Article

The Role of Activated Lignite Carbon in the Development of Head and Lateral Line Erosion in the Ocean Surgeon

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Abstract

Head and lateral line erosion (HLLE) is an acute or chronic, often progressive problem affecting captive fishes. Its etiology is enigmatic. This study examined the relationship between the use of activated carbon as a filtrant and the development of HLLE lesions in ocean surgeons Acanthurus bahianus. Three identical, 454-L marine aquarium systems were established. Thirty-five ocean surgeons were distributed among the three aquarium systems. Activated lignite carbon was added to one system, and pelleted carbon was added to the second system. The fish in the third system were not exposed to any carbon. All 12 fish that were exposed to lignite carbon developed severe HLLE within 3 months. The 12 fish that were exposed to pelleted carbon did not develop gross symptoms, but microscopic lesions were discovered upon histological examination. The 11 control fish did not develop any visible or microscopic lesions. Based on these results, the use of activated lignite carbon in marine aquariums that house HLLE-susceptible species is discouraged.Received February 4, 2011; accepted April 9, 2011

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... In a study 7 of sharpsnout sea bream, LLD attributed to poor water quality was exacerbated by the use of activated carbon, with an increase in the size of lesions on the head and flank as well as extensive erosion of the fins. Although multiple reports 7,8,17,a indicate that activated carbon use can cause LLD, the quality of the activated carbon used and filter flow rates are likely meaningful factors, because the proportions of affected fish and severity of signs vary among investigations. ...
Article
Objective: To qualitatively review reports on lateral line depigmentation (LLD) in marine and freshwater fish. Sample: English-language publications concerning LLD published before March 1, 2020. Procedures: Electronic searches of CAB abstracts, PubMed, and Web of Science databases and the proceedings of the International Association of Aquatic Animal Medicine were performed. Records were systematically screened and selected for inclusion in an integrative review. Bibliographies of records included in the review were examined to identify other records to be screened. Included records were qualitatively reviewed. Evidence level and quality were graded according to previously described criteria. Information pertinent to epidemiological factors, etiopathogenesis, clinical and histopathologic findings, treatment, and prevention of LLD was collected. Results: 401 records were screened, and 24 unique publications (16 peer-reviewed articles, 1 textbook, and 7 abstracts) were included in the study; 12 (50%), 1 (4%), 6 (25%), and 5 (21%) were classified as evidence level I (experimental), II (quasi-experimental), III (nonexperimental), and V (clinical reports or clinician experience), respectively. Seventeen (71%) and 7 (29%) reports were classified as high quality and good quality, respectively. Conclusions and clinical relevance: LLD should be considered a clinical observation indicative of a dermatologic response of fish to suboptimal conditions; LLD should continue to be adopted as the preferred term to describe the classic signs. Whereas gross findings are similar among species, histologic findings can vary. Evidence-based treatment of LLD for individual fish consists of source control (changing tanks or systems), topical treatment with 0.01% becaplermin gel, supportive care, and antimicrobial treatment when warranted. For schools of fish, treatment and prevention of LLD should be focused on improving suboptimal environmental and physiologic conditions.
... Protein skimmers are recommended as with most modern marine aquaria as they will help remove surfactants and DOC/POC ultimately keeping water quality more stable with fewer required water exchanges. Activated carbon may be employed if necessary to remove Gelbstoff (yellowing compounds) or medications, but should be rinsed thoroughly before use to prevent introduction of carbon dust to the system which has been implicated in irritation of the lateral lines of some fishes (Hemdal and Odum 2011). ...
... Protein skimmers are recommended as with most modern marine aquaria as they will help remove surfactants and DOC/POC ultimately keeping water quality more stable with fewer required water exchanges. Activated carbon may be employed if necessary to remove Gelbstoff (yellowing compounds) or medications, but should be rinsed thoroughly before use to prevent introduction of carbon dust to the system which has been implicated in irritation of the lateral lines of some fishes (Hemdal and Odum 2011). ...
Article
