DAO 38:135-142 (1999)  -  doi:10.3354/dao038135

Proliferative lesions in swimbladder of Japanese medaka Oryzias latipes and guppy Poecilia reticulata

John W. Fournie1,*, William E. Hawkins2, William W. Walker1

1U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory, Gulf Ecology Division, 1 Sabine Island Drive, Gulf Breeze, Florida 32561, USA
2Department of Coastal Sciences, Institute of Marine Sciences, University of Southern Mississippi, PO Box 7000, Ocean Springs, Mississippi 39566, USA

ABSTRACT: Thirteen cases of proliferative lesions of the swimbladder were encountered in Japanese medaka Oryzias latipes and guppy Poecilia reticulata from about 10000 medaka and 5000 guppies used in carcinogenicity tests and histologically examined. Two of the 4 cases from medaka and 8 of the 9 from guppies occurred in untreated control specimens. The lesions affected the gas gland epithelium and included hyperplasia, adenoma, and adenocarcinoma. One medaka had hyperplasia of the gas gland epithelium and in 1 guppy the gland was enlarged with an increase in the number of epithelial layers. Gas gland adenomas, 3 cases in medaka and 1 in the guppy, were typically larger than the hyperplastic lesions, formed expansive masses up to 1 mm in greatest dimension, and exhibited a solid or glandular growth pattern and mild cellular pleomorphism. Adenocarcinoma was the most advanced lesion and all 7 cases occurred in guppies. Adenocarcinomas sometimes filled the entire swimbladder and measured up to 2.5 mm in diameter. Cells of adenocarcinomas were highly pleomorphic, with atypical nuclei, and an elevated mitotic activity. Because most of these tumors occurred in fish from control groups or in tests with noncarcinogenic compounds, the lesions observed here are probably spontaneous rather than chemically induced. Their rare occurrence, however, makes swimbladder proliferative lesions in small-fish carcinogenesis models sensitive indicators of compounds that might target cells of the gas gland.


KEY WORDS: Fish · Swimbladder · Neoplasia · Carcinogenesis · Medaka · Guppy


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