We investigated the feasibility of enhancing the reproduction of steelhead Oncorhynchus mykiss and landlocked Atlantic salmon Salmo salar in lakes where the consumption of alewives Alosa pseudoharengus and other forage fishes containing thiaminase can cause them to become thiamine deficient and thereby reduce the survival of their fry. We evaluated feeding fingerling steelhead excess thiamine hydrochloride (THCl) for 1 or 2 weeks or equimolar amounts of thiamine mononitrate, thiamine-tetrahydrofurfuryl-disulfide, benfotiamine, or dibenzoyl thiamine (DBT). We found minimal internal reserves of thiamine after 6 months. We also compared the ability of injections of thiamine and its analogs to prevent mortality in thiamine-deficient steelhead and Atlantic salmon sac fry and found all forms to be effective, although benfotiamine was the least effective on an equimolar basis. Further, we injected yearling steelhead and found that DBT was tolerated at approximately 11,200 nmol/g of body weight, about 10 times more than thiamine in any other form. When yearling steelhead were injected with near-maximal doses of thiamine hydrochloride and several analogs and then fed a thiamine-deficient diet, DBT was retained for approximately 2 years - in contrast to other forms, which were retained for less than about 6 months. Therefore, these results suggest that neither feeding nor injecting young hatchery salmonids with DBT is likely to enhance their reproduction for more than 2 years after stocking. However, injecting DBT in nearly mature fish (either cultured fish from hatcheries or wild fish captured in lakes) may provide them with enough thiamine to successfully spawn within 2 years even though they consume mainly thiaminase-containing forage fishes. ?? Copyright by the American Fisheries Society 2008.
Additional publication details
Effectiveness and retention of thiamine and its analogs administered to steelhead and landlocked Atlantic salmon