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WOLKERS, H., F. BOILY, J. FINK-GREMMELS, B. VAN BAVEL, M.O. HAMMILL, R. PRIMICERIO, 2008. Tissue-specific contaminant accumulation and associated effects on hepatic serum analytes and cytochrome P450 enzyme activities in hooded seals (Cystophora cristata) from the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol., 56(2):360-370 .
The current study aims to assess contaminant levels and tissue burdens in hooded seal (Cystophora cristata) blubber, liver, and blood in association with cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes (CYP1A and -3A) and serum analytes (hepatic enzymes like alanine aminotransferase [ALT], aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase [AP], and γ-glutamyltransferase [GGT], serum proteins, and creatine kinase). Contaminant accumulation levels and patterns of polychlorinated biphenyls, chlorinated pesticides, and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) differed between tissues and seal groups, with the highest levels in liver. Pups showed higher liver contaminant levels, especially for PBDEs, than adults. These high levels might be associated with the ingestion of large amounts of contaminated milk and subsequent accumulation in the liver. Adult males and females mainly differed in PBDE levels, which were higher in females, possibly due to a sex-specific diet. The association between blubber contaminant burdens and the diagnostic enzymes ALT, GGT, and AP, and serum albumin, was inconclusive. In contrast, several CYP isoenzymes showed a clear positive relationship with the overall blubber contaminant burden, indicating enzyme induction following exposure to polyhalogenated hydrocarbons. Therefore, liver CYP isoenzymes may serve as a sensitive biomarker for long-term exposure to polyhalogenated hydrocarbons.©2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
BOILY, F., S. BEAUDOIN, L.N. MEASURES, 2006. Hematology and serum chemistry of harp (Phoca groenlandica) and hooded seals (Cystophora cristata) during the breeding season, in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canada. J. Wildl. Dis., 42(1): 115-132 .
Standard hematologic and serum chemistry parameters were determined from 28 harp seals (>i>Phoca groenlandica) and 20 hooded seals (Cystophora cristata) sampled from 6 March 2001 to 13 March 2001 during the breeding season. Whole blood was collected immediately postmortem from harp seal motherpup pairs and from six hooded seal pups, and from live-captured adult hooded seals and three hooded seal pups; blood was analyzed within 24 hr at a local human hospital. A certified veterinary laboratory validated subsamples of whole blood and analyzed all serum chemistry parameters. Significant interlaboratory differences in mean values of packed cell volume (PCV) and mean cell volume (MCV) were found. Significant differences were found between samples from the five seal groups (adult male hooded seals, lactating female hooded seals, unweaned hooded seal pups; lactating female harp seals, and unweaned harp seal pups) for hematology and most serum chemistry parameters. In general, age-class influenced mean values of PCV, hemoglobin (HB), red blood cell (RBC) counts, MCV, mean cell hemoglobin (MCH), mean cell hemoglobin concentration (MCHC), and nucleated red blood cell (NRBC) counts per 100 leucocytes, but most age-related variations were species specific. Harp seal pups had significantly lower mean values of HB, PCV, MCH, and MCHC than did other seal groups, and significantly lower mean RBC counts than did hooded seal pups. Mean NRBC counts per 100 leukocytes were more than three times higher in harp seal pups than in hooded seal pups, but this difference was not statistically significant. Mean MCV were significantly lower in harp and hooded seal pups compared to those of adult harp and hooded seals. Differences in hemograms between pup species were likely because of the precocious development of hooded seal pups, which are weaned within 4 days, compared to 12 days for harp seal pups. Among adult seal groups, male hooded seals had significantly higher mean values of PCV and HB than did female harp and hooded seals, and significantly higher mean RBC counts than did adult female hooded seals. Among adult females, mean values of MCH and MCHC were statistically higher in hooded seals than in harp seals. Adult female harp and hooded seals did not differ significantly in other RBC parameters and mean leukocyte counts. Mean values of glucose, blood urea nitrogen, total bilirubin, alanine aminotransferase (ALT), alkaline phosphatase (ALP), total protein, and albumin showed species-specific variations between adults and pups. Except for ALP, few significant differences in mean enzyme activities of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), ALT, creatine kinase and -glutamyltransferase were found between seal groups. Mean concentrations of electrolytes (calcium, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, chloride, magnesium, and total carbon dioxide) varied with age class, but variations in potassium and magnesium were species specific. Harp seal pups had significantly higher mean phosphorus and potassium levels compared to other seal groups.© 2006 Wildlife Disease Association
MARCOGLIESE, D.J., F. BOILY, M. HAMMILL, 1996. Distribution and abundance of stomach nematodes (Anisakidae) among grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) and harp seals (Phoca groenlandica) in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci., 53: 2829-2836 .
In grey seal (Halichoerus grypus) stomachs, nematodes in order of decreasing abundance were, Contracaecum osculatum, Pseudoterranova decipiens, Anisakis simplex, and Phocascaris spp.; P. decipiens and C. osculatum were more abundant than in previous surveys in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Abundance of P. decipiens increased and those of C. osculatum, A. simplex, and Phocascaris spp. decreased along a north-south gradient in the Gulf. Adults were common among P. decipiens and Phocascaris spp. and rare among C. osculatum and A. simplex. Among grey seals from Anticosti Island, abundances of P. decipiens decreased and those of C. osculatum and Phocascaris spp. increased between 1988 and 1992. Abundances of P. decipiens and C. osculatum increased with host age in 1988 and 1992. There was no evidence of displacement of P. decipiens by C. osculatum. The same four parasites occurred in harp seals (Phoca groenlandica), with C. osculatum showing an increase compared with earlier surveys. Abundance and prevalence of P. decipiens were low in harp seals, with few mature individuals. Harp seals are not considered important hosts for P. decipiens in this area. Temporal and spatial changes in abundance of P. decipiens and C. osculatum in the Gulf of St. Lawrence are attributed to an increase in the size of seal populations and a concomitant decrease in mean water temperature.
BOILY, F., D.J. MARCOGLIESE, 1995. Geographical variations in abundance of larval anisakine nematods in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) and American plaice (Hippoglossoides platessoides) from the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci., 52 (Suppl. 1): 105-115 .
GOSSELIN, J.-F., F. BOILY, 1994. Unusual southern occurence of a juvenile bearded seal, Erignathus barbatus, in the St. Lawrence Estuary, Canada. Mar. Mamm. Sci., 10: 480-483 .
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