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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Test for Detecting Major Catfish Disease
See also: US Patent Office Full Record

Southeast Area
  Stoneville, Mississippi

Patent Number: 6951726
Docket Number: 5402
Serial Number: 10252357
Date Patented: 10/04/2005

Technology Description:

Enteric septicemia (ESC) is a bacterial disease of channel catfish caused by the bacterium Edwardsiella ictaluri (E. ictaluri). It is one of the most prevalent diseases in catfish, costing catfish farmers substantial financial losses. ARS and Mississippi State scientists have developed a set of DNA primers and a DNA probe that are specific for E. ictaluri, which can be used to detect the disease in live fish. This real time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test is very specific, accurate, and highly sensitive. The test can be used to identify fish with active ESC infections and surviving fish that may harbor bacteria, providing significant benefits to selective breeding and disease management programs. RT-PCR can be used to identify specific families of catfish that demonstrate innate resistance to E. ictaluri infection. Early diagnosis of ESC is extremely important for successful treatment because disease progression can be rapid.

Currently, there are no ESC diagnostic tests using RT-PCR for detecting the disease early. This test could be used for selective breeding and potential disease monitoring programs in the catfish industry.

Biotechnology companies, or companies that manufacture analytical tools could use this invention to develop a diagnostic test kit to detect this disease in catfish.


Please refer to USPN 6,951,726 (Docket #0054.02), "A Real-Time PCR Assay of the Bacterium Edwardsiella ictaluri in Channel Catfish," which issued on October 4, 2005.   Foreign patent rights are not available.


Geoffrey C. Waldbieser  
Catfish Genetics Research
Stoneville, MS 38776-0038
(662) 686-3591 / Fax: (662) 686-3567

William R. Wolters 
National Cold Water Marine Aquaculture Center
Orono, ME 04469
(207) 581-3370 / Fax: (207) 581-1479

Jeffery S. Terhune & David J. Wise 
Mississippi State University
Delta Research and Extension Center
Stoneville, MS 38776
(662) 686-5239 / Fax: (662) 686-3320



Last Modified: 10/1/2015
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