Fecal samples as DNA source for the diagnosis of Necrotizing Hepatopancreatitis (NHP) in Penaeus vannamei broodstock.
Necrotizing Hepatopancreatitis (NHP) is a severe disease of cultivated penaeid shrimp caused by a pleomorphic, gram-negative, intracellular rickettsia-like bacterium. Current diagnostic methods for this disease are invasive, requiring dissection of the animal to perform histopathological analysis. In Colombia, NHP affects mainly broodstock, being a major cause of mortalities in maturation laboratories. In order to identify the presence of NHP without having to dissect the animal, we developed a PCR-based method using fecal samples as the DNA source. The DNA was extracted using a quick isolation protocol followed by amplification with primers specific for 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences. To verify the sensitivity and specificity we analyzed samples from the same animal by PCR and in situ hybridization, and found 100% agreement. In addition, we amplified DNA extracted form paraffin blocks to confirm NHP diagnosis. PCR amplification from fecal samples and paraffin blocks yielded the expected 440 bp fragment. We conclude that PCR amplification from fecal samples is a valuable tool for the diagnosis of NHP in broodstock organisms, and that paraffin-fixed tissues can be used as a source of DNA for PCR amplification of NHP. (+info
Electrogenic proton-regulated oxalate/chloride exchange by lobster hepatopancreatic brush-border membrane vesicles.
The transport of [14C]oxalate (Ox2-) by epithelial brush-border membrane vesicles (BBMV) of lobster (Homarus americanus) hepatopancreas, formed by a magnesium precipitation technique, was stimulated by an outward Cl- gradient (in > out). By contrast, Ox2- uptake was not enhanced by an inward Na+ or K+ transmembrane gradient. Generation of an inside-positive membrane potential by K+ in the presence of valinomycin stimulated Ox2-/Cl- exchange, while an inside-negative membrane potential generated by K+ efflux in the presence of valinomycin inhibited this process. Neither Ox2-/Ox2- nor Ox2-/SO4(2-) transport exchange were affected by alterations of transmembrane potential. An inwardly directed proton gradient, or the presence of low bilateral pH, enhanced Ox2-/Cl- exchange, yet the H+ gradient alone could not stimulate Ox2) uptake in Cl(-)-equilibrated BBMV or in vesicles lacking internal Cl-. The stilbenes 4-acetamido-4'-isothiocyanotostilbene-2,2'-disulfonic acid (SITS) and 4,4'-diisothiocyano-2,2'-disulfonic stilbene (DIDS) strongly inhibited Ox2-/Cl- exchange. Oxalate influx occurred by a combination of carrier-mediated transfer, exhibiting Michaelis-Menten kinetics, and nonsaturable 'apparent diffusion'. Apparent kinetic constants for Ox2-/Cl- exchange were Kt = 0.20 mmol l(-1) and Jmax = 1.03 nmol l(-1) mg(-1) protein 7 s(-1). 36Cl- influx into oxalate-loaded BBMV was stimulated by an inside-negative transmembrane potential compared with short-circuited vesicles. These results suggest that Ox2-/Cl- exchange in crustacean hepatopancreatic BBMV occurred by an electrogenic carrier mechanism exhibiting a 1:1 flux ratio that was modulated by an external proton-sensitive regulatory site. (+info
Occurrence, histopathology and experimental transmission of hepatopancreatic parvovirus infection in Penaeus monodon postlarvae.
Hepatopancreatic parvovirus (HPV) was detected in samples of Penaeus monodon post-larvae (PL-13, PL-18, PL-19, PL-26) from 2 hatcheries in 2 provinces (Samar and Iloilo) in the Philippines. The percentage of infection was 20 to 100% in postlarvae obtained from the hatchery in Samar in August 2001. Postlarvae from the hatchery in Iloilo, sampled in October and November 2001, had 70 to 99% HPV infection. Wet mounts of squashed hepatopancreatic tissue stained with malachite green (wet-mount technique) and histopathology revealed the presence of large, usually single, basophilic intranuclear inclusion bodies in the distal tubules, which led to displacement of the nucleoli. Light microscopy showed ovoid to spherical inclusion bodies, 5 to 11 mmicrom in diameter. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that the inclusion bodies were composed of electron-dense granular material and virions. The virions appeared roughly spherical and averaged 18 to 22 nm in diameter. An experiment was undertaken to induce HPV infection by feeding P. monodon postlarvae with virus-infected postlarvae. P. monodon postlarvae (PL-16), initially determined as free from HPV, were found HPV-positive 24 h after being fed with infected material. The percentage of infection ranged from 30% at Day 1 post-infection (p.i.) to 100% at Day 7 p.i. determined by the wet-mount technique and by histopathology. This is the first report of a successful horizontal transmission of HPV in P. monodon postlarvae. (+info
Detection by PCR of hepatopancreatic parvovirus (HPV) and other viruses in hatchery-reared Penaeus monodon postlarvae.
The prevalence of hepatopancreatic parvovirus (HPV), monodon baculovirus (MBV) and white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) in samples of Penaeus monodon postlarvae (PL10 to PL20, 10 to 20 d old postlarvae) in India was studied by PCR. Samples collected from different hatcheries, and also samples submitted by farmers from different coastal states, were analyzed. HPV was detected in 34%) of the hatchery samples and 31% of the samples submitted by farmers, using a primer set designed for detection of HPV from P. monodon in Thailand. However, none of these samples were positive using primers designed for detection of HPV from P. chinensis in Korea. This indicated that HPV from India was more closely related to HPV from P. monodon in Thailand. MBV was detected in 64% of the samples submitted by the farmers and 71% of the hatchery samples. A total of 84 % of the samples submitted by farmers, and 91% of the hatchery samples, were found positive for WSSV. Prevalence of concurrent infections by HPV, MBV and WSSV was 27% in hatchery samples and 29%, in samples submitted by farmers. Only 8% of the hatchery samples and 16% of the samples submitted by farmers were negative for all 3 viruses. This is the first report on the prevalence of HPV in P. monodon postlarvae from India. (+info
Common carp metallothionein-1 gene: cDNA cloning, gene structure and expression studies.
