TitleSensitivity and specificity of histology for diagnoses of four common pathogens and detection of nontarget pathogens in adult Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in fresh water.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsKent, ML, Benda, S, St-Hilaire, S, Schreck, CB
JournalJ Vet Diagn Invest
Date Published2013 May
KeywordsAnimals, Fish Diseases, Fresh Water, Gram-Negative Bacterial Infections, Gram-Positive Bacterial Infections, Micrococcaceae, Myxozoa, Nematode Infections, Parasitic Diseases, Animal, Salmon, Sensitivity and Specificity

Histology is often underutilized in aquatic animal disease screening and diagnostics. The agreement between histological classifications of infection and results using diagnostic testing from the American Fisheries Society's Blue Book was conducted with 4 common salmon pathogens: Aeromonas salmonicida, Renibacterium salmoninarum, Ceratomyxa shasta, and Nanophyetus salmincola. Adult Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) in Oregon were evaluated, and agreement between tests was calculated. Live and dead (both pre- and postspawning) salmon were collected from the Willamette River, Oregon, its tributaries, the Willamette Hatchery, and after holding in cool, pathogen-free water during maturation at Oregon State University. Sensitivity and specificity of histology compared to Blue Book methods for all fish, live fish only, and dead (pre- and postspawned combined) fish only were, respectively, as follows: A. salmonicida (n = 105): specificity 87.5%, 87.5%, 87.5% and sensitivity 38.6%, 14.8%, 60.0%; R. salmoninarum (n = 111): specificity 91.9%, 85.7%, 97.7% and sensitivity 16.0%, 7.1%, 27.2%; C. shasta (n = 136): specificity 56.0%, 63.3%, 28.6% and sensitivity 83.3%, 86.2%, 71.4%; N. salmincola (n = 228): specificity 68.2%, 66.7%, not possible to calculate for dead fish and sensitivity 83.5%, 80.5%, 87.3%. The specificity was good for bacterial pathogens. This was not the case for C. shasta, likely due to detection of presporogenic forms only by histology. Sensitivity of histology for bacterial pathogens was low with the exception of dead fish with A. salmonicida. Kappa analysis for agreement between Blue Book and histology methods was poor to moderate. However, histological observations revealed the presence of other pathogens that would not be detected by other methods.

Alternate JournalJ Vet Diagn Invest
PubMed ID23536613