High temperature-induced sterility in the female Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus

Narayan Prasad Pandit, Ramji Kumar Bhandari, Yasuhisa Kobayashi, Masaru Nakamura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


High temperature treatments induce germ cell loss in gonads of vertebrate animals, including fish. It could be a reliable source for induction of sterility if the treatments led to a permanent loss of germ cells. Here we report that heat treatment at 37. °C for 45-60. days caused a complete loss of germ cells in female Nile tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, and that sterility was achieved in fish at all stages of their life cycle. Unlike previous observations, germ cells did not repopulate even after returning them to the water at control conditions suggesting permanent depletion of germ cells. Gonadal somatic cells immunopositive for 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3β-HSD) were clustered at one end of the germ cell depleted gonads close to the blood vessel. Serum level of testosterone, 11-ketotestosterone, and 17β-estradiol was significantly decreased in sterile fish compared to control. Body weight of sterile fish was higher than control fish at the end of experiment. Our observations of increased growth and permanent sterilization in the high temperature-treated fish suggest that this method could be an appropriate and eco-friendly tool for inducing sterility in fish with a higher thermal tolerance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-117
Number of pages8
JournalGeneral and Comparative Endocrinology
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Germ cells
  • High temperature
  • Nile tilapia
  • Sterility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Endocrinology


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