Detection of piscine orthoreoviruses (PRV-1 and PRV-3) in Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout farmed in Germany

Mikolaj Adamek*, John Hellmann, Agnes Flamm, Felix Teitge, Niccolò Vendramin, Daniel Fey, Karin Riße, Franziska Blakey, Espen Rimstad, Dieter Steinhagen

*Corresponding author for this work

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Piscine orthoreoviruses (PRVs) are emerging pathogens causing circulatory disorders in salmonids. PRV-1 is the etiological cause of heart and skeletal muscle inflammation (HSMI) in farmed Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar), characterized by epicarditis, inflammation and necrosis of the myocardium, myositis and necrosis of red skeletal muscle. In 2017, two German breeding farms for Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), respectively, experienced disease outbreaks with mortalities of 10% and 20%. The main clinical signs were exhaustion and lethargic behavior. During examinations, PRV-1 in the salmon and the PRV-3 in trout were detected for the first time in Germany. Further analyses also indicated the presence of Aeromonas salmonicida in internal tissues of both species. While PRV-1 could be putatively linked with the disease in Atlantic salmon, most of the rainbow trout suffered from an infection with A. salmonicida and not with PRV-3. Interestingly, the sequence analysis suggests that the German PRV-3 isolate is more similar to a Chilean PRV-3 isolate from Coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) than to PRV-3 from rainbow trout from Norway. This indicates a wide geographic distribution of this virus or dispersal by global trade. These findings indicate that infections with PRVs should be considered when investigating disease outbreaks in salmonids. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
JournalTransboundary and Emerging Diseases
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)14-21
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Aeromonas salmonicida
  • HSMI
  • PRV
  • PRV-1
  • PRV-3
  • PRV-Om
  • Heart and skeletal muscle inflammation
  • Piscine orthoreoviruses


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