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Dis Aquat Organ. 2005 Apr 18;64(2):107-19.

Confirmation of Piscirickettsia salmonis as a pathogen in European sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax and phylogenetic comparison with salmonid strains.

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Institute of Aquaculture, University of Stirling, Stirling FK9 4LA, UK.


European sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax from the Mediterranean were diagnosed with a severe encephalitis. Rickettsia-like organisms (RLOs) were associated with brain lesions in routine paraffin sections. These were found to share common antigens with the Piscirickettsia salmonis type-strain, LF-89, by indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT) and by immunohistochemistry (IHC). In addition, we compared the DNA sequences of the 16S rDNA and 16S-23S internal transcribed spacer region (ITS) with those published for P. salmonis strains and found that the sea bass piscirickettsia-like organism (SBPLO) was another strain of P. salmonis, closely related to the salmonid pathogens. Furthermore, we showed that the SBPLO possessed at least 2 ITS regions, 1 of which contained tRNA genes.

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