DAO 84:219-228 (2009)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02057

Route of entry and tissue distribution of Yersinia ruckeri in experimentally infected rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss

E. Tobback1,*, A. Decostere1, K. Hermans1, J. Ryckaert2, L. Duchateau3, F. Haesebrouck1, K. Chiers1

1Department of Pathology, Bacteriology and Avian Diseases, Ghent University, Salisburylaan 133, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium
2Department of Animal Production, Ghent University, Rozier 44, 9000 Ghent, Belgium
3Department of Physiology and Biometrics, Ghent University, Salisburylaan 133, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium

ABSTRACT: Yersinia ruckeri is the causative agent of enteric redmouth disease, which leads to significant losses in salmonid aquaculture worldwide. Despite the significance of the disease, little information is available on the pathogenesis. In this study, the portal of entry was investigated using a contact-exposure infection method in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss with 4 different Y. ruckeri strains. Bacteriological and histological examination revealed the presence of high numbers of bacteria in the gills immediately after infection resulting in a rapid spread of Y. ruckeri in the internal organs. However, only a virulent strain was able to survive and multiply in the host, causing septicaemia and death several days after infection. These findings indicate that gills may be an important site of entry and that Y. ruckeri virulence is related to immune evasion.


KEY WORDS: Yersinia ruckeri · Portal of entry · Virulence · Rainbow trout


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Cite this article as: Tobback E, Decostere A, Hermans K, Ryckaert J, Duchateau L, Haesebrouck F, Chiers K (2009) Route of entry and tissue distribution of Yersinia ruckeri in experimentally infected rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss. Dis Aquat Org 84:219-228. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02057

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