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PLoS One. 2009;4(2):e4511. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0004511. Epub 2009 Feb 19.

Vibrio zinc-metalloprotease causes photoinactivation of coral endosymbionts and coral tissue lesions.

Author information

1
ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, and School of Marine and Tropical Biology, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia. dsmb007@jcu.edu.au

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Coral diseases are emerging as a serious threat to coral reefs worldwide. Of nine coral infectious diseases, whose pathogens have been characterized, six are caused by agents from the family Vibrionacae, raising questions as to their origin and role in coral disease aetiology.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

Here we report on a Vibrio zinc-metalloprotease causing rapid photoinactivation of susceptible Symbiodinium endosymbionts followed by lesions in coral tissue. Symbiodinium photosystem II inactivation was diagnosed by an imaging pulse amplitude modulation fluorometer in two bioassays, performed by exposing Symbiodinium cells and coral juveniles to non-inhibited and EDTA-inhibited supernatants derived from coral white syndrome pathogens.

CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE:

These findings demonstrate a common virulence factor from four phylogenetically related coral pathogens, suggesting that zinc-metalloproteases may play an important role in Vibrio pathogenicity in scleractinian corals.

PMID:
19225559
PMCID:
PMC2637982
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0004511
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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