There have been recent efforts amongst immunologists to develop approaches for following individual fish during challenges with viral and bacterial pathogens. This study contributes to assessing the feasibility of using such approaches to study amoebic gill disease (AGD). Neoparamoeba perurans, agent of AGD, has been responsible for widespread economic and fish loss in salmonid aquaculture. With the emergence of AGD in Europe, research into infection dynamics and host response has increased. This study investigated the effect of repeat exposure to anaesthesia, a necessary requirement when following disease progression in individual fish, on N. perurans. In vitro cultures of N. perurans were exposed every 4 days over a 28-day period to AQUI-S® (isoeugenol), a popular anaesthetic choice for AGD challenges, at a concentration and duration required to sedate post-smolt salmonids. Population growth was measured by sequential counts of amoeba over the period, while viability of non-attached amoeba in the culture was assessed with a vital stain. AQUI-S® was found to be a suitable choice for in vivo ectoparasitic challenges with N. perurans during which repetitive anaesthesia is required for analysis of disease progression.
- amoebic gill disease
- Neoparamoeba perurans