The anti-microbial and immune boosting effects of milk lactoferrin in the fish

Author : Taherah Mohammadabadi

Lactoferrin is a glycoprotein from the transferrin family and contains N- and C- lobe which bind Fe3+ ion. It is detected in milk of cow, buffalo, camel and other livestock. However camel milk contains highest amount of lactoferrin. Lactoferrin boosts the immune system by protecting the host cells against bacterial and viral infections and inflammations. Activation, proliferation and regulation of the phagocytic action of immune cells are also done by the lactoferrin. The antiviral actions of lactoferrin are against both DNA and RNA viruses and inhibit viral adhesion and entry into cells and binds viral particles. The boosting host immune system by nutritional supplements such as lactoferrin prevents microbial infection into the host cells. It’s proved that immune-stimulants in fish culture are useful because they can improve the immune responses and disease resistance through improving the phagocytic cells function and bactericidal and fungicidal activities. Growth promotion of lymphocytes and the production of macrophages, granulocytes, neutrophil and leucocytes is regulated by lactoferrin. Milk lactoferrin can modulate immune responses to infections; and may be a novel preventative treatment for more infections in human, animal and fish. However, it needs more researches on dosage to confirm its effects against infections in fish.

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