White spot disease (WSD) is caused by white spot syndrome virus (WSSV). WSSV is the only member of the genus Whispovirus within the Nimaviridae family, with a large genome of 293-307kb.
All decapod crustaceans are susceptible to the disease, however it mainly affects Penaeus monodon (farmed prawns). Clinical signs of disease can include high mortality, development of white spots on the exoskeleton, lethargy, sudden reduction in feeding, red discoloration of body and appendages and a loose carapace.
The diagnostic methods include:
- Real-Time PCR and Sequencing
Additional information on WSD and WSSV: