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Myxosporean Infection in Frozen Blocks of Patagonian Hakes

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Numerous pseudocysts of the myxosporean genus Kudoa were found infecting the body musculature of commercial frozen blocks of Patagonian hakes of the species Macruronus magellanicus, Merluccius australis, and Merluccius hubbsi. Pseudocysts consisted of numerous diminutive quadrate spores with four polar capsules. The small subunit ribosomal DNA was amplified, cloned, and sequenced for phylogenetic study. Minimum evolution and maximum parsimony analyses placed the resulting sequences in a clade with Kudoa species of Patagonian hakes, K. rosenbuschi and K. alliaria, with bootstrap values of 99%. Molecular and morphological results indicated that the above species were the same, with some differences based on host-related factors. Minor muscular damage appeared as a focal distortion of host fiber architecture to accommodate the parasite. The mild host response consisted of different stages of encapsulation. In cases of concurrent heavy infections, these fish are unappealing as food, due to the parasite's potential effect on the market's perception of macroscopic, unsightly cysts in fish musculature.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas (CSIC), ECOBIOMAR, Eduardo Cabello 6, 36208, Vigo, Spain 2: Centro de Investigacións Marinas (CIMA), Pedras de Corón s/n, 36620 Vilanova de Arousa, Pontevedra, Spain

Publication date: November 1, 2008

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