Lookup NU author(s): David Smith,
Professor John Bythell,
Dr Michael Sweet
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).
Prokaryotic and ciliate communities of healthy and aquarium White Syndrome (WS)-affected coral fragments were screened using denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE). A significant difference (R = 0.907, p < 0.001) in 16S rRNA prokaryotic diversity was found between healthy (H), sloughed tissue (ST), WS-affected (WSU) and antibiotic treated (WST) samples. Although 3Vibriospp were found in WS-affected samples, two of these species were eliminated following ampicillin treatment, yet lesions continued to advance, suggesting they play a minor or secondary role in the pathogenesis. The thirdVibriosp increased slightly in relative abundance in diseased samples and was abundant in non-diseased samples. Interestingly, aTenacibaculumsp showed the greatest increase in relative abundance between healthy and WS-affected samples, demonstrating consistently high abundance across all WS-affected and treated samples, suggesting Tenacibaculumsp could be a more likely candidate for pathogenesis in this instance. In contrast to previous studies bacterial abundance did not vary significantly (ANOVA, F2, 6 = 1.000, p = 0.422) between H, ST, WSU or WST. Antimicrobial activity (assessed onVibrio harveyicultures) was limited in both H and WSU samples (8.1% ±8.2 and 8.0% ±2.5, respectively) and did not differ significantly (Kruskal-Wallis, χ2 (2) = 3.842, p = 0.146). APhilastersp, aCohnilembussp and aPseudokeronopsissp. were present in all WS-affected samples, but not in healthy samples. The exact role of ciliates in WS is yet to be determined, but it is proposed that they are at least responsible for the neat lesion boundary observed in the disease.
Author(s): Smith D, Leary P, Craggs J, Bythell J, Sweet M
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: PLoS ONE
Online publication date: 20/03/2015
Acceptance date: 18/02/2015
ISSN (electronic): 1932-6203
Publisher: Public Library of Science
PubMed id: 25794037
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