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Proc Biol Sci. 2004 Aug 22;271(1549):1729-36.

The phylogeography of salmonid proliferative kidney disease in Europe and North America.

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School of Animal and Microbial Sciences, University of Reading, Whiteknights, PO Box 228, Reading RG6 6AJ, UK.


Salmonid proliferative kidney disease (PKD) is caused by the myxozoan Tetracapsuloides bryosalmonae. Given the serious and apparently growing impact of PKD on farmed and wild salmonids, we undertook a phylogeographic study to gain insights into the history of genealogical lineages of T. bryosalmonae in Europe and North America, and to determine if the global expansion of rainbow trout farming has spread the disease. Phylogenetic analyses of internal transcribed spacer 1 sequences revealed a clade composed of all North American sequences plus a subset of Italian and French sequences. High genetic diversity in North America and the absence of genotypes diagnostic of the North American clade in the rest of Europe imply that southern Europe was colonized by immigration from North America; however, sequence divergence suggests that this colonization substantially pre-dated fisheries activities. Furthermore, the lack of southern European lineages in the rest of Europe, despite widespread rainbow trout farming, indicates that T. bryosalmonae is not transported through fisheries activities. This result strikingly contrasts with the commonness of fisheries-related introductions of other pathogens and parasites and indicates that fishes may be dead-end hosts. Our results also demonstrate that European strains of T. bryosalmonae infect and induce PKD in rainbow trout introduced to Europe.

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