Elżbieta Terech-Majewska, Alicja Bernad, Joanna Pajdak, Patrycja Schulz, Karolina Naumowicz, Natalia Piotrowska,
Andrzej K. Siwicki
ABSTRACT. Whitespot (also commonly known as ich) is caused by the parasitic protozoan Ichthyophthirius multifiliis from the order Hymenostomatida. This parasite occurs throughout the world in all species of freshwater fish. Modern fish husbandry methods, especially high-intensity rearing, high stocking densities, low levels of water exchange, and the lack of the parasite’s natural predators, facilitate the sustained occurrence of this parasite in aquaculture. In Poland, this disease is diagnosed systematically, and it is likely caused by the common occurrence of the parasite in the aquatic environment. Despite having a good understanding of the parasite’s biology and its impact on its host and its immune system, to date, no effective immunoprophylactic therapies have been developed. The foundation of protecting fish against I. multiphiliis is diagnostic monitoring and the application of biocides. In practice, formalin, chloramine T, and copper sulphate are used most frequently in various therapeutic procedures. The effectiveness of these therapies is highly dependent on environmental conditions and parasite susceptibility. However, the course of treatment often depends on the overall condition of the fish and the duration of the treatment. This paper presents selected aspects of the impact the parasite has on fish and the development of the disease. Additionally, a literature review was done to draw attention to the necessity of searching for alternative prophylaxis and treatment methods for this widespread, troublesome parasitic disease.
Keywords: Ichthyophthirius multifiliis, pathogenesis of whitespot, treatment
Przyjęto po recenzji 3.08.2016 r.