Silencing of HIF-1 in WSSV-infected white shrimp: Effect on viral load and antioxidant enzymes

Melissa M. Miranda-Cruz, Jennifer J. Poom-Llamas, José A. Godoy-Lugo, Rudy M. Ortiz, Silvia Gómez-Jiménez, Jesús A. Rosas-Rodríguez, Edgar F. Morán-Palacio, José G. Soñanez-Organis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Hypoxia inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) is a transcriptional factor that induces genes involved in glucose metabolism. HIF-1 is formed by a regulatory α-subunit (HIF-1α) and a constitutive β-subunit (HIF-1β). The white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) induces a shift in glucose metabolism and oxidative stress. HIF-1α is associated with the induction of metabolic changes in tissues of WSSV-infected shrimp. However, the contributions of HIF-1 to viral load and antioxidant responses in WSSV-infected shrimp have been not examined. In this study, the effect of HIF-1 silencing on viral load and the expression and activity of antioxidant enzymes (superoxide dismutase-SOD, glutathione S-transferase-GST, and catalase) along with oxidative damage (lipid peroxidation and protein carbonyl) in tissues of white shrimp infected with the WSSV were studied. The viral load increased in hepatopancreas and muscle after WSSV infection, and the accumulative mortality was of 100% at 72 h post-infection. The expression and activity of SOD, catalase, and GST decreased in each tissue evaluated after WSSV infection. Protein carbonyl concentrations increased in each tissue after WSSV infection, while lipid peroxidation increased in hepatopancreas, but not in muscle. Silencing of HIF-1α decreased the WSSV viral load in hepatopancreas and muscle of infected shrimp along with shrimp mortality. Silencing of HIF-1α ameliorated the antioxidant response in a tissue-specific manner, which translated to a decrease in oxidative damage. These results suggest that HIF-1 is essential for restoring the antioxidant response, which counters the oxidative injury associated with WSSV infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-26
Number of pages8
JournalComparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part - C: Toxicology and Pharmacology
StatePublished - Nov 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by grants from Mexico's National Council for Science and Technology ( CONACYT-220496 ) and The Program for Strengthening Educational Quality (PFCE).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Inc.


  • Antioxidant enzymes
  • Gene expression
  • Gene silencing
  • HIF-1α
  • Viral load
  • WSSV


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