Metallothionein-1 (MT-1) cDNA clones were isolated from a common carp (Cyprinus carpio) uninduced hepatopancreas cDNA library. Northern blot assay using the common carp (cc) MT-1 cDNA as a probe showed high fold induction of ccMT mRNA levels in the intestine and kidney following exposure to Cd2+ and Zn2+. Using polymerase chain reaction (PCR), primers designed from the cDNA sequences allowed the isolation of ccMT-1 gene fragments including the 5'-flanking region. The 600 bp 5'-flanking region of ccMT-1 gene carries four putative metal regulatory regions, one AP1, two SP1, one c-Jun site, and a TATA box. The 5'-flanking region of the ccMT-1 gene obtained was a functional promoter responding to the administration of various metal ions as well as hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and lipopolysaccharide (LPS). When tested in primary cultures of cc hepatocytes, Zn2+ had the highest fold (20 times) induction of the 600 bp cloned ccMT-1 gene promoter, followed by Cu2+, Hg2+, Ni2+ and Pb2+ (4-5-fold inductions); H2O2 and LPS had a 6-7-fold induction. In conclusion, the ccMT-1 is a constitutively expressed MT and its gene promoter is inducible by various metal ions and chemical agents. (+info
Identification of juvenile hormone-active alkylphenols in the lobster Homarus americanus and in marine sediments.
We have identified, by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry, four alkylphenols that are present in the hemolymph and tissues of the American lobster Homarus americanus and in marine sediments. These alkylphenols are used industrially in antioxidant formulations for plastic and rubber polymer manufacturing, and are similar in structure to a known endocrine disruptor, bisphenol A. The compound 2-t-butyl-4-(dimethylbenzyl)phenol was present at concentrations of 0.02 to 1.15 microg/ml in hemolymph and 8.95 to 21.58 microg/g in sediments. A second compound, 2,4-bis-(dimethylbenzyl)phenol, was present at concentrations between 0.07 and 19.78 microg/ml in hemolymph and 138.94 to 224.89 microg/g in sediment, while a third compound, 2,6-bis-(t-butyl)-4-(dimethylbenzyl)phenol, was found at concentrations between 0.01 and 13.00 microg/ml in hemolymph, 2.55 and 6.11 microg/g in hepatopancreas, and 47.85 and 74.66 microg/g in sediment. A fourth compound, 2,4-bis-(dimethylbenzyl)-6-t-butylphenol, was found at concentrations of 0.20 to 70.71 microg/ml in hemolymph, 23.56 to 26.89 microg/g in hepatopancreas, and 90.68 to 125.58 microg/g in sediment. These compounds, along with bisphenol A, 4-dimethylbenzylphenol, and nonylphenol, display high juvenile hormone activity in bioassays. Alkylphenols at high concentrations are toxic to crustaceans and may contribute significantly to lobster mortality; at lower concentrations, they are likely to have endocrine-disrupting effects. (+info
Accumulation and translation of ferritin heavy chain transcripts following anoxia exposure in a marine invertebrate.
Differential screening of a Littorina littorea (the common periwinkle) cDNA library identified ferritin heavy chain as an anoxia-induced gene in hepatopancreas. Northern blots showed that ferritin heavy chain transcript levels were elevated twofold during anoxia exposure, although nuclear run-off assays demonstrated that ferritin heavy chain mRNAs were not transcriptionally upregulated during anoxia. Polysome analysis indicated that existing ferritin transcripts were actively translated during the anoxic period. This result was confirmed via western blotting, which demonstrated a twofold increase in ferritin heavy chain protein levels during anoxia, with a subsequent decrease to control levels during normoxic recovery. Organ culture experiments using hepatopancreas slices demonstrated a >50% increase in ferritin heavy chain transcript levels in vitro under conditions of anoxia and freezing, as well as after incubation with the second messenger cGMP. Taken together, these results suggest that ferritin heavy chain is actively regulated during anoxia exposure in the marine snail, L. littorea. (+info
'Candidatus Rhabdochlamydia porcellionis', an intracellular bacterium from the hepatopancreas of the terrestrial isopod Porcellio scaber (Crustacea: Isopoda).
Intracellular bacteria were observed in the hepatopancreas of the terrestrial isopod Porcellio scaber. Comparative 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis and electron microscopic observations were used to determine the taxonomic position of these intracellular bacteria. Phylogenetic analysis and a complex developmental cycle affiliate these bacteria to the order Chlamydiales, within which they form a distinctive lineage, close to the family Simkaniaceae. They share <92 % 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity with their closest relative and <88 % similarity with other members of the order Chlamydiales. A specific signature oligonucleotide sequence was identified and used as a probe, enabling the identification of intracellular bacteria in infected hepatopancreatic tissue. According to the distinctive morphology of their elementary bodies, which are rod-shaped rather than spherical and contain translucent oblong structures, their genomic properties and their crustacean host, the name 'Candidatus Rhabdochlamydia porcellionis' is proposed for intracellular bacteria in the hepatopancreas of P. scaber. (+info