Aquaculture for all

Disease guideTaura syndrome

What is it?

Taura syndrome (TS), caused by TS virus, has resulted in serious disease epizootics throughout the shrimp-growing regions of the Western Hemisphere.

Following its recognition in 1992 as a distinct disease of cultured shrimp in Ecuador, TS has spread rapidly throughout many of the shrimp-farming regions of the Americas through shipments of infected PL and broodstock.

The virus has recently been introduced into Asia through infected imported Pacific white shrimp from Central and South American sources.

TS virus was recently placed in the genus "Cricket paralysis-like viruses". The virus replicates in the cytoplasm of host cells.

Where and when might it occur?

Affecting mainly the Pacific white shrimp, TS appears globally. Survivors of TS infections may carry the virus for life and therefore infect stocks.

TS has been demonstrated to remain infectious in the faeces of sea gulls that have ingested infected shrimp carcasses, which may implicate birds as being an important route of transmission of the virus within affected farms or farming regions.


Mortalities usually range between 40 to >90 percent in cultured populations of postlarval, juvenile and subadult shrimp. Lesions usually appear during the acute phase of the disease and are present in specific target tissues, especially the cuticular epithelium. In chronic-phase infections, lymphoid organ spheroids are the only lesion apparent in shrimp with persistent TS infections.

Control and treatment

Eradication methods for TS have been successfully applied to certain aquaculture situations. These methods are dependent on the total depopulation of infected stocks, disinfection of the culture facility, avoidance of re-introduction of the virus from other nearby culture facilities, wild shrimp, etc. and re-stocking with TS-free postlarvae that have been produced from TS-free broodstock.

Source: OIE

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