A 240-day feeding trial was conducted in a recirculated water system to investigate the effects of dietary vitamin E on the activities of antioxidant enzymes (catalase, CAT; superoxide dismutase, SOD; glutathione peroxidase, GPX) and the composition of fatty acids in abalone, Haliotis discus hannai Ino. Triplicate groups of juvenile abalone (initial weight: 0.71 ± 0.00 g; initial shell length: 15.49 ± 0.04 mm) were fed to satiation one of three semipurified diets containing 0, 50, and 5,000-mg/kg vitamin E, respectively. Abalone were sampled on the 120th day and the 240th day, respectively. There were no significant differences in activities of CAT and SOD in soft body of abalone fed with different levels of dietary vitamin E for 120 days (P > 0.05), but significantly higher activity of GPX was found with 5,000-mg/kg dietary vitamin E (P < 0.05). Activities of CAT and GPX were significantly elevated by dietary vitamin E on the 240th day. The lowest value of 18:1n-9, 18:2n-6 and the highest value of 22:6n-3 in soft body were found with 50 mg/kg dietary vitamin E supplement on the 120th day. On the 240th day, the content of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) in abalone with 50-mg/kg dietary vitamin E supplement was significantly higher than those in the other two treatments (P < 0.05). There were no significant effects of dietary vitamin E on the content of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in abalone during the two sampling periods (P > 0.05). In conclusion, 50-mg/kg dietary vitamin E supplement elevated the activities of antioxidant enzymes and could protect MUFA from peroxidation damage. Excessive dietary vitamin E (5,000 mg/kg) did not serve as an antioxidant any more, but tended to be a pro-oxidant in the soft body of abalone.
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Vol. 26 • No. 3