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Turkish Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 2014, Vol 14, Num, 4     (Pages: 893-896)

Four-Year Surveillance of Marteilia refringens in Shellfish Farms in the Gulf of La Spezia (Liguria, Italy)

L. Serracca 1 ,M. Prearo 2 ,I. Rossini 1 ,R. Battistini 1 ,M. Corsi 1 ,C. Ercolini 1

1 Piedmont Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute, Marine Microbiology Laboratory, Liguria and Valle d’Aosta, Via degli Stagnoni, 96-19136 La Spezia, Italy
2 Piedmont Experimental Zooprophylactic Institute, Fish Disease Laboratory, Liguria and Valle d’Aosta, Turin, Italy
DOI : 10.4194/1303-2712-v14_4_07 Viewed : 4862 - Downloaded : 3527 The paramyxean protistan parasites Marteilia refringens and M. maurini, two Marteilia species detected in Europe, infect several bivalve mollusc species of economic interest. Marteiliosis, caused by infection with M. refringens, is included in the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) list of diseases (OIE Aquatic Animal Health Code 2014) and is listed as a nonexotic pathogen under European Union legislation (2006/88/EC). As mandated by Italian Legislative Decree 148/2008, an annual sampling program is in place to monitor the health status of the Mediterranean mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis farmed in the Gulf of La Spezia (northwest Italy), test for the presence of the parasite in mussels, and evaluate abnormal mortality as an indicator of disease presence. During the four-year period 2010-2013, 4460 samples of M. galloprovincialis were collected from six farming areas and analyzed by cytological methods for the detection of M. refringens. Suspected positive diagnosis was confirmed by PCR assay performed according to the Manual of Diagnostic Tests for Aquatic Animals (OIE, 2012). Although infection rates generally decreased between 2010 and 2013, samples from all six areas tested positive for M. refringens, with an overall positivity rate of 4.05%. Keywords : Tissue imprint, cytology, PCR, Mytilus galloprovincialis, Marteilia spp