Environmental and pathogen impacts on immune development in commercial aquaculture species

The aquaculture industry in the U.S. has the potential to alleviate the chronic stress being placed on wild fisheries by supplying the considerable demand for seafood within the US and beyond. The position and strength of the aquaculture industry within Maine indicates that it can be a significant player in this industry. Health issues will always be key in developing a sustainable aquaculture industry as commercial cultivation of any species will inevitably lead to changes in host/pathogen dynamics, usually as a consequence of intensive culture and monoculture. It is clear that lack of a thorough knowledge of host/pathogen interactions has restricted the development of competent epidemiological models for aquaculture. This project aims to improve our understanding of the factors that impact on aquatic animal immunity and thus of the health of these animals when placed in commercial culture situations. This will inform the development of improved management strategies and more effective integrated pest management plans, which will allow the industry to become more sustainable through improved productivity.

Investigator: Bowden, T.

Unit: School of Food and Agriculture

Termination Date: 30-Sep-17