Host Stress Response Is Important for the Pathogenesis of the Deadly Amphibian Disease, Chytridiomycosis, in Litoria caerulea

John D. Peterson, John Edward Steffen, Laura K. Reinert, Paul A. Cobine, Arthur Appel, Louise Rollins-Smith, Mary T. Mendonça

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Chytridiomycosis, a disease caused by Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, has contributed to worldwide amphibian population declines; however, the pathogenesis of this disease is still somewhat unclear. Previous studies suggest that infection disrupts cutaneous sodium transport, which leads to hyponatremia and cardiac failure. However, infection is also correlated with unexplained effects on appetite, skin shedding, and white blood cell profiles. Glucocorticoid hormones may be the biochemical connection between these disparate effects, because they regulate ion homeostasis and can also influence appetite, skin shedding, and white blood cells. During a laboratory outbreak of B. dendrobatidis in Australian Green Tree Frogs, Litoria caerulea, we compared frogs showing clinical signs of chytridiomycosis to infected frogs showing no signs of disease and determined that diseased frogs had elevated baseline corticosterone, decreased plasma sodium and potassium, and altered WBC profiles. Diseased frogs also showed evidence of poorer body condition and elevated metabolic rates compared with frogs showing no signs of disease. Prior to displaying signs of disease, we also observed changes in appetite, body mass, and the presence of shed skin associated with infected but not yet diseased frogs. Collectively, these results suggest that elevated baseline corticosterone is associated with chytridiomycosis and correlates with some of the deleterious effects observed during disease development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere62146
JournalPLoS One
Volume8
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 22 2013

Fingerprint

Amphibians
amphibians
frogs
stress response
pathogenesis
Anura
appetite
skin (animal)
leukocytes
Skin
Chytridiomycota
Appetite
corticosterone
Corticosterone
Blood
Sodium
Cells
sodium
hyponatremia
sheds

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Peterson, J. D., Steffen, J. E., Reinert, L. K., Cobine, P. A., Appel, A., Rollins-Smith, L., & Mendonça, M. T. (2013). Host Stress Response Is Important for the Pathogenesis of the Deadly Amphibian Disease, Chytridiomycosis, in Litoria caerulea. PLoS One, 8(4), [e62146]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0062146
Peterson, John D. ; Steffen, John Edward ; Reinert, Laura K. ; Cobine, Paul A. ; Appel, Arthur ; Rollins-Smith, Louise ; Mendonça, Mary T. / Host Stress Response Is Important for the Pathogenesis of the Deadly Amphibian Disease, Chytridiomycosis, in Litoria caerulea. In: PLoS One. 2013 ; Vol. 8, No. 4.
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abstract = "Chytridiomycosis, a disease caused by Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, has contributed to worldwide amphibian population declines; however, the pathogenesis of this disease is still somewhat unclear. Previous studies suggest that infection disrupts cutaneous sodium transport, which leads to hyponatremia and cardiac failure. However, infection is also correlated with unexplained effects on appetite, skin shedding, and white blood cell profiles. Glucocorticoid hormones may be the biochemical connection between these disparate effects, because they regulate ion homeostasis and can also influence appetite, skin shedding, and white blood cells. During a laboratory outbreak of B. dendrobatidis in Australian Green Tree Frogs, Litoria caerulea, we compared frogs showing clinical signs of chytridiomycosis to infected frogs showing no signs of disease and determined that diseased frogs had elevated baseline corticosterone, decreased plasma sodium and potassium, and altered WBC profiles. Diseased frogs also showed evidence of poorer body condition and elevated metabolic rates compared with frogs showing no signs of disease. Prior to displaying signs of disease, we also observed changes in appetite, body mass, and the presence of shed skin associated with infected but not yet diseased frogs. Collectively, these results suggest that elevated baseline corticosterone is associated with chytridiomycosis and correlates with some of the deleterious effects observed during disease development.",
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Peterson, JD, Steffen, JE, Reinert, LK, Cobine, PA, Appel, A, Rollins-Smith, L & Mendonça, MT 2013, 'Host Stress Response Is Important for the Pathogenesis of the Deadly Amphibian Disease, Chytridiomycosis, in Litoria caerulea', PLoS One, vol. 8, no. 4, e62146. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0062146

Host Stress Response Is Important for the Pathogenesis of the Deadly Amphibian Disease, Chytridiomycosis, in Litoria caerulea. / Peterson, John D.; Steffen, John Edward; Reinert, Laura K.; Cobine, Paul A.; Appel, Arthur; Rollins-Smith, Louise; Mendonça, Mary T.

In: PLoS One, Vol. 8, No. 4, e62146, 22.04.2013.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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