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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture Research

Title: Production of transgenic rainbow trout resistant to infection by bacterial and viral pathogens

item Chen, Thomas
item Chiou, P
item Chen, M
item Lin, C

Submitted to: Aquaculture America Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/12/2012
Publication Date: 2/21/2013
Citation: Chen, T.T., Chiou, P.P., Chen, M.J., Lin, C.M. 2013. Production of transgenic rainbow trout resistant to infection by bacterial and viral pathogens. Aquaculture America Conference. 243.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Exploiting the natural microbe-defense (innate defense) mechanism, originally discovered in insects and subsequently found in many animal species, may lead to the development of a novel approach for protecting commercially important finfish and crustacean species from infection by microbial pathogens. To this end, we have been focusing our attention on assessing the potential of utilizing this genetic trait to protect commercially important finfish, e.g., rainbow trout, from infection by Aeromonas salmonicida and the infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV) by transgenesis. A gene construct containing pig cecropin P1 driven by a CMV promoter was introduced into rainbow trout (Oncorhyncus mykiss) via the sperm mediated gene transfer procedure. Successful gene transfer occurs in 5 - 40% of the fish that survived from the procedure. Expression of cecropin P1 transgene was observed in the liver, muscle, spleen and kidney tissues of F1, F2 and F3 transgneic animals. The body size distribution of the transgenic fish population was indistinguishable from the non-transgenic sibling, suggesting that the expression of pig cecropin P1 transgene transgenic individuals does not affect the growth performance of the fish. Challenge studies were conducted in several transgenic families of different generations with Aeromonas salmonicida and IHNV. A total of 9 pig cecropin P1 transgenic families that exhibited resistant characteristic to infection by A. salmonicida and IHNV were developed. These transgenic families have been bred to all male homozygous by androgenesis. The resistant characteristic was also observed in heterozygous progeny produced by crossing homozygous males with non-transgenic females. These results clearly demonstrate that manipulation of innate immunity genes may lead to development of disease resistant fish for commercial aquaculture. [This research was supported by a grant from U.S. Department of Agriculture (CONTR 58-1930-0-009) to T.T.C.]

Last Modified: 06/28/2017
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