish immunity and to applications in aquaculture worldwide. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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Open AccessReview
Nanodelivery Systems as New Tools for Immunostimulant or Vaccine Administration: Targeting the Fish Immune System
Biology 2015, 4(4), 664-696; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology4040664 - 19 Oct 2015
Cited by 21
Abstract
Fish disease treatments have progressed significantly over the last few years and have moved from the massive use of antibiotics to the development of vaccines mainly based on inactivated bacteria. Today, the incorporation of immunostimulants and antigens into nanomaterials provide us with new [...] Read more.
Fish disease treatments have progressed significantly over the last few years and have moved from the massive use of antibiotics to the development of vaccines mainly based on inactivated bacteria. Today, the incorporation of immunostimulants and antigens into nanomaterials provide us with new tools to enhance the performance of immunostimulation. Nanoparticles are dispersions or solid particles designed with specific physical properties (size, surface charge, or loading capacity), which allow controlled delivery and therefore improved targeting and stimulation of the immune system. The use of these nanodelivery platforms in fish is in the initial steps of development. Here we review the advances in the application of nanoparticles to fish disease prevention including: the type of biomaterial, the type of immunostimulant or vaccine loaded into the nanoparticles, and how they target the fish immune system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Topics in Fish Immunity)
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