DAO 110:123-133 (2014)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02673

Contribution to the DAO Special: 'Microcell parasites of molluscs'

Oyster parasites Bonamia ostreae and B. exitiosa co-occur in Galicia (NW Spain): spatial distribution and infection dynamics

Andrea Ramilo1, Mar González1, María J. Carballal1, Susana Darriba2, Elvira Abollo3, Antonio Villalba1,*

1Centro de Investigacións Mariñas (CIMA), Consellería do Medio Rural e do Mar, Xunta de Galicia, 36620 Vilanova de Arousa, Spain
2Instituto Tecnolóxico para o Control do Medio Mariño de Galicia (INTECMAR), Consellería do Medio Rural e do Mar, Xunta de Galicia, 36611 Vilagarcía de Arousa, Spain
3Centro Tecnológico del Mar—Fundación CETMAR, 36208 Vigo, Spain
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Bonamiosis constrains the flat oyster industry worldwide. The protistan species Bonamia ostreae had been considered solely responsible for this disease in Europe, but the report of B. exitiosa infecting Ostrea edulis 5 yr ago in Galicia (NW Spain), and subsequently in other European countries, raised the question of the relevance of each species in bonamiosis. The spatial distribution of B. exitiosa and B. ostreae in Galicia was addressed by sampling 7 natural O. edulis beds and 3 culture raft areas, up to 3 times in the period 2009 to 2010. B. ostreae infected flat oysters in every natural bed and every raft culture area. True B. exitiosa infections (histological diagnosis) were detected in every raft culture area but only in 2 natural beds, i.e. in 4 rías. PCR-positive results for B. exitiosa were recorded in 4 out of 5 beds where true infections were not found, thus the occurrence of B. exitiosa in those 4 beds cannot be ruled out. Additionally, 4 cohorts of hatchery-produced oyster spat were transferred to a raft to analyse Bonamia spp. infection dynamics through oyster on-growing. The highest percentages of oysters PCR-positive for both Bonamia spp. were recorded in the first months of on-growing; other peaks of PCR-positive diagnosis were successively lower. Differences in the percentage of PCR-positive cases and in the prevalence of true infection between B. exitiosa and B. ostreae through on-growing were not significant. Our results support that B. exitiosa is adapted to infect O. edulis in the Galician marine ecosystem.


KEY WORDS: Bonamiosis · Ostrea edulis · Shellfish culture


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Cite this article as: Ramilo A, González M, Carballal MJ, Darriba S, Abollo E, Villalba A (2014) Oyster parasites Bonamia ostreae and B. exitiosa co-occur in Galicia (NW Spain): spatial distribution and infection dynamics. Dis Aquat Org 110:123-133. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02673

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