Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …


More options …
Volume 68, Issue 6


Use of formic acid to control vibriosis in shrimp aquaculture

Derek Adams / Raj Boopathy
Published Online: 2013-10-20 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-013-0251-x


Luminous vibriosis is a shrimp disease that causes major economic losses in shrimp industry as a result of massive shrimp kills due to bacterial infection caused by Vibrio species. Use of antibiotics to control Vibrio in shrimp aquaculture is not allowed in the United States and so it is necessary to develop an alternative pathogen control method for shrimp production. Short-chain fatty acids have been used as food preservatives for a long time. Organic acids are commonly added in feeds in animal production, such as chicken, pig, and cattle. In this study, growth inhibition effects of formic acid on five selected Vibrio species, namely Vibrio alginolyticus, Vibrio cholerae, Vibrio harveyi, Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Vibrio vulnificus were studied. The Vibrio bacteria were grown on both solid and liquid media using Muller-Hinton agar and alkaline peptone water, respectively, with various concentrations of formic acid. Bacterial growth was monitored in the liquid media using optical density method. The results showed significant inhibition of growth of all five Vibrio species by formic acid at low concentration. The effective concentration (EC50) values were calculated for all five Vibrio species, which were less than 0.039% of formic acid. The results are encouraging to supplement formic acid in the shrimp feed as a control mechanism to reduce Vibrio outbreak in shrimp aquaculture system.

Keywords: vibriosis; luminescence; EC50; shrimp aquaculture; antibiotic resistance

  • [1] Anonymous. 1999. Laboratory Methods for the Diagnosis of Epidemic Dysentery and Cholera, pp. 62–72. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Google Scholar

  • [2] Brock J.A. & LeaMaster B. 1992. A look at the principal bacterial, fungal and parasitic diseases of farmed shrimp, pp. 212–226. In: Wyban J. (ed.) Proceedings of the Special Session on Shrimp Farming. World Aquaculture Society, Baton Rouge, LA, USA. Google Scholar

  • [3] Chaveerach P., Keuzenkamp D.A., Urlings H.A.P., Lipman L.J.A. & van Knapen F. 2002. In vitro study on the effect of organic acids on Campylobacter jenuni/coli populations in mixtures of water and feed. Poultry Sci. 81: 621–628. CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [4] Doyle M.P., Beuchat L.R. & Montville T.J. 2001. Food Microbiology: Fundamentals and Frontiers. American Society for Microbiology, Washington, D.C., 872 pp. Google Scholar

  • [5] Franco L.D., Fondevila M., Lobera M.B. & Castrillo C. 2005. Effect of combinations of organic acids in weaned pig diets on microbial species of digestive tract contents and their response on digestibility. J. Anim. Physiol. Anim. Nutr. 89: 88–93. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1439-0396.2005.00553.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [6] Gillett R. 2008. Global Study of Shrimp Fisheries. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper, No. 475. Rome, FAO, 331 pp. Google Scholar

  • [7] Graslund S & Bengtsson B.K. 2001. Chemicals and biological products used in south-east Asian shrimp farming, and their potential impact on the environment — a review. Sci. Total Environ. 280: 93–131. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0048-9697(01)00818-XCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [8] Hernandez Serrano P. 2005. Responsible Use of Antibiotics in Aquaculture. FAO Fisheries Technical Paper, No. 469. Rome, FAO, 97 pp. Google Scholar

  • [9] Iba A.M. & Berchieri A. 1995. Studies on the use of a formic acidpropionic acid mixture (Bio-add™) to control experimental Salmonella infection in broiler chickens. Avian Pathol. 24: 303–311. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03079459508419071CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [10] Khan M. & Katamay M. 1969. Antagonistic effect of fatty acids against Salmonella in meat and bone meal. Appl. Microbiol. 17: 402–404. Google Scholar

  • [11] Krieg N.R., Holt J.G., Murray R.G.E., Brenner D.J., Bryant M.P., Moulder J.W., Pfennig N., Sneath P.H.A. & Staley J.T. 1984. In: Bergey’s Manual of Systematic Bacteriology, Vol. 1, pp. 518–519. Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore, MD, USA. Google Scholar

  • [12] Le T.X. & Munekage Y. 2004. Residues of selected antibiotics in water and mud from shrimp ponds in mangrove areas in Vietnam. Mar. Pollut. Bull. 49: 922–929. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2004.06.016CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [13] Lightner D.V. 1996. In: A Handbook of Shrimp Pathology and Diagnostic Procedures for Disease of Cultures Penaeid Shrimp, pp. 126–145. World Aquaculture Society, Baton Rouge, LA, USA. Google Scholar

  • [14] Lightner D.V. 2005. Biosecurity in shrimp farming: pathogen exclusion through use of SPF stock and routine surveillance. J. World Aquacult. Soc. 36: 229–248. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1749-7345.2005.tb00328.xCrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [15] Lightner D.V. & McVey J.P. 1993. CRC Handbook of Mariculture, Vol. 1: Crustacean Aquaculture. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, 420 pp. Google Scholar

  • [16] Lueck E. 1980. Antimicrobial Food Additives. Spriger-Verlag, Berlin, Heidelberg, New York, 162 pp. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-96570-8CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [17] Lyle-Fritch L.P., Romero-Beltran E. & Paez-Osuna F. 2006. A survey on use of the chemical and biological products for shrimp farming in Sinaloa, NW Mexico. Aquacult. Eng. 35: 135–146. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.aquaeng.2005.09.006CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [18] O’Bryen P.J. & Lee C. 2003. Discussion summary on biosecurity in aquaculture production systems: exclusion of pathogens and other undesirables, pp. 275–293. The World Aquaculture Society, Baton Rouge, LA USA. Google Scholar

  • [19] Saarikoski J. & Vilukseta M. 1981. Influence of pH on the toxicity of substituted phenols to fish. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 10: 747–753. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/BF01054858CrossrefGoogle Scholar

  • [20] Saori M. & Boopathy R. 2011. Effect of organic acids on shrimp pathogen, Vibrio harveyi. Curr. Microbiol. 63: 1–7. http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00284-011-9932-2CrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [21] Tanaka Y., Kimura B., Takahashi H., Watanabe T., Obata H., Kai A., Morozumi S. & Fuji T. 2008. Lysine decarboxylase of Vibrio parahaemolyticus: kinetics of transcription and role in acid resistance. J. Appl. Microbiol. 104: 1283–1293. http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2672.2007.03652.xCrossrefWeb of ScienceGoogle Scholar

  • [22] Verschuere L., Rombaut G., Sorgeloos P. & Verstraete W. 2000. Probiotic bacteria as biological control agents in aquaculture. Microbiol. Mol. Biol. Rev. 64: 655–671. http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/MMBR.64.4.655-671.2000CrossrefGoogle Scholar

About the article

Published Online: 2013-10-20

Published in Print: 2013-12-01

Citation Information: Biologia, Volume 68, Issue 6, Pages 1017–1021, ISSN (Online) 1336-9563, ISSN (Print) 0006-3088, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/s11756-013-0251-x.

Export Citation

© 2013 Slovak Academy of Sciences. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

María Auxiliadora Sotomayor, Jessica Karina Reyes, Leda Restrepo, Cristóbal Domínguez-Borbor, Martha Maldonado, Bonny Bayot, and Pantelis Katharios
PLOS ONE, 2019, Volume 14, Number 1, Page e0210478
Jun Yang, Zao-Hai Zeng, Man-Jun Yang, Zhi-Xue Cheng, Xuan-Xian Peng, and Hui Li
Environmental Microbiology, 2018
Neill Jurgens Goosen, Lourens Francois De Wet, and Johann Ferdinand Görgens
Aquaculture International, 2018
Wing-Keong Ng and Chik-Boon Koh
Reviews in Aquaculture, 2016, Page n/a
Haipeng Cao, Jian An, Weidong Zheng, and Shan He
Journal of Invertebrate Pathology, 2015, Volume 130, Page 13
Sivasubramanian Santhakumari, Arunachalam Kannappan, Shunmugiah Karutha Pandian, Nooruddin Thajuddin, Ramaswamy Babu Rajendran, and Arumugam Veera Ravi
Journal of Applied Phycology, 2016, Volume 28, Number 1, Page 313
Raj Boopathy, Clayton Kern, and Angie Corbin
International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation, 2015, Volume 102, Page 159
Bruno Corrêa da Silva, Felipe do Nascimento Vieira, José Luiz Pedreira Mouriño, Norha Bolivar, and Walter Quadros Seiffert
Aquaculture Research, 2016, Volume 47, Number 2, Page 612

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in