Lateral line depigmentation (LLD) is a common condition in managed tropical saltwater fish, and treatment is somewhat elusive. Naltrexone, an opioid receptor antagonist, enhances epithelial cell replication, cytokine production, and angiogenesis to stimulate wound healing in mice. A treatment trial with 11 palette surgeonfish with LLD was performed. Seven fish underwent a single topical treatment of a mixture of 4 mg naltrexone and 10 g iLEX petroleum paste applied topically to LLD lesions. Four additional fish served as controls: two received only topical iLEX and two received no treatment. Severity of disease was scored on a 0-3 scale. Inflammatory response was gauged on a separate 0-3 scale for 5 d after treatment based on severity of erythema, as seen in a clinical case performed prior to this study. After 11 days, four affected animals that lacked an inflammatory response after naltrexone topical treatment were administered a single dose of intralesional 0.04% naltrexone (4 mg diluted into 10 ml saline). Lesions on all fish were photographed and measured at day 33. Clinical improvements in lesion size and pigmentation were apparent following topical naltrexone therapy in fish with severe lesions. Although these cases are promising, more data are needed to further evaluate the effectiveness of naltrexone 0.04% in treating LLD lesions in palette surgeonfish.
Article
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Hole-in-the-head disease is common in marine and freshwater fish. The fish develop supra- and infraorbital lesions in the skin above the lateral line channels of the head and the body. Depending on the severity of the lesions, the fish can show apathy and refuse food. A secondary bacterial infection may lead to death. This review summarizes all the causes of the condition that have been mentioned in the literature. There is still no agreement on the aetiology of the disease. Possible causes include infection with pathogenic agents, activated carbon, water composition, malnutrition, lack of ultraviolet light, stray current, stress and the uptake of copper. The published options for treatment are discussed.
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The morphological and biophysical characteristics were determined for a previously unreported angelfish reovirus isolated from a moribund angelfish Pomacanthus semicirculatus exhibiting clinical signs associated with head and lateral line erosion syndrome. Viral particles were nonenveloped, possessed a segmented double-stranded RNA genome enclosed by a double nucleocapsid, and were resistant to inactivation by ether and low pH. Electrophoretic and serologic characteristics of this viral agent were compared with those of other aquatic reoviruses isolated from different fish hosts (chum salmon Oncorhynchus keta, golden shiner Notemigonus crysoleucas, and channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus). Based upon these findings, molecular weights were estimated for the 11 genomic segments (0.34–2.4 × 106) and some of the major structural viral polypeptides (34.4–137.0 × 103).
Article
Head and lateral line erosion (HLLE) is a chronic dermatopathy affecting a number of fish that presents as depigmented skin along the lateral line system of the trunk and head. We present microbiological, immunological and histopathological features of this lesion in channel catfish, Ictalurus punctatus (Rafinesque), that developed after exposure to a chronic nutritional stress. Depigmention was limited to skin that was adjacent to the lateral line. The epidermis of affected fish was thin and reduced to a one-cell-thick layer over the lateral line. Melanocytes were depleted at the dermo-epidermal junction and formed aggregates in the epidermis. Innate immunity was weaker in affected fish than that previously measured in well-fed channel catfish. Because the pathology and apparent aetiology of HLLE described in various fish species are highly variable, HLLE appears to be a clinical sign, rather than a disease or syndrome. Thus, we propose that this clinical sign be referred to as lateral line depigmentation (LLD), because this description more accurately encompasses all cases of this presentation reported in fish. As nutritional requirements of channel catfish and lateral line neuroanatomy are well-known, the ability to reproducibly induce LLD in this species could provide a useful model for understanding its pathogenesis.
Article
Chronic erosive dermatopathy (CED) is a disease of intensively farmed Murray cod in Australia that has been reported in association with the use of groundwater (mechanically extracted from shallow boreholes) supplies. CED results in focal ulceration of the skin overlying sensory canals of the head and flanks. Trials were conducted at an affected fish farm to study the development of the condition, both in Murray cod and in goldfish, and also to assess the reported recovery of lesions when affected fish were transferred to river water. Grossly, lesions began after 2-3 weeks with degeneration of tissue at the periphery of pores communicating with the sensory canals. Widening of these pores along the axis of the canals resulted from a loss of tissue covering the canal. Histopathologically, hyperplasia of the canal epithelial lining was seen after 3 weeks in borehole water and subsequent necrosis and sloughing of this tissue resulted in the loss of the canal roof. Canal regeneration occurred when fish were transferred from borehole water into river water. The lack of lesions in other organs and the pattern of lesion development support exposure to waterborne factors as the most likely aetiology.