Last week, FAO published a report titled “Greenhouse gas emissions from aquaculture: A life cycle assessment of three Asian systems”. Dr. Doris Soto, Senior Scientist of INCAR,  co-authored this important report.  The rationale of this study was to broaden the understanding of aquaculture’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and the potential mitigation through the management of aquaculture feeds and feeding.

The rapid growth and development of global aquaculture has raised questions regarding the potential associated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. To gauge the scale of GHG emission in Asia, where growth has been greatest, a preliminary study was carried out on three aquaculture systems: Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) in Bangladesh, Indian major carps (Catla catla, Cirrhinus cirrhosus, Labeo calbasu, Labeo rohita) in India, and striped catfish (Pangasianodon hypophthalmus) in Viet Nam. The analysis was intended to improve understanding of where and how GHG emissions arise in Asian aquaculture, and highlight weaknesses in the currently available data. This approach will guide future

studies on how to develop cost-effective ways of improving aquaculture performance and reducing emissions, and how to improve data collection.

Robb, D.H.F., MacLeod, M., Hasan, M.R. & Soto, D. 2017. Greenhouse gas emissions from aquaculture: a life cycle assessment of three Asian systems. FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper No. 609. Rome, FAO. 110 pp.

To download the full report, click on the following link: http://www.fao.org/3/A-I7558E.PDF

“The Animal Health Line (RP3) of INCAR was awarded two postdoctoral CONICYT projects in 2017.”

“The Animal Health Line (RP3) of INCAR was awarded two postdoctoral CONICYT projects in 2017.”

Dr. Roxana González Stegmeier and Dr. René Manriquez Vásquez will be responsible for performing the relevant studies in the bacterium Piscirickettsia salmonis and the infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNv). The project of Dr. Gonzalez-Stegmeier is entitled “Biotechnological application of flagellin and derived peptides as adjuvant and immunostimulant in S. salar during immunization and infection with P. salmonis”. This project is part of the research lines of the Laboratory of Fish Molecular Biology of the Biochemistry and Microbiology Institute of the Universidad Austral de Chile. This project will complement two current studies; FONDECYT 1130069, which in its fourth year is performing a genomic analysis of strains of P. salmonis, and FONDAP project 15110027 of the INCAR Center, which studies current and emergent pathogens that affect aquiculture activities in Chile. Dr. Gonzalez expects the results of her project to demonstrate the use of flagellin as immunostimulant and adjuvant to improve the sanitary status of mass-farmed fish and contribute to a decrease in the use of antibiotics in the salmon industry.

 

The project of Dr. Rene Manriquez Vásquez, entitled “Epigenome of the infection with the infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNv) in the Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar): Identification of epigenetic markers for the development of therapeutic targets”, intends to generate the first methyloma database in salmonids in different stages of smolting; it is sponsored by INCAR researcher Dr. Alejandro Yáñez. This will allow detection of the changes in the methyloma due to IPNv infection. Discovering the key epigenetic markers during the infection process should allow the identification of therapeutic targets which may be used to improve the response of fish to the infection.

This project will extend the research that Dr. Manriquez performed for his doctorate on epigenetic regulation during infection processes in salmonids. The results of this new project are expected to open new research lines, such as prognosis in the pre-clinical evaluation of vaccines, identifying epigenetic markers of developmental stages (smolt) that would allow “epigenetic programs” to be established according to the farming conditions or the requirements of the producer, among other research areas.

The full text of this article is available in Spanish in the Spanish version of the INCAR Website.

“Intestinal miRNOma in fish: Clearing up the role of microRNAS in the interaction between the host and microbiota of Atlantic salmon fed with functional diets.”

“Intestinal miRNOma in fish: Clearing up the role of microRNAS in the interaction between the host and microbiota of Atlantic salmon fed with functional diets.”

In intensive aquiculture fish are often exposed to weakening conditions that compromise their health and resistance to diseases. One strategy to mitigate the effects of stressors is to improve their wellbeing and condition by feeding them functional diets that regulate dysbiosis. The best-studied functional diets are those supplemented with pre- and probiotics, which are known to have benefits on growth, digestion, immune response and stress resistance, mainly due to the modes of action of these bioactive compounds that include modulation of the intestinal microbiota with beneficial consequences for the host.

One of the positive impacts of a microbiota is its capacity to generate stability in health and resistance to diseases, which include improvement in nutrient digestion and absorption, improvement of the cell architecture of the intestinal epithelium and an increase in immune competence against pathogens. However, it is still not known how the intestinal microbiota is related to fish health in terms of disease resistance and the effects of the modulation by functional diets.

Dr. Ana Teresa Gonçalves, researcher associated with Research Line RP1 (Technology in Aquiculture Genomics) of INCAR is beginning to develop the FONDECYT Initiation project entitled “Fish intestine miRNome: disentangling the microRNAS role between host and microbiota interplaying in Atlantic salmon fed with functional diets”, in which she expects to elucidate the molecular mechanisms that regulate the link between the host and microbiota to generate better health and immunity with functional diets. The objective of the project is to investigate the role of microRNAs in the relation between host and intestinal microbiota when fish recover their homeostasis due to functional diets, evaluating the molecular regulator mechanisms involved in this relation by massive sequencing. Among the first results of the project will be solid conjectures on the future application of miRNAs in improving the efficiency of functional diets, expecting to provide scientific information on strategies that contribute to sustainable aquiculture.

This information is crucial to optimize and make strategic improvements in the nutritional supplements and functional diets in aquiculture.

The full text of this article is available in Spanish in the Spanish version of the INCAR Website.

“INCAR and the Center for Intercultural and Indigenous Studies sin agreement of scientific collaboration.”

“INCAR and the Center for Intercultural and Indigenous Studies sin agreement of scientific collaboration.”

The director of the CIIR, Dr. Pedro Meje, and the director of INCAR, Dr. Renato Quiñones, met on December 21, 2016 in Santiago to sign a Scientific Collaboration Agreement between these centers. This agreement intends to potentiate a synergistic interaction in the field of coastal anthropology, in particular in the study of the use of the marine territory by the communities of the original inhabitants, such as small-scale aquiculture and the sustainable use of the Coastal Marine Spaces for Original Peoples (ECMPO).

The CIIR is a FONDAP center of excellence dedicated to interdisciplinary and collaborative research in topic linked to original peoples and intercultural relations in Chile, formed by a group of researchers in disciplines such as anthropology, sociology, public health, history, etc., from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Universidad Diego Portales and the Universidad Academia de Humanismo Cristiano. The CIIR is focused mainly on four action lines to confront problems linked with multicultural recognition: Public policies; Development and Environment; Cultural Heritage; and Subjectivities and Conflicts.

“Scientists of INCAR (UDEC) and the University of Washington (USA) identified new genes that interact with saxitoxin in the Chilean mussel Mytilus chilensis.”

“Scientists of INCAR (UDEC) and the University of Washington (USA) identified new genes that interact with saxitoxin in the Chilean mussel Mytilus chilensis.”

Saxitoxin (STX) is a phycotoxin that contributes to paralytic intoxication from eating bivalve mollusks; it is produced by marine microalgae of the genus Alexandrium. This toxin affects a wide range of species, inducing massive mortality of fish and other marine species. However, marine bivