Characterization of a Novel Virus

Characterization of a Novel Virus Causing a Lethal Disease in Carp and Koi

Maya Ilouze,Arnon Dishon,and Moshe Kotler*

Department of Pathology, The Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem 91120, Israel

Since 1998 a lethal disease of carp and ornamental koi (Cyprinus carpio) has afflicted fisheries in North America, Europe, and Asia, causing severe economic losses to the fish farming industry. This review summarizes the isolation and identification of the disease-causing agent and describes the currently known molecular characteristics of this newly isolated virus, distinguishing it from other known large DNA viruses. In addition, we summarize the clinical and histopathological manifestations of the disease. Providing information on the immune response to this virus and evaluating the available means of diagnosis and protection should help to reduce the damage induced by this disease. This review does not discuss the economic aspects of the disease or the debate on whether the disease should be registered; both of these issues were recently reviewed in detail (O. L. M. Haenen, K. Way, S. M. Bergmann, and E. Ariel, Bull. Eur. Assoc. Fish Pathol. 24:293-307, 2004; D. Pokorova, T. Vesely, V. Piackova, S. Reschova, and J. Hulova, Vet. Med. Czech. 50:139-147, 2005).

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