There is a strong correlation between degraded marine habitats and the prevalence of diseases such as green turtle fibropapillomatosis (GTFP) in coastal populations. In GTFP, small to large tumors grow on the turtle's soft tissues and shell, while internal nodules may also occur. The disease primarily affects juvenile green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) that reside in nearshore waters. As a link has been shown between environmental pollution and immune suppression in a variety of animals, the objective of our research was to compare innate and adaptive immune responsiveness in green sea turtles from a severely degraded and a more pristine habitat, which differ greatly in rates of GTFP. We quantified phagocytosis by flow cytometry and performed in vitro stimulation analysis to measure activity of both the innate and adaptive immune systems in wild-caught Florida green turtles. Sea turtles from the degraded environment, both with and without visible cutaneous tumors, exhibited significantly reduced phagocytosis and stimulation indices than did those from the less polluted environment. Our results suggest that environmental factors may contribute to the development of GTFP and thus can impact the health of sea turtle populations.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 57 • No. 4