Research – Bacteriophage cocktail shows promise against Vibrio outbreaks in shrimp farms

The Fish Site

Food Illness

Researchers from the Biological Research Center of the Northwest, the Autonomous University of Nuevo León, the Food and Development Research Center AC and the University of Girona evaluated the protective effects of a cocktail of bacteriophages in L. vannamei post larvae against Vibrio bacteria. The scientists found that treating the PLs with bacteriophages kept Vibrio infections at bay and reduced their concentrations in culture water – without harming the surrounding bacterial communities.

Vibrio populations and bacteriophages

Vibrio bacteria are widely disseminated in ocean environments and several Vibrio species are responsible for disease outbreaks in marine animals – especially penaeid shrimp, different fish species and molluscs. Some strains of V. harveyi and V. campbellii have been implicated in disease outbreaks in shrimp hatcheries and grow-out facilities around the world. They’ve also been associated with coral infections.

“We used culture-dependent and culture-independent approaches to explore their effects on bacterial communities associated with shrimp post larvae,” the researchers said. According to the results of the study, administering the phage cocktail drastically reduced Vibrio counts in both in vitro and in vivo environments.

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