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Research article2003Peer reviewed

Pathology and immunohistochemistry in three species of salmonids after experimental infection with Flavobacterium psychrophilum

Ekman E, Norrgren L


Rainbow trout, Oncorhynchus mykiss (Walbaum), sea trout, Salmo trutta L., and Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar L., were experimentally infected with Flavobacterium psychrophilum in order to evaluate any species differences in susceptibility to the bacterium. Furthermore, differences in pathological changes and distribution of the bacteria in internal organs were studied. The bacteria were injected intraperitoneally in two doses, high dose (Hd) 1 x 10(7) colony forming units (CFU) fish(-1) and low dose (Ld) 1 x 10(6) CFU fish(-1). The mortalities in the Ld groups varied between 0 and 7.5% and in the Hd groups between 55 - 70%. No significant differences in mortality between the species were recorded. Clinical signs and pathological findings were similar in the three species and in accordance with those of rainbow trout fry syndrome. Rainbow trout showed more pronounced lesions in the spleen compared with the other species. Necrosis of renal tubular epithelium and haematopoietic tissue was most prominent in rainbow trout and Atlantic salmon. Intracellular eosinophilic droplets in the kidney tubular epithelium were a prominent finding in rainbow trout and sea trout surviving the infection. The distribution of the bacteria in internal organs was similar in the three species, as studied with immunohistochemistry


Atlantic Salmon; Flavobacterium psychrophilum; immunohistochemistry; pathology; rainbow trout; sea trout; susceptibility

Published in

Journal of Fish Diseases
2003, Volume: 26, number: 9, pages: 529-538