Hepatopancreatic microsporidiosis (HPM) caused by Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei (EHP) is a newly emerging disease of cultivated shrimp in Asia. Current evidence indicates that it can be associated with severe growth retardation that may not be clearly evident until the second month of culture and that it may even cause low continuous mortality in the case of very severe infections.
Here we present a new method for detecting Enterocytozoon hepatopenaei (EHP) that has superior specificity to the first generation SSU-PCR developed in 2009 when the genetic information of EHP was still limited. Due to the urgency in stemming losses to HPM, we have decided to release this method for free, non-commercial use to the global shrimp farming community.
The second generation EHP detection method presented here is based on a gene encoding a spore wall protein (SWP) of EHP (SWP-PCR). Results from our laboratory work revealed, in contrast to SSU-PCR, that the SWP-PCR method did not give cross reactions with DNA from crabs infected with H. eriocheir and E. canceri. From these results, we recommend that the new SWP-PCR method replace the first generation SSU-PCR method.
The sequences of the primers for the SWP-PCR method (nested PCR) are given below and can be used freely for non-commercial applications to detecting EHP. Please contact Centex Shrimp (ornchuma.its 'at' mahidol.ac.th) to obtain a free positive control plasmid (pGEM-EHPSWP).
The objective of this project was to develop an agreed code of practice for the transboundary movement of aquatic organisms that feeds into the fisheries management strategy for the lower Mekong basin. The risks of unregulated movements include the introduction of disease agents, unwanted or invasive species and of compromising the genetic integrity of local populations. The code of practice provides guidance on risk management and mitigation measures be taken into account for live aquatic animal imports or other transfers that are part of the established commercial practice, or those related to scientific study at research facilities. The code addresses impacts relating to the movement of both exotic and indigenous species.
The code was developed in consultation with the fisheries line agencies of MRC member countries and through a regional consultation workshop that was held from 3-4 November 2014. Development of the code was funded by the Mekong River Commission.
The Aquatic Animal Health Programme assists members to reduce the risks of aquatic animal disease impacting the livelihoods of farmers, national economies, trade, environment and human health by: