Morphohistology and histopathology of the digestive organs of the deep-water fish greater forkbeard, Phycis blennoides

  • Zakia Alioua
  • Soumia Amira
  • Nesrine Semiane
  • Fatiha Zerouali-Khodja
Keywords: Phycis blennoides, digestive tract, hepatic steatosis, Anisakis simplex, Algeria


The aim of this paper was to report on an examination of the digestive organs in the deep-water fish Phycis blennoides (Brünnich) from Algerian coastal waters. A total of 1,019 specimens (5.7–62.7 cm in total length) obtained from commercial fisheries were examined between December 2013 and May 2017. The anatomical study was conducted using morphometric measurements of different sections of the digestive tract of P. blennoides. The histological features of the digestive tract were examined in the esophagus, stomach, intestine, and pyloric cecum. They were compatible with carnivorous feeding behavior and confirmed by a low intestinal quotient (IQ = 0.72 ± 0.13). The histopathological assessment highlighted the hepatic steatosis and parasitic infestation in its intestine from Anisakis simplex, which also occurs in Algerian coastal waters. According to our knowledge, this paper reports for the first time the morphohistological analysis of the digestive tract of a Phycidae species in Africa and provides the first histopathological assessment of the digestive organs of the greater forkbeard in the southwestern Mediterranean Sea.