R/ODR-20 A


In Situ Determination of Perkinsus marinus Transmission Dynamics in Low Salinity Habitats: Implications for Disease Avoidance Management Strategies and Oyster Restoration (Virginia Portion)

Principal Investigator:

Eugene M. Burreson

Start/End Year:

2001 - 2004


Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Co-Principal Investigator:

Kimberly S. Reese, Lisa M. Ragone Calvo, Virginia Institute of Marine Studies



The overall project objective is to determine the transmission dynamics of P. marinus in low salinity areas in order to develop disease avoidance strategies and to promote wise and effective restoration of oyster populations in low salinity regions of Chesapeake Bay. Specifically we propose to: ( 1) optimize highly sensitive and quantitative PCR diagnostic techniques for the detection and enumeration of water-borne stages of P. marinus from water column samples (2) determine the abundance of water-borne P. marinus cells at four sites located in low salinity areas (9-14 ppt) of three Chesapeake Bay tributaries, the Choptank, Patuxent, and James Rivers, using highly sensitive, specific, and quantitative PCR techniques and (3) determine relative P. marinus infection rates at the same four low salinity sites by monitoring infection acquisition in uninfected sentinel oysters deployed at each site.

Related Publications:

Paynter, KT; Goodwin, JD; Chen, ME; Ward, NJ; Sherman, MW; Meritt, DW; Allen, SK. 2008. Crassostrea ariakensis in Chesapeake Bay: Growth, disease and mortality in shallow subtidal environments. Journal of Shellfish Research27(3):509 -515. doi:10.2983/0730-8000(2008)27[509:CAICBG]2.0.CO;2. UM-SG-RS-2008-04.

Dungan, CF; Reece, KS; Hamilton, RM; Stokes, NA; Burreson, EM. 2007. Experimental cross-infections by Perkinsus marinus and P. chesapeaki in three sympatric species of Chesapeake Bay oysters and clams. Diseases of Aquatic Organisms76(1):67 -75. doi:10.3354/dao076067. UM-SG-RS-2007-21.

Audemard, C; Calvo, LMR; Paynter, KT; Reece, KS; Burreson, EM. 2006. Real-time PCR investigation of parasite ecology: in situ determination of oyster parasite Perkinsus marinus transmission dynamics in lower Chesapeake Bay. Parasitology132:827 -842. doi:10.1017/S0031182006009851. UM-SG-RS-2006-13.

Burreson, EM; Reece, KS; Dungan, CF. 2005. Molecular, morphological, and experimental evidence support the synonymy of Perkinsus chesapeaki and Perkinsus andrewsi. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology52(3):258 -270. doi:10.1111/j.1550-7408.2005.05-00035.x. UM-SG-RS-2005-22.

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