Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

First report of the intracellular fish parasite Sphaerothecum destruens associated with the invasive topmouth gudgeon (Pseudorasbora parva) in France.

Abstract

Sphaerothecum destruens has emerged as a serious parasite of fish. Its life cycle, as well as its association with Asian cyprinids, allows it to infect a wide range of hosts. The topmouth gudgeon (Pseudorasbora parva), an invasive species that has rapidly colonized Europe, has been shown to be a healthy carrier of the parasite. However, in France, the presence of S. destruens and its possible association with P. parva have not yet been demonstrated. Here, we screened topmouth gudgeon DNA for S. destruens using PCR amplification of an 18S rRNA gene fragment of the parasite. Sequencing and phylogenetic analysis confirmed the presence of S. destruens in the invasive fish species. Our results suggest that P. parva can be a potent vector of the parasite, and has the potential to become a major ecological and economic threat to the French fish population.