Establishment of a rare minnow (Gobiocypris rarus) model for evaluation of experimental vaccines against a disease induced by grass carp reovirus genotype II

Vaccination is the most effective way to control the grass carp haemorrhagic disease (GCHD) with the primary pathogen grass carp reovirus genotype II (GCRV-II). However, due to the large difference in breeding conditions and unclear genetic background of grass carp, the results of the experiment were not reliable, which further hinders the effective prevention and control of GCHD. The rare minnow (Gobiocypris rarus) is highly sensitive to GCRV. Its small size, easy feeding, transparent egg membrane, and annual spawning are in line with the necessary conditions for an experimental aquatic animals culture object. In this study, immunogenicity and protective effects of attenuated and inactivated viruses for grass carp and rare minnow were evaluated in parallel. The expression of immune-related genes increased statistically significant after immunization. With the rise of specific serum antibody titers, the results of rare minnow and grass carp were consistent. In addition, there was no significant residue of adjuvant observed in both fish species injected with an adjuvanted and inactivated virus. Challenge of immunized grass carp and rare minnow with the isolate HuNan1307 resulted in protection rates of 95.8% and 92.6% for attenuated virus, 81.4% and 77.7% for inactivated virus, respectively, as well as the viral load changed consistently. The results indicated that rare minnow can be used as a model for evaluation of experimental vaccines against GCHD.

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