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Cause of EMS Shrimp Disease Identified

January 14, 2014

The farmed whiteleg shrimp price has been skyrocketing on account of their massive deaths triggered by an infectious disease. A joint team of researchers from Tokyo Univ. of Marine Science and Technology and Thailand successfully identified the DNA of the pathogen. The international price of the shrimp as of late 2013 became twice as high as that of 2012. This relentlessly high price has been impacting one of the recipients Japan, as well. Eradicating the pathogen will provide a solution to the high price.

Whiteleg shrimp have been farmed mainly in Southeast Asia and in recent years there has been a widespread disease called Early Mortality Syndrome (EMS), which destroys shrimp pancreas and leads whiteleg shrimp to death. The research team collected from infected shrimp vibrio parahaemolyticus, believed to be the underlying cause of the disease. Its DNA was then examined contrasted with a type of vibrio parahaemolyticus that does not give rise to any diseases. It was discovered that infectious vibrio parahaemolyticus contained a distinctive cluster of genes.

The team is currently focusing on engendering a system that will instantly detect infected shrimp. Establishing technology to repress the further development of damage with early detection and remove the pathogen from pens is drawing attention.

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