Parasitic isopod Ceratothoa oestroides (Cymothoidea, Isopoda) is a common and generalist buccal cavity-dweller in marine fish, recognised for its detrimental effect in fingerling and juvenile farmed European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). Although distributed throughout the Mediterranean, the isopod provokes acute outbreaks mainly limited to particular endemic areas in Croatia (Adriatic Sea) and Greece (Aegean Sea). While numerous studies have previously evidenced its gross effect on farmed fish (i.e. decreased condition index, slower growth rate, lethargy and mortality), details on the host-parasite interaction are still lacking. Therefore, using a multimethodological approach, we closely examined the structure and appearance of isopod body parts acting in the attachment and feeding (stereomicroscopy, scanning and transmission electron microscopy), and the extent of host tissues damage (histology, immunohistochemistry, micro-computational tomography) induced by parasitation. Interestingly, while hematophagous nature of the parasite has been previously postulated we found no unambiguous data to support this; we observed host tissues fragmentation and extensive hyperplasia at the parasitation site, and no structures indicative of heme detoxifying mechanisms in the parasite gut, or other traces of a blood meal. The bacterial biofilm covering C. oestroides mouthparts and pereopods suggests that the isopod may play a role in conveying secondary pathogens to the infected host, or alternatively, it serves the parasite in normal interaction with its environment.

Host-Parasite Interaction between Parasitic Cymothoid Ceratothoa Oestroides and Its Host, Farmed European Sea Bass (Dicentrarchus labrax)

VOLPATTI D
Penultimo
Investigation
;
BERALDO P.
Ultimo
Investigation
2020-01-01

Abstract

Parasitic isopod Ceratothoa oestroides (Cymothoidea, Isopoda) is a common and generalist buccal cavity-dweller in marine fish, recognised for its detrimental effect in fingerling and juvenile farmed European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). Although distributed throughout the Mediterranean, the isopod provokes acute outbreaks mainly limited to particular endemic areas in Croatia (Adriatic Sea) and Greece (Aegean Sea). While numerous studies have previously evidenced its gross effect on farmed fish (i.e. decreased condition index, slower growth rate, lethargy and mortality), details on the host-parasite interaction are still lacking. Therefore, using a multimethodological approach, we closely examined the structure and appearance of isopod body parts acting in the attachment and feeding (stereomicroscopy, scanning and transmission electron microscopy), and the extent of host tissues damage (histology, immunohistochemistry, micro-computational tomography) induced by parasitation. Interestingly, while hematophagous nature of the parasite has been previously postulated we found no unambiguous data to support this; we observed host tissues fragmentation and extensive hyperplasia at the parasitation site, and no structures indicative of heme detoxifying mechanisms in the parasite gut, or other traces of a blood meal. The bacterial biofilm covering C. oestroides mouthparts and pereopods suggests that the isopod may play a role in conveying secondary pathogens to the infected host, or alternatively, it serves the parasite in normal interaction with its environment.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11390/1177664
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