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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 98:177-184 (2012)  -  DOI:

Environmental persistence of amphibian and reptilian ranaviruses

J. Nazir1,2, M. Spengler1, R. E. Marschang1,*

1Institut für Umwelt und Tierhygiene, University of Hohenheim, Garbenstrasse 30, Stuttgart 70599, Germany
2Present address: Department of Microbiology, University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore 54600, Pakistan

ABSTRACT: Ranaviruses infect fish, amphibians, and reptiles. The present study was conducted to compare the persistence of amphibian and reptilian ranaviruses in a pond habitat. The 4 viruses used in this study included 2 amphibian ranaviruses, Frog virus 3 (FV3, the type species of the genus Ranavirus) and an isolate from a frog, and 2 ranaviruses of reptilian origin (from a tortoise and from a gecko). A sandwich germ-carrier technique was used to study the persistence of these viruses in sterile and unsterile pond water (PW) and soil obtained from the bank of a pond. For each virus, virus-loaded carriers were placed in each of the 3 substrates, incubated at 4 and 20°C, and titrated at regular intervals. Serial data were analyzed using a linear regression model to calculate T-90 values (time required for 90% reduction in the virus titer). Resistance of the viruses to drying was also studied. All 4 viruses were resistant to drying. At 20°C, T-90 values of the viruses were 22 to 31 d in sterile PW and 22 to 34 d in unsterile PW. Inactivation of all 4 viruses in soil at this temperature appeared to be non-linear. T-90 values at 4°C were 102 to 182 d in sterile PW, 58 to 72 d in unsterile PW, and 30 to 48 d in soil. Viral persistence was highest in the sterile PW, followed by the unsterile PW, and was lowest in soil. There were no significant differences in the survival times between the amphibian and reptilian viruses. The results of the present study suggest that ranaviruses can survive for long periods of time in pond habitats at low temperatures.

KEY WORDS: Ranaviruses · Pond water · Persistence · Soil

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Cite this article as: Nazir J, Spengler M, Marschang RE (2012) Environmental persistence of amphibian and reptilian ranaviruses. Dis Aquat Org 98:177-184.

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