Citation Betancor M, Atalah E, Caballero MJ, Benitez-Santana T, Roo J, Montero D & Izquierdo MS (2011) alpha-Tocopherol in weaning diets for European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) improves survival and reduces tissue damage caused by excess dietary DHA contents. Aquaculture Nutrition, 17 (2), pp. e112-e122. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2095.2009.00741.x
Abstract The objective of the present study was to investigate the combined effect of several dietary contents of vitamin E and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), mainly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), on growth, survival, biochemical composition and tissue morphology of sea bass along early development. A feeding experiment was conducted in sea bass larvae using five different diets with the same proximate composition and different ratios of DHA concentrated fish oil [10, 30 and 50 g kg-1 dry weight (DW)] and vitamin E (-tocopherol acetate) (1500 and 3000 mg kg-1 DW). DHA was readily deposited in fish tissues and associated with higher sea bass mortalities probably because of increased peroxidation risks. Besides, the elevation of dietary DHA contents up to 5% severely increased the incidence of muscular lesions and the presence of ceroid pigment within hepatocytes. However, elevation of dietary vitamin E levels markedly reduced the incidence of these symptoms in sea bass, increasing the tissue content in several PUFA and improving growth and stress resistance. Moreover, when sea bass was fed diets containing high vitamin E levels, fish showed a significant improvement in growth when dietary DHA was raised from 1% to 3%. Therefore, in sea bass larvae, a ratio of 30 g kg-1 DHA and 3000 mg kg-1 vitamin E seems to be adequate to achieve a good larval performance and to avoid muscular lesions.