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Gravelines, France

Rekecki A.,Ghent University | Gunasekara R.A.Y.S.A.,Ghent University | Dierckens K.,Ghent University | Laureau S.,Ecloserie Marine de Gravelines | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Fish Diseases | Year: 2012

The location and cell damage caused by Vibrio anguillarum, the causative agent of classical vibriosis, within the developing gut of the newly hatched sea bass, Dicentrarchus labrax (L.), is unknown. A gnotobiotic sea bass model was used to investigate the early interactions of V. anguillarum with sea bass larvae. In the present study, germ-free sea bass larvae were orally exposed to a V. anguillarum HI-610 pathogen labelled with the green fluorescent protein (GFP-HI-610) and sampled at regular intervals. Pathogenic colonization of gut enterocytes was observed 2h post-exposure (p.e.) and onwards, whereas bacteria within the swim bladder were visualized 48h p.e and onwards. Ultrastructural findings demonstrated direct bacterial contact with the host cell in the oesophageal mucosa and putative attachment to microvilli of mid- and hindgut enterocytes. The present findings form a starting point for studies assessing the impact of potential candidates (probiotics, prebiotics, antimicrobial peptides) to mitigate bacterial virulence. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Li X.,Ghent University | Defoirdt T.,Ghent University | Yang Q.,Ghent University | Laureau S.,Ecloserie Marine de Gravelines | And 2 more authors.
Diseases of Aquatic Organisms | Year: 2014

Vibrio anguillarum is the major cause of haemorrhagic septicaemia, vibriosis, which is a severe disease affecting marine fish. In this work, it was found that the mortality of gnotobiotic sea bass larvae challenged with V. anguillarum was dependent on the number of dead fish in the vials at the moment of challenge. Based on this finding, the effect of dead hosts (homogenised sea bass larvae or brine shrimp) on the virulence of V. anguillarum towards sea bass larvae was further investigated. Addition of homogenised hosts led to significantly increased larval mortality of challenged larvae, and this was observed for 3 different V. anguillarum strains, i.e. 43, NB 10 and HI 610. In contrast, the addition of similar levels of tryptone had no effect on mortality. In line with this, the motility of all 3 V. anguillarum strains was significantly increased by the addition of homogenised hosts but not by tryptone. These results suggest that dead hosts increase infectivity of V. anguillarum, not merely by offering nutrients to the bacteria, but also by increasing virulence-associated activities such as motility. © Inter-Research 2014.

Schaeck M.,Ghent University | De Swaef E.,Ghent University | Van Den Broeck W.,Ghent University | Van Nevel S.,Ghent University | And 8 more authors.
Diseases of Aquatic Organisms | Year: 2016

A thorough understanding of host-microbe interactions is crucial for more efficient disease management in the marine larviculture industry. As demonstrated in terrestrial animal research, gnotobiotic systems (involving animals cultured in germ-free conditions or inoculated with known microorganisms) are excellent tools to extend our understanding of the mechanisms involved in host-microbe interactions and allow the evaluation of new treatments for diseases. In this study, we introduce a germ-free European sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax larval model, independent of the continuous addition of antimicrobial agents. This model has an experimental set-up that allows addition of live feed to the larvae without compromising the germ-free status. This model will facilitate and render aquaculture research more effective in terms of mitigation fish larval diseases. © 2016 Inter-Research.

Rekecki A.,Ghent University | Ringo E.,University of Tromso | Olsen R.,University of Tromso | Myklebust R.,University of Bergen | And 8 more authors.
Journal of Fish Diseases | Year: 2013

As adhesion and translocation through fish gut enterocytes of the pathogen Vibrio (Listonella) anguillarum are not well investigated, the effective cause of disease and mortality outbreaks in larval sea bass, Dicentrarchus labrax, suffering from vibriosis is unknown. We detected V. anguillarum within the gut of experimentally infected gnotobiotic sea bass larvae using transmission electron microscopy and immunogold labelling. Intact bacteria were observed in close contact with the apical brush border in the gut lumen. Enterocytes contained lysosomes positive for protein A-gold particles suggesting intracellular elimination of bacterial fragments. Shed intestinal cells were regularly visualized in the gut lumen in late stages of exposure. Some of the luminal cells showed invagination and putative engulfment of bacterial structures by pseudopod-like formations. The engulfed structures were positive for protein A-colloidal gold indicating that these structures were V. anguillarum. Immunogold positive thread-like structures secreted by V. anguillarum suggested the presence of outer membrane vesicles (MVs) hypothesizing that MVs are potent transporters of active virulence factors to sea bass gut cells suggestive for a substantial role in biofilm formation and pathogenesis. We put forward the hypothesis that MVs are important in the pathogenesis of V. anguillarum in sea bass larvae. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Debusschere E.,Belgium Institute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research | Debusschere E.,Ghent University | De Coensel B.,Ghent University | Bajek A.,Ecloserie Marine de Gravelines | And 8 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Impact assessments of offshore wind farm installations and operations on the marine fauna are performed in many countries. Yet, only limited quantitative data on the physiological impact of impulsive sounds on (juvenile) fishes during pile driving of offshore wind farm foundations are available. Our current knowledge on fish injury and mortality due to pile driving is mainly based on laboratory experiments, in which high-intensity pile driving sounds are generated inside acoustic chambers. To validate these lab results, an in situ field experiment was carried out on board of a pile driving vessel. Juvenile European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) of 68 and 115 days post hatching were exposed to pile-driving sounds as close as 45 m from the actual pile driving activity. Fish were exposed to strikes with a sound exposure level between 181 and 188 dB re 1 μPa2.s. The number of strikes ranged from 1739 to 3067, resulting in a cumulative sound exposure level between 215 and 222 dB re 1 μPa2.s. Control treatments consisted of fish not exposed to pile driving sounds. No differences in immediate mortality were found between exposed and control fish groups. Also no differences were noted in the delayed mortality up to 14 days after exposure between both groups. Our in situ experiments largely confirm the mortality results of the lab experiments found in other studies. © 2014 Debusschere et al.

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