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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 72:147-151 (2006)  -  doi:10.3354/dao072147

Pathological and molecular studies on mycobacteriosis of milkfish Chanos chanos in Taiwan

Tsung-Chou Chang1, Chia-Yu Hsieh1, Ching-Dong Chang1, Ying-Ling Shen1, Kwo-Ching Huang2, Chien Tu3, Li-Chun Chen4, Zong-Bing Wu1, Shinn-Shyong Tsai1,4,*

1Department of Veterinary Medicine, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Pingtung 912, Taiwan
2Animal Health Inspection Department, Bureau of Animal and Plant Health Inspection and Quarantine, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, Taipei 100, Taiwan
3Animal Health Research Institute, Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, Taipei 251, Taiwan
4Southern Taiwan Aquatic Animal Disease Diagnostic Center, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Pingtung 912, Taiwan
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: An outbreak of mycobacteriosis was investigated in milkfish Chanos chanos, which had a cumulative mortality of up to 66.7% over the course of 1 yr. Gross reddish- or greyish-white nodules appeared on the peritoneal surface, spleen, kidney, liver and gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Epithelioid granulomas with the formation of Langhan’s type giant cells were the prominent histopathological changes. Despite large numbers of acid-fast bacilli in the granulomas, neither caseous necrosis nor dystrophic calcification were observed. Using degenerate primers that targeted the heat shock protein 65 kDa gene of Mycobacterium spp., a 441 bp product was amplified. When compared with published sequences, our products were identical to those of Mycobacterium abscessus Type II (GenBank accession number AY603554). This is the first report of M. abscessus infection in milkfish.

KEY WORDS: Mycobacteriosis · Mycobacterium abscessus · Visceral granuloma · PCR · Milkfish

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