on the Blue Crab Population of Coastal Georgia of a Disease Associated with
Parasitic Dinoflagellate, Hematodinium sp.
Survey of Infection Intensity and Prevalence of Parasitic Dinoflagellate in
Blue Crabs from Waters Near Brunswick, Georgia
Richard Lee (Skidaway
Institute of Oceanography, Savannah, Georgia, USA)
Georgia Sea Grant College Program (project number R/FS-4-PD)
8/1/99 - 12/31/99 and 3/1/00 - 2/28/02 (complete)
To use a molecular probe to determine the intensity and prevalence of the parasitic
dinoflagellate Hematodinium sp. in blue crabs in salt marsh estuaries
of coastal Georgia.
- A primer PCR
assay was developed to assay for Hematodinium in tissues and hemolymph
of blue crabs.
- Seasonal changes
in Hematodinium infection in several salt marsh estuaries of coastal
Georgia were determined.
- During the
winter and early spring, Hematodinium sp. were not detected in
crabs, followed by a peak of infection in the late spring, absence of
crabs in the summer, and a second peak of infection in the fall.
- The absence
of crabs in the summer appears to be due to the heavy mortality of crabs
in the late spring as a result of Hematodinium disease.
Gruebl T, Frischer ME, Sheppard M, Neumann M, Maurer AN, Lee RF, 2002.
Development of a 18S rRNA gene targeted PCR based diagnostic for the blue crab
parasite, Hematodinium sp. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms. D922.