Viral Pathogens of Economically Important Penaeid Shrimp

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. Marine Biology

First Advisor

Andrew Rogerson

Second Advisor

Donald McCorquodale


Shrimp mariculture is the production of saltwater species in confinements or ponds. This industry was developed centuries ago in Southeast Asia, where shrimp were being accidentally reared in tidal fish ponds. Now shrimp are considered one of the most important and largest mariculture (also called aquaculture) industries in the world with participation from more than fifty countries. From 1975 to 1985, shrimp culture has considerably risen 300 percent and between 1985 and 1995 the industry increased another 250 percent (Whetstone et al. 2002). The development of shrimp aquaculture has been accompanied by the occurrence of infectious and non-infectious diseases. In the 1980s, diseases were mainly caused by bacteria, fungi, and ciliate parasites. Although, negative impacts were recognized, diseases were somewhat controlled. Devastating impacts that led to severe mortality in cultured shrimp did not occur until 1993, when outbreaks of epidemic diseases were being caused by viruses. But in recent years cultured shrimp production has increased due to new protocols for disease prevention and innovative water recirculation and reuse techniques (Whetstone et al. 2002).

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