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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 155:79-85 (2023)  -  DOI:

Metagenomic profile of caudal fin morphology of farmed red sea bream Pagrus major

Eitaro Sawayama1,*, Masaya Takahashi1, Shin-Ichi Kitamura2

1Department of Marine Science, College of Bioresource Sciences, Nihon University, Fujisawa, Kanagawa 252-0880, Japan
2Center for Marine Environmental Studies, Ehime University, Ehime 790-8577, Japan
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: The morphology of farm-reared fish often differs from that of their wild counterparts, impacting their market value. Two caudal fin tip shapes, acutely angled and blunted, are recognized in farmed populations of red sea bream Pagrus major. The angled form is preferred by consumers over the blunt since it resembles that of wild fish. Discovering the cause of the blunted tip is crucial to maximizing the commercial value of farmed red sea bream. We hypothesized that the blunt fin tip is the result of opportunistic bacteria and conducted partial 16S rRNA metagenomic barcoding and generated a clone library of the 16S rRNA gene to compare bacterial communities of the 2 fin forms. Metagenomic barcoding revealed an abundance of 5 bacterial genera, Sulfitobacter, Vibrio, Tenacibaculum, Psychrobacter, and an unknown genus of Rhodobacteraceae, on the caudal fin surface. Sulfitobacter was significantly more common on the angled caudal fin than the blunted. Vibrio is the dominant genus on the blunted caudal fin. The clone library identified these genera to species level, and Sulfitobacter sp., Vibrio harveyi, Tenacibaculum maritimum, and Psychrobacter marincola were frequently observed in blunt caudal fins. Our results suggest that opportunistic pathogenic bacteria such as V. harveyi and T. maritimum are not the primary cause of caudal fin malformation, and multiple factors such as combinations of injury, stress, and pathogenic infection may be involved. The reason for the significantly greater occurrence of Sulfitobacter sp. in the angled caudal fin is unknown, and further investigation is needed.

KEY WORDS: Pagrus major · Red sea bream · Fin shape · Caudal fin · Metagenome

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Cite this article as: Sawayama E, Takahashi M, Kitamura SI (2023) Metagenomic profile of caudal fin morphology of farmed red sea bream Pagrus major. Dis Aquat Org 155:79-85.

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