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Erythromycin and florfenicol treatment of rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss (Walbaum) experimentally infected with Flavobacterium psychrophilum

Jarau, Maureen, MacInnes, Janet I., Lumsden, John S.
Journal of fish diseases 2019 v.42 no.3 pp. 325-334
Flavobacterium psychrophilum, Oncorhynchus mykiss, aquaculture, body weight, erythromycin, financial economics, fish, florfenicol, juveniles, minimum inhibitory concentration, mortality, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, signs and symptoms (animals and humans)
Flavobacterium psychrophilum is responsible for significant economic losses in rainbow trout aquaculture. Antimicrobial treatment remains the primary means of control; however, there are limited choices available for use. The objectives of the study were therefore to determine the minimum inhibitory concentrations for erythromycin and florfenicol in selected F. psychrophilum isolates and to evaluate their clinical treatment efficacy in experimentally infected rainbow trout. All isolates tested had moderate susceptibility to florfenicol and erythromycin except one isolate, which had low susceptibility to erythromycin. Two isolates (one with moderate and one with low susceptibility to erythromycin) were used in an experimental infection trial. Rainbow trout juveniles were injected intraperitoneally with 10⁸ cfu/fish and after mortality had begun, fish were given erythromycin‐ and florfenicol‐medicated feed at a rate of 75 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ and 10 mg kg⁻¹ day⁻¹ fish body weight, respectively, for 10 consecutive days. The splenic F. psychrophilum load was determined using an rpoC quantitative PCR throughout the 30‐day trial. Relative to antibiotic‐free controls, erythromycin treatment significantly (p < 0.05) reduced mortality of rainbow trout juveniles infected with FPG101, even when treatment was initiated after clinical signs developed.