Comparison of effects of vegetable oils blended with southern hemisphere fish oil and decontaminated northern hemisphere fish oil on growth performance, composition and gene expression in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.)
Citation Pratoomyot J, Bendiksen EA, Bell JG & Tocher DR (2008) Comparison of effects of vegetable oils blended with southern hemisphere fish oil and decontaminated northern hemisphere fish oil on growth performance, composition and gene expression in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.). Aquaculture, 280 (1-4), pp. 170-178. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquaculture.2008.04.028
Abstract Replacement of fish oil with sustainable alternatives, such as vegetable oil, in aquaculture diets has to be achieved without compromising the nutritional quality, in terms of n-3 highly unsaturated fatty acid (HUFA) content, of the product. This may be possible if the level of replacement is not too high and oil blends are chosen carefully but, if high levels of fish oil are substituted, a fish oil finishing diet prior to harvest would be required to restore n-3HUFA. However, a decontaminated fish oil would be required to avoid increasing undesirable contaminants. Here we test the hypotheses that blending of rapeseed and soybean oils with southern hemisphere fish oil will have a low impact upon tissue n-3HUFA levels, and that decontamination of fish oil will have no major effect on the nutritional quality of fish oil as a feed ingredient for Atlantic salmon. Salmon (initial weight ~0.8 kg) were fed for 10 weeks with diets in which 60% of fish oil was replaced with blends of soybean, rapeseed and southern hemisphere fish oil (SVO) or 100% decontaminated northern fish oil (DFO) in comparison with a standard northern fish oil diet (FO). Decontamination of the oil was a two-step procedure that included treatment with activated carbon followed by thin film deodorisation. Growth performance and feed efficiency were unaffected by either the SVO or DFO diets despite these having lower gross nutrient and fatty acid digestibilities than the FO diet. There were also no effects on the gross composition of the fish. Liver and, to a lesser extent flesh, lipid levels were lower in fish fed the SVO blends, due to lower proportions of neutral lipids, specifically triacylglycerol. Tissue lipid levels were not affected in fish fed the DFO diet. Reflecting the diet, flesh eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and total n-3 fatty acids were higher, and 18:1n-9 lower, in fish fed DFO than FO, whereas there were no differences in liver fatty acid compositions. Flesh EPA levels were only slightly reduced from about 6% to 5% although docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) was reduced more severely from around 13% to about 7% in fish fed the SVO diets. In contrast, the liver fatty acid compositions showed higher levels of n-3 HUFA, with DHA only reduced from 21% to about 18% and EPA increased from under 8% to 9-10% in fish fed the SVO diets. The evidence suggested that increased liver EPA (and arachidonic acid) was not simply retention, but also conversion of dietary 18:3n-3 and 18:2n-6. Increased HUFA synthesis was supported by increased hepatic expression of fatty acyl desaturases in fish fed the SVO diets. Flesh n-3HUFA levels and desaturase expression was significantly higher in fish fed soybean oil than in fish fed rapeseed oil. In conclusion, partial replacement of fish oil with blends of vegetable oils and southern hemisphere fish oil had minimal impact on HUFA levels in liver, but a greater effect on flesh HUFA levels. Despite lower apparent digestibility, decontamination of fish oil did not significantly impact its nutritional quality for salmon.