2018 Volume 80 Issue 4 Pages 601-605
Cetacean health may be potentially affected by anthropogenic sound. We have initiated investigations on the effect of low-frequency underwater sound on immunological gene transcript profiles of captive bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) using a probe-based quantitative gene expression assay. Six immunologic genes (IL-2Rα, -4, -10, -12, TNFα and IFNγ) were selected for analysis using two validated housekeeping genes (PGK1 and HPRT1) as reference genes. Twenty-four blood samples from six clinically healthy individuals and six blood samples from individuals after sound exposures were available. The gene transcript profile of sound-exposed dolphins was consistent with a stress-induced TH2 shift profile as compared to controls. This study may lead to better understanding of the effects of anthropogenic sound on immune responses of cetaceans.