Inter-Research > DAO > v132 > n1 > p37-48  
Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

via Mailchimp

DAO 132:37-48 (2018)  -  DOI:

Diagnosis and treatment of multi-species fish mortality attributed to Enteromyxum leei while in quarantine at a US aquarium

Michael W. Hyatt1,5,*, Thomas B. Waltzek2, Elizabeth A. Kieran3,6, Salvatore Frasca Jr.3, Jan Lovy4

1Adventure Aquarium, Camden, New Jersey 08103, USA
2Wildlife & Aquatic Veterinary Disease Laboratory, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, Gainesville, Florida 32611, USA
3Aquatic, Amphibian and Reptile Pathology Service, Department of Comparative, Diagnostic, and Population Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32610, USA
4Office of Fish & Wildlife Health & Forensics, New Jersey Division of Fish & Wildlife, Oxford, New Jersey 07863, USA
5Present address: Wildlife Conservation Society, New York Aquarium, Brooklyn, NY 11224, USA
6Present address: Arizona Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona 85705, USA
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Enteromyxum leei is an enteric myxozoan parasite of fish. This myxozoan has low host specificity and is the causative agent of myxozoan emaciation disease, known for heavy mortalities and significant financial losses within Mediterranean, Red Sea, and Asian aquaculture industries. The disease has rarely been documented within public aquaria and, to our knowledge, has never been confirmed within the USA. This case report describes an outbreak of E. leei in a population of mixed-species east African/Indo-Pacific marine fish undergoing quarantine at a public aquarium within the USA. Four of 16 different species of fish in the population, each of a different taxonomic family, were confirmed infected by the myxozoan through cloacal flush or intestinal wet mount cytology at necropsy. Clinical and histopathological findings in this case are similar to previous findings describing myxozoan emaciation disease, e.g. severe emaciation, cachexia, enteritis, and death. Sequence analysis of the 18S rDNA of intestinal samples from a powder blue tang Acanthurus leucosternon and an emperor angelfish Pomacanthus imperator confirmed the parasite to have 99-100% identity with other E. leei sequences. Spore morphology and ultrastructure were consistent with previous reports of E. leei. Treatment of clinically affected fish by oral administration of the coccidiostats amprolium and salinomycin led to reduction of mortalities and resolution of clinical signs. This case report highlights the importance of thorough examination and surveillance of fish during quarantine, particularly with respect to enteric myxozoans.

KEY WORDS: Enteromyxum leei · Myxozoan · Myxosporean · Emaciation disease · Amprolium · Salinomycin

Full text in pdf format 
Cite this article as: Hyatt MW, Waltzek TB, Kieran EA, Frasca S Jr, Lovy J (2018) Diagnosis and treatment of multi-species fish mortality attributed to Enteromyxum leei while in quarantine at a US aquarium. Dis Aquat Org 132:37-48.

Export citation
Mail this link - Contents Mailing Lists - RSS
Facebook - - linkedIn