DAO 38:159-161 (1999)  -  doi:10.3354/dao038159

Taura syndrome in Pacific white shrimp Penaeus vannamei cultured in Taiwan

Chien Tu1,*, Hsu-Tien Huang3, Sheng-Hsiung Chuang3, Jung-Ping Hsu3, Shu-Ting Kuo2, Nan-Jung Li1, Tien-Lai Hsu2, Ming-Chang Li4, Shih-Yuh Lin2

1Department of Biological Research and 2Department of Epizootic Research, Taiwan Animal Research Institute, Tansui 251, Taiwan, ROC
3Pingtung Livestock Disease Control Center, 110-1 Shui-Yuan Sec., Pingtung 900, Taiwan, ROC
4Pig Research Institute Taiwan, PO Box 23, Chunan, 35099, Miali, Taiwan, ROC
*Present address: National Institute for Animal Health, Council of Agriculture 376 Chung-Cheng Rd. Tansui 251, Taiwan, ROC. E-mail:

ABSTRACT: Mass mortality of cultured white shrimp in southern Taiwan was diagnosed as an outbreak of Taura syndrome (TS). From late 1998 to early 1999, 90% of the shrimp ponds were abandoned at 30 to 45 d after stocking post larvae from Ecuador and elsewhere. The shrimp began to die within 2 to 3 d after they stopped feeding. There were no other gross signs, except that some affected shrimp had reddened tails. Histologically, multifocal necrosis of the cuticular epithelium was the main lesion. The necrotic foci contained pyknotic and karyorrhectic nuclei, and many lightly and densely stained intracytoplasmic and intercellular, spherical inclusions. By transmission electron microscopy, small, icosahedral, picorna-like virus particles 30 nm in diameter were seen. Taken together, the observations resembled those for outbreaks caused by Taura syndrome virus (TSV). It is assumed that TSV was transferred to Taiwan via contaminated post larvae and spawners from epizootic areas. This is the first report of a TS outbreak in Taiwan.

KEY WORDS: Penaeus vannamei · Taura syndrome · Viral disease · Penaeid shrimp

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