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Thread: Inter-Species Transmission of KHV

  1. #1
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
    Orlando, Florida

    Inter-Species Transmission of KHV

    A thread on another forum asking whether the so-called Chinese Banded High-Fin Shark could carry KHV caused me to go back through some articles I had saved. There was one published in 2016 which I had meant to post about, but had not. The study found that rainbow trout could carry and transmit KHV to carp. The citation and abstract:

    Fisheries and Aquaculture Journal

    Is There Any Species Specificity in Infections with Aquatic Animal
    Herpesviruses?–The Koi Herpesvirus (KHV): An Alloherpesvirus Model
    Sven M Bergmann1*, Michael Cieslak1, Dieter Fichtner1, Juliane Dabels2, Sean J Monaghan3, Qing Wang4, Weiwei Zeng4 and Jolanta
    1FLI Insel Riems, Südufer 10, 17493 Greifswald-Insel Riems, Germany
    2University of Rostock, Aquaculture and Sea Ranching, Justus-von-Liebig-Weg 6, Rostock 18059, Germany
    3Aquatic Vaccine Unit, Institute of Aquaculture, School of Natural Sciences, University of Stirling, Stirling, FK9 4LA, UK
    4Pearl-River Fisheries Research Institute, Xo. 1 Xingyu Reoad, Liwan District, Guangzhou 510380, P. R. of China
    5West Pomeranian Technical University, Aquaculture, K. Królewicza 4, 71-550, Szczecin, Poland

    Most diseases induced by herpesviruses are host-specific; however, exceptions exist within the family
    Alloherpesviridae. Most members of the Alloherpesviridae are detected in at least two different species, with and
    without clinical signs of a disease. In the current study the Koi herpesvirus (KHV) was used as a model member
    of the Alloherpesviridae and rainbow trout as a model salmonid host, which were infected with KHV by immersion.
    KHV was detected using direct methods (qPCR and semi-nested PCR) and indirect (enzyme-linked immunosorbant
    assay; ELISA, serum neutralization test; SNT). The non-koi herpesvirus disease (KHVD)-susceptible salmonid fish
    were demonstrated to transfer KHV to naïve carp at two different temperatures including a temperature most suitable
    for the salmonid (15°C) and cyprinid (20°C). At 20°C KHVD was induced in carp cohabitated with infected trout. KHV
    was also detected virologically and serologically at the end of the experiment in both rainbow trout and carp.
    Last edited by MikeM; 09-28-2017 at 10:28 AM.
    ricshaw likes this.

  2. #2
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Orlando, Florida
    There have been several studies showing that non-carp species can be infected, but asymptomatic. These have mostly been species fairly closely related to carp, and it has not always been established that the non-carp species could be a vector for transmission to koi. Goldfish have been suspected as transmission vectors, but most published studies have not gone so far as to conclude that they definitely are. The economic consequences to ornamental fisheries could be so severe there is great reluctance to publish a conclusion without a level of absolute certainty rarely found in any scientific inquiry. The fact that most scientists studying fish diseases are connected to aquaculture in some fashion, and have a goal of their learning benefitting the economic production of aquaculture in general, undoubtedly influences this conservatism. ...I do not criticize for this, as it is a good thing for scientists to be very careful about the conclusions they publish. But, it is a factor that should be recognized when putting things into perspective.

    The conclusion that rainbow trout can be vectors of transmission of KHV to carp is a powerful one. Rainbow trout are in the family Salmonidae, quite removed from carp. If the conclusion holds in further studies, it raises the spectre of a very wide range of fish species being vectors for KHV. Indeed, for koikeepers the assumption should become that any fish species can be a vector for transmission until proven otherwise... and proving that negative to a level of confidence acceptable to koi hobbyists may be a very difficult thing to do.

    As a consequence, koi sold in the mass market of pet shops and garden shops where the largest volume of koi are sold in the U.S. and many other countries become even more questionable since such outlets regularly mix fish species and fish from different sources, use shared filtration systems and are otherwise anything but bio-secure. We know that KHV outbreaks continue, although generally not in the ponds of the more serious koikeepers who patronize name breeders and dealers. Their maintenance of bio-secure operations has protected the hobby. The KHV outbreaks we continue to hear about involve backyard garden ponds where a mix of inexpensive koi have been kept and the ponds of folks who have 'rescued' such koi. It has generally been thought that the source has been some cheap koi produced in mass by some non-secure breeder, whether domestic or foreign. Reports of high risk for KHV among koi mass produced in Indonesia and southeast Asia have fed that thinking. Such koi are typically found at pet shops and garden shops. The possibility has to be considered that in some instances the source of transmission may not have been the hypothetical, anonymous non-secure breeder, but the shop itself. ....Since I keep tropical fish in aquaria that is a bothersome possibility. The equipment used with the aquaria does not get used with the pond, but I have never made it a conscious point to be bio-secure about it. Perhaps I should???? ....The risk seems likely to be infinitesimally small, but maybe not as small as one would guess???
    Brian and diamond*girl like this.

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