Dietary effect of apple cider vinegar and propionic acid on immune related transcriptional responses and growth performance in white shrimp, Litopenaeus vannamei

Fish Shellfish Immunol. 2017 Jan;60:65-71. doi: 10.1016/j.fsi.2016.11.030. Epub 2016 Nov 10.


This experiment was conducted to study the effect of various levels of ACV® and Propionic acid (PA) on expression of immune related genes and growth performance in white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei). Three hundred and seventy-five shrimps with an average initial weight of 10.2 ± 0.04 g were collected and acclimatized for two weeks. Five experimental diets including control diet, 0.5% PA diet and 1%, 2% and 4% ACV® diets were applied to feed the shrimps. They were fed 4 times a day with 2.5% of body weight. After 60 days of culture, shrimps fed with ACV® and PA diets showed no significant difference in growth performance. Expression of prophenoloxidase (proPo), lysozyme (Lys), penaeidin-3a (Pen-3a) and Crustin (Cru) genes were determined from hepatopancreas, using the real-time PCR after 15, 30 and 60 days. Expression of Lys and proPo genes was significantly up regulated in shrimps fed with ACV® and PA diets compared to the control group after 30 and 60 days of treatment. After 15 days, Pen-3a gene expression was significantly higher in PA group compared to the control group. Also, shrimps fed with 1% and 4% ACV® and PA diets showed significantly increased expression of Pen-3a after 30 days. In contrast, expression of Cru was significantly down regulated in response to ACV® diets, but, Cru expression in treated shrimps with PA diet was greater than the control group after 30 and 60 days. Overall, the results provided evidence that ACV® could be used as a natural immunostimulant for shrimps in order to adjust and enhance expression of the immune related genes.

Keywords: Apple cider vinegar; Growth performance; Immune genes; Litopenaeus vanname; Propionic acid.

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid / administration & dosage
  • Acetic Acid / immunology*
  • Animal Feed / analysis
  • Animals
  • Diet
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Immunity, Innate*
  • Malus / chemistry*
  • Penaeidae* / genetics
  • Penaeidae* / growth & development
  • Penaeidae* / immunology
  • Propionates / administration & dosage
  • Propionates / immunology*
  • Random Allocation


  • Propionates
  • propionic acid
  • Acetic Acid