Strawberry disease lesions in rainbow trout from ...



Title Strawberry disease lesions in rainbow trout from southern Idaho are associated with DNA from a Rickettsia-like organism
Author(s) S. J. Lloyd, S. E. LaPatra, K. R. Snekvik, S. St-Hilaire, K. D. Cain, D. R. Call
Journal Diseases of Aquatic Organisms
Date 2008
Volume 82
Issue 2
Start page 111
End page 118
Abstract Strawberry disease (SD) in the USA is a skin disorder of unknown aetiology that occurs in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss and is characterized by bright red inflammatory lesions. To identify a candidate bacterial agent responsible for SD, we constructed 16S rDNA libraries from 7 SD lesion samples and 2 apparently healthy skin samples from SD-affected fish. A 16S rDNA sequence highly similar to members of the order Rickettsiales was present in 3 lesion libraries at 1%, 32% and 54% prevalence, but this sequence was not found in either healthy tissue library. Based on phylogenetic analysis, this Rickettsia-like organism (RLO) sequence is most closely related to 16S rDNA sequences of bacteria that may form a novel lineage within the Rickettsiales. We used nested PCR assays to screen 25 SD-affected fish for RLO or Flavobacterium psychrophilum DNA. Sixteen lesion samples were positive for the RLO sequence and 4 of the matched healthy samples were positive resulting in a significant association between SD lesions and presence of RLO DNA. While F. psychrophilum is reportedly associated with 'cold water strawberry disease' in the UK, we found no significant association between SD lesions and the presence of F. psychrophilum DNA. The statistical association between SD lesions and presence of RLO DNA is not proof of aetiology, but these data suggest that RLO may play a role in SD in southern Idaho, USA.
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