Hypoxia, a low environmental oxygen level, is a common problem in the ocean globally. Hypoxia has been known to cause disruption to the endocrine system of marine organisms in both laboratory and field studies. Our previous studies have demonstrated the sex-specific response to hypoxia in the neural and reproductive systems of marine fish. In the current report, we aim to study the sex-specific hepatic response of fish at the transcriptome level to hypoxic stress. By using a comparative transcriptome analysis, followed by a systematic bioinformatics analysis including Database for Annotation, Visualization and Integrated Discovery (DAVID) and Ingenuity Pathway Analysis (IPA), we found that hypoxia altered expression of genes related to cell proliferation and apoptosis of hepatocytes, which are associated with human pathologies, such as liver inflammation hepatic steatosis and steatohepatitis. Furthermore, we observed sex-specific responses in the livers of fish through different cell signaling pathways. In female fish, hypoxia causes dysregulation of expression of genes related to impairment in endoplasmic reticulum structure and liver metabolism. In male fish, genes associated with redox homeostasis and fatty acid metabolism were altered by hypoxic stress. The findings of this study support the notion that hypoxia could cause sex-specific changes (hepatic toxicity and changes) in marine fish. Copyright © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
CitationLai, K. P., Tam, N., Wang, S. Y., Lin, X., Chan, T. F., Au, D. W. T., . . . Kong, R. Y. C. (2020). Hypoxia causes sex-specific hepatic toxicity at the transcriptome level in marine medaka (Oryzias melastigma). Aquatic Toxicology, 224. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aquatox.2020.105520
- Hepatic response