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Fish Shellfish Immunol. 2008 Sep;25(3):239-49. doi: 10.1016/j.fsi.2008.05.002. Epub 2008 May 18.

Immune response of zebrafish (Danio rerio) against a newly isolated bacterial pathogen Aeromonas hydrophila.

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Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), Vigo, Spain.


A strain of Aeromonas hydrophila associated with unusual mortalities in zebrafish (Danio rerio) culture facilities was isolated, identified and characterized. In challenge experiments, adult zebrafish were susceptible to infection by intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection with viable bacteria and its extracellular products (ECPs) reaching very high mortalities in a few hours. The infection, by the viable bacteria or the ECPs, caused cell death in kidney, due to the cytotoxic and haemolytic activities of the bacterial ECPs. Moreover, the infection affected the release of oxygen (ROS) and nitrogen (NO) reactive free radicals. To determine if this A. hydrophila infection induces an inflammatory response, mRNA expression levels of tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha), interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta), interferon-gamma (IFNgamma) and inducible nitric oxide (iNOS) were assessed by real time PCR. The expression levels of TNFalpha, IL-1beta and IFNgamma were upregulated in the kidneys of infected zebrafish with viable bacteria, heat-killed bacteria and ECPs. Expression levels of iNOS were upregulated by ECPs. Mortality rate (LD(50)) and histopathology were also determined.

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