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Tasmania Raises guard against abalone virus

Tasmania's fisheries minister has been given increased powers to introduce stringent biosecurity measures in an effort to prevent the spread of the deadly ganglioneuritis virus that has already devastated abalone in Victorian waters. Measures will encompass all aspects of the production chain

November 20, 2007

Tasmania Raises guard against abalone virus
 
Tasmania's fisheries minister has been given increased powers to introduce stringent biosecurity measures in an effort to prevent the spread of the deadly ganglioneuritis virus that has already devastated abalone in Victorian waters. Measures will encompass all aspects of the production chain.

The previously unknown herpes-like virus, which affects the abalone's nervous system, was first detected on Victoria's commercial farms in 2005, and has since spread to wild populations across the state's south-west coast, posing a threat to South Australia and Tasmania.

Abaloneforms the basis of a developing aquaculture industry in Victoria and is the basis of the state's most valuable commercial fishery with a landed value in excess of AU$60 million in 2005/06.

In a potential breakthrough in control of the disease, which The causes inflammation of the nervous tissue, resulting in curling of the foot and swelling of the mouth, scientists from Australia's Fisheries Victoria have announced they have succeeded in sequencing its DNA. The DNA profile will help authorities develop quicker and more accurate tests for the disease.

Resources

VADA Abalone Viral Ganglioneuritis (AVG) information page
VIC DPI National Abalone Virus Scientific and Management Forum

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