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A Case of Mortality Caused by Aeromonas hydrophila in Wild-Caught Red-Eyed Crocodile Skinks (Tribolonotus gracilis)

Laboratory of Aquatic Biomedicine, College of Veterinary Medicine and Research Institute for Veterinary Science, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea
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Vet. Sci. 2020, 7(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/vetsci7010004
Received: 9 December 2019 / Revised: 18 December 2019 / Accepted: 28 December 2019 / Published: 29 December 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Anatomy, Histology and Pathology)
Aeromonas hydrophila, a Gram-negative bacterium commonly found in aquatic environments, is pathogenic to amphibians, reptiles, and mammals. In human medicine, the clinical symptoms of aeromonad infection include not only gastroenteritis but also extraintestinal infections, such as wounds, cellulitis, and septicemia, in immunocompromised and immunocompetent individuals. In this study, ten red-eyed crocodile skinks (Tribolonotus gracilis) that shared the same space were found dead 7 days after being shipped from Indonesia. The necropsy revealed A. hydrophila to be the causative agent, and the isolates were susceptible to most antibiotics, based on an antimicrobial susceptibility test. Seven virulence factors (act, ast, alt, aerA, fla, gcaT, and ahyB) considered to be associated with virulence were detected by PCR. Microscopic examination revealed several necrotic lesions and melano-macrophage centers in the tissue slides. Reptiles caught in the wild for trade experience captivity stress. Furthermore, in the winter, reptiles are easily exposed to the cold atmosphere. These stresses can negatively impact the immunity of these ectotherms, making them vulnerable to A. hydrophila infections. Therefore, to avoid such opportunistic infections and mortality following exposure to severe stress, medical care is recommended. The studies of alternatives, such as bacteriophage and bacteriocin, are needed for a preventive application. View Full-Text
Keywords: Aeromonas hydrophila; bacterial infection; ectotherm; reptile; virulence factor Aeromonas hydrophila; bacterial infection; ectotherm; reptile; virulence factor
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Kwon, J.; Kim, S.G.; Kim, S.W.; Yun, S.; Kim, H.J.; Giri, S.S.; Han, S.J.; Oh, W.T.; Park, S.C. A Case of Mortality Caused by Aeromonas hydrophila in Wild-Caught Red-Eyed Crocodile Skinks (Tribolonotus gracilis). Vet. Sci. 2020, 7, 4.

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