Identification of atypical Aeromonas salmonicida : Inter-laboratory evaluation and harmonization of methods

Inger Dalsgaard, B.K. Gudmundsdottir, S. Helgason, S. Høie, O.F. Thoresen, U.P. Wichardt, T. Wiklund

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The atypical isolates of Aeromonas salmonicida are becoming increasingly important as the frequency of isolation of bacteria belonging to this group continues to rise. The primary object of this study was to compare and evaluate the results obtained in various laboratories concerning the biochemical identification of atypical Aer. salmonicida before and after standardization of media and methods. Five laboratories examined 25 isolates of Aer. salmonicida from diverse fish species and geographical locations including the reference strains of Aer. salmonicida subsp, salmonicida (NCMB 1102) and Aer. salmonicida subsp. achromogenes (NCMB 1110), Without standardization of the methods, 100% agreement was obtained only for two tests: motility and ornithine decarboxylase. The main reason for the discrepancies found was the variation of the incubation time prior to reading the biochemical reactions. After standardization, improvement was obtained with the identification; however, disagreement was still observed between the different laboratories. These findings demonstrate the difficulties involved in a proper identification of atypical Aer. salmonicida and also that data presented in the literature on various strains of Aer. salmonicida are not readily comparable. This paper seems to be the first on standardization of microbiological tests for identification of fish pathogens and the results obtained show the need for standardization of methods both within and between laboratories.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Applied Microbiology
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)999-1006
Publication statusPublished - 1998


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