1/5 #SeaTurtleTalks #TurtleTuesday Ex-situ #conservation in hatcheries is a successful strategy for the recovery of sea turtle populations; but alters biological systems important for hatchling survival. We assessed the effect of ex-situ management on the IIR in olive ridley
2/5 The innate immune response (IIR) was evaluated by spleen histology and the heterophile/lymphocyte ratio. Additionally, morphometry was performed, gonadal sex was determined and sand temperature was recorded during the incubation period.
3/5 Hatchlings from ex-situ nests were heavier, larger and showed a greater spleen-somatic index. They also showed more and better defined periarteriolar lymphoid sheaths (PALS), as well as a higher H/L ratio than those from in-situ nests.
4/5 Immunological and morphometrical differences were sex-independent and mainly associated to ex-situ conservation. And the better spleen development is associated with antibody production and a better IIR immune response to pathogens in other species.