The nuclear phenotypic plasticity observed in fish during rRNA regulation entails Cajal bodies dynamics

Marco Alvarez, Gino Nardocci, Marc Thiry, Rodrigo Alvarez, Mauricio Reyes, Alfredo Molina, M. Ines Vera*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Cajal bodies (CBs) are small mobile organelles found throughout the nucleoplasm of animal and plant cells. The dynamics of these organelles involves interactions with the nucleolus. The later has been found to play a substantial role in the compensatory response that evolved in eurythermal fish to adapt to the cyclic seasonal habitat changes, i.e., temperature and photoperiod. Contrary to being constitutive, rRNA synthesis is dramatically regulated between summer and winter, thus affecting ribosomal biogenesis which plays a central role in the acclimatization process. To examine whether CBs, up to now, never described in fish, were also sustaining the phenotypic plasticity observed in nuclei of fish undergoing seasonal acclimatization, we identified these organelles both, by transmission electronic microscopy and immunodetection with the marker protein p80-coilin. We found transcripts in all tissues analyzed. Furthermore we assessed that p80-coilin gene expression was always higher in summer-acclimatized fish when compared to that adapted to the cold season, indicating that p80-coilin expression is modulated upon seasonal acclimatization. Concurrently, CBs were more frequently found in summer-acclimatized carp which suggests that the organization of CBs is involved in adaptive processes and contribute to the phenotypic plasticity of fish cell nuclei observed concomitantly with profound reprogramming of nucleolar components and regulation of ribosomal rRNAs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40-45
Number of pages6
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - 17 Aug 2007
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work received financial support from FONDECYT 1040197 and 7040132, DI-24-02/45-04 from the Research Fund of Universidad Andres Bello and ICM P04-071-F (MIDEPLAN) and by the “Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique Médicale” (Grant 3.4540.06, Belgium) to M. Thiry.


  • Cajal bodies
  • Carp
  • Coilin
  • Seasonal adaptation


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