DAO 120:225-230 (2016)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao03036

High prevalence of Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei in shrimps Penaeus monodon and Litopenaeus vannamei sampled from slow growth ponds in India

Narayanan Biju*, Ganesan Sathiyaraj, Mithun Raj, Venu Shanmugam, Babu Baskaran, Umamaheswari Govindan, Gayathri Kumaresan, Karthick Kannan Kasthuriraju, Thampi Sam Raj Yohannan Chellamma

Central Aquaculture Pathology Laboratory, Rajiv Gandhi Centre For Aquaculture (RGCA), TTTAC, MPEDA, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, Sirkali, Nagapattinam, Tamilnadu 609109, India
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Hepatopancreatic microsporidiosis in cultivated Litopenaeus vannamei and Penaeus monodon is caused by the newly emerged pathogen Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei (EHP). It has been detected in shrimp cultured in China, Vietnam and Thailand and is suspected to have occurred in Malaysia and Indonesia and to be associated with severely retarded growth. Due to retarded shrimp growth being reported at farms in the major grow-out states of Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha in India, shrimp were sampled from a total of 235 affected ponds between March 2014 and April 2015 to identify the presence of EHP. PCR and histology detected a high prevalence of EHP in both P. monodon and L. vannamei, and infection was confirmed by in situ hybridization using an EHP-specific DNA probe. Histology revealed basophilic inclusions in hepatopancreas tubule epithelial cells in which EHP was observed at various developmental stages ranging from plasmodia to mature spores. The sequence of a region of the small subunit rDNA gene amplified by PCR was found to be identical to EHP sequences deposited in GenBank. Bioassays confirmed that EHP infection could be transmitted orally to healthy shrimp. Histology also identified bacterial co-infections in EHP-infected shrimp sampled from slow-growth ponds with low-level mortality. The data confirm that hepatopancreatic microsporidiosis caused by EHP is prevalent in shrimp being cultivated in India. EHP infection control measures thus need to be implemented urgently to limit impacts of slowed shrimp growth.


KEY WORDS: Microsporidian · Slow growth · SSU rDNA · Plasmodia · Vibrio · Hepatopancreas · EHP


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Cite this article as: Biju N, Sathiyaraj G, Raj M, Shanmugam V and others (2016) High prevalence of Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei in shrimps Penaeus monodon and Litopenaeus vannamei sampled from slow growth ponds in India. Dis Aquat Org 120:225-230. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao03036

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