DAO 87:183-197 (2009)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02114

Influence of nutritional state on the progression and severity of mycobacteriosis in striped bass Morone saxatilis

John M. Jacobs1,*, Matt R. Rhodes1, Ana Baya2, Renate Reimschuessel3, Howard Townsend4, Reginal M. Harrell5

1Center for Coastal Environmental Health and Biomolecular Research (CCEHBR)/Cooperative Oxford Lab, NOAA National Ocean Service (NOS), Oxford, Maryland 21654, USA
2Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742, USA
3Center for Veterinary Medicine, US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA), Laurel, Maryland 20708, USA
4Chesapeake Bay Office, NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Oxford, Maryland 21654, USA
5Department of Environmental Science and Technology, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742, USA

ABSTRACT: Challenge studies with Mycobacterium marinum clearly demonstrate that a poor diet affects the progression and severity of mycobacteriosis in striped bass Morone saxatilis. Fish (n = 512 total, wt = 65 ± 15 g) were inoculated intraperitoneally with 104 colony-forming units (CFU) g–1 body weigth (BW) or a physiological saline solution (controls) and evaluated for 8 mo. Inoculated fish fed a low-ration diet (0.15% BW d–1) developed a severe, systemic infection characterized by a high bacterial load (>108 CFU g–1 spleen) and poor granuloma formation, which commonly progressed to mortality by 6 wk. In contrast, inoculated fish fed an adequate ration diet (1% BW d–1) developed classic granulomatous inflammation of reduced severity and total body energy similar to that found in un-inoculated controls (p > 0.05). After 4 wk, fish fed adequate rations maintained an equilibrium state throughout the study period, even though 106 CFU g–1 spleen mycobacteria were consistently cultured. In a second study, reactivation of an acute inflammatory state was demonstrated by placing previously infected fish on reducing diets (0.073% BW d–1). In both studies, the energetic demand of this disease was only appreciable when associated with active, severe, inflammatory states. To our knowledge, this study is the first to demonstrate the interaction of diet and mycobacteriosis in fish.


KEY WORDS: Mycobacteriosis · Nutrition · Disease · Stress · Striped bass


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Cite this article as: Jacobs JM, Rhodes MR, Baya A, Reimschuessel R, Townsend H, Harrell RM (2009) Influence of nutritional state on the progression and severity of mycobacteriosis in striped bass Morone saxatilis. Dis Aquat Org 87:183-197. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao02114

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