Infection of the muscle tissue of the filter-feeding cichlid, Chaetobranchopsis orbicularis Steindachner, 1875, by Kudoa orbicularis (Myxozoa: Multivalvulidae) on Marajó Island in the Brazilian Amazon region

ABSTRACT This study describes aspects of infections caused by the myxosporidian Kudoa orbicularis in filter-feeding cichlids, Chaetobranchopsis orbicularis, caught in the Arari River in the municipality of Cachoeira do Arari, on Marajó Island, Pará, Brazil. The parasite forms pseudocysts scattered throughout the striated epaxial and hypaxial muscles. Samples embedded in paraffin were analyzed histologically using hematoxylin-eosin, Gömöri, Ziehl-Neelsen, and Giemsa staining. Necropsy of the C. orbicularis specimens revealed that 100% (50/50) were infected with K. orbicularis. The specimens presented grossly abnormal muscle texture, resulting in extensive inconsistencies and weakness. Progressive softening of the muscles was observed during necropsy, indicating the rapid enzymatic autolysis of the tissue. The parasite found in the muscle tissue of C. orbicularis was identified as K. orbicularis, with clinical signs of disease being observed in the fish. The necropsy revealed extensive damage to the host organism, with well-established fibrocystic infections in the muscle fibers, associated with post mortem myoliquefaction.