1Quarantine and Inspection Division, National Fishery Products Quality Management Service, Yeongdo-gu, Busan, Republic of Korea
2MSc, Department of Aquatic Life Medicine, Kunsan National University, Gunsan-si, Jeollabuk-do, Republic of Korea
3Department of Aquatic Life Medicine, Kunsan National University, Gunsan-si, Jeollabuk-do, Republic of Korea
4Dong Gyeong Microorganism, Iksan-si, Jeollabuk-do, Republic of Korea
A disease outbreak occurred in June 2012 among mud loach cultured on pond farms in Jangseong-gun, Jeollanam-do, Korea. Mortality rates reached up to 1.2% in the farm per day. Typical clinical signs were bleeding ulcer at the middle portion of head and haemorrhagic erosion of the operculum. Based on biochemical characteristics, the causative bacterium isolated from diseased fish was identified as Aeromonas sobria. The isolate expressed two haemolytic genes, aerolysin (sob) and haemolysin (asa1) genes. Histopathologically, liver showed hepatocellular vacuolar degeneration and congestion in sinusoids. The spleen exhibited necrotized splenocytes and haemorrhagic pulps. In the kidney, glomerular destruction, renal tubular necrosis and haemorrhage were observed. Experimental infection (infectious dose of 106, 107, and 108 cfu fish-1) of healthy mud loach with the isolate resulted in the development of clinical signs similar to those seen in the farm. By injection with an infectious dose of 106 cfu fish-1, the mortality rate was 10.3% within 7 days post infection. A mortality rate of 60.9% was reached within 2 days when an infectious dose of 107 cfu fish-1 was used. Otherwise, all fish died within 1 day when injected with 108 cfu fish-1. The results demonstrated that A. sobria is involved in the morbidity and mortality of the farmed mud loach.