DAO 57:265-270 (2003)  -  doi:10.3354/dao057265

Effect of methyl parathion on the susceptibility of shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei to experimental vibriosis

L. Labrie1,2, A. Roque2,*, B. Gomez-Gil2, J. F. Turnbull1

1Institute of Aquaculture, University of Stirling, Stirling FK9 4LA, UK 2Centro de Investigacion en Alimentacion y Desarrollo, A.C., AP 711, CP 82000 Mazatlan, Mexico
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: Following increasing calls for environmental safety over the past 2 decades, persistent pesticides are being replaced by more rapidly degradable products. However, even these pesticides can affect non-target species, and may be associated with slow growth and increased susceptibility to viral and bacterial infections. In this study, juvenile white shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei (also named Penaeus vannamei) were challenged by intramuscular injection with Vibrio parahaemolyticus after 4 d prior exposure to methyl parathion in feed pellets at 0.080 µg g-1. The bacterial injection control group consisted of shrimp fed pellets containing the methyl parathion-carrier solvent acetonitrile. Three additional control groups comprised 2 sterile saline-injection groups fed pellets containing methyl parathion or acetonitrile prior to injection, and 1 uninjected group fed normal pellets. Cumulative mortalities were recorded on the 4th and 8th days, and the presence of histological lesions was recorded on the 8th day. Cumulative mortalities were significantly higher in the group exposed to methyl parathion and bacteria on Day 8. Histological lesions, typical of vibriosis, were significantly associated with the injection of V. parahaemolyticus. The study provides strong experimental evidence that prior exposure to methyl parathion can increase the severity of Vibrio infections.

KEY WORDS: Shrimp · Vibriosis · Methyl parathion · Pesticide

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