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    • Article

      Mass mortalities associated with viral nervous necrosis in hatchery-reared sea bass Lates calcarifer in the Philippines 

      Y Maeno, LD de la Peña & ER Cruz-Lacierda - Japan Agricultural Research Quarterly, 2004 - Ministry of Tropical Agricultural Research Centre
      Viral nervous necrosis (VNN), also known as viral encephalopathy and retinopathy (VER), is an emerging disease affecting larvae and juveniles of many farmed marine fish species in Asia, Australia, Europe and North America. Mass mortality occurred in 14-day old larval sea bass Lates calcarifer at a hatchery in the Philippines associated with clinical signs such as abnormal swimming behavior and pale-gray discoloration of the body. Histological investigations in moribund fish revealed marked vacuolation in the retina and brain. Cytopathic effects (CPE) were observed in SSN-1 cells inoculated with the tissue filtrate of affected sea bass. A piscine nodavirus, the causative agent of VNN, was detected in the affected tissues and SSN-1 cells inoculated with the tissue filtrate of affected fish by RT-PCR. Electron microscopy revealed non-enveloped viral particles, 22-28 nm in diameter, in the cytoplasm of the brain and retina of affected fish and in the cytoplasm of VNN-infected SSN-1 cells after CPE appeared. These results indicate that mass mortality of sea bass larvae in the Philippines was caused by a piscine nodavirus.