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Data from: Identification of a bacterial pathogen associated with Porites white patch syndrome in the Western Indian Ocean

Citation

Séré, Mathieu G. et al. (2015), Data from: Identification of a bacterial pathogen associated with Porites white patch syndrome in the Western Indian Ocean, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.ms6b9

Abstract

Porites white patch syndrome (PWPS) is a coral disease recently described in the western Indian Ocean. This study aimed to isolate and identify potential pathogens associated with PWPS utilising both culture and non-culture screening techniques and inoculation trials. A total of 14 bacterial strains (those dominant in disease lesions, absent or rare in healthy tissues and considered potential pathogens in a previous study) were cultured and used to experimentally inoculate otherwise healthy individuals in an attempt to fulfil Henle-Koch's postulates. However, only one (P180R), identified as closely related (99-100% sequence identity based on 1.4 kb 16S RNA sequence) to Vibrio tubiashii, elicited signs of disease in tank experiments. Following experimental infection (which resulted in a 90% infection rate), the pathogen was also successfully re-isolated from the diseased tissues and re-inoculated in healthy corals colonies, therefore fulfilling the final stages of Henle-Koch's postulates. Finally we report that PWPS appears to be a temperature-dependent disease, with significantly higher tissue loss (ANOVA: df= 2, F=39.77, P<0.01) occurring at 30°C (1.45 ± 0.85 cm2 day−1 (mean ± SE)) compared to ambient temperatures of 28°C and 26°C (0.73 ± 0.80 cm2 day−1 (mean ± SE) and 0.51 ± 0.50 cm2 day−1 (mean ± SE), respectively).

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