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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 48:163-173 (2002)  -  doi:10.3354/dao048163

Iridovirus disease in two ornamental tropical freshwater fishes: African lampeye and dwarf gourami

Chaiwud Sudthongkong, Masato Miyata, Teruo Miyazaki*
*Corresponding author. E-mail:

ABSTRACT: Many species of ornamental freshwater fishes are imported into Japan from all over the world. We found African lampeye Aplocheilichthys normani and dwarf gourami Colisa lalia suffering from an iridovirus infection just after being imported by tropical fish wholesalers from Singapore. African lampeye were cultured on the Indonesian Island of Sumatra and dwarf gourami were cultured in Malaysia before export. Diseased fishes displayed distinct histopathological signs of iridovirus infection: systemic appearance of inclusion body-bearing cells, and necrosis of splenocytes and hematopoietic cells. Electron microscopy revealed viral particles (African lampeye:180 to 200 nm in edge to edge diameter; dwarf gourami: 140 to 150 nm in diameter) in an inclusion body within the cytoplasm of inclusion body-bearing cells as well as in the cytoplasm of necrotized cells. Experimental infection with an iridovirus isolate from African lampeye (ALIV) revealed pathogenicity of ALIV to African lampeye and pearl gourami Trichogaster leeri. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products from ALIV and an iridovirus isolate from dwarf gourami (DGIV) using iridovirus-specific primers were indistinguishable. The nucleotide sequence of PCR products derived from ALIV (696 base pairs) and DGIV (701 base pairs) had 95.3% identity. These results indicate that ALIV and DGIV have a single origin.

KEY WORDS: Tropical iridovirus · African lampeye · Dwarf gourami · Inclusion body-bearing cells · Polymerase chain reaction assay · DNA sequence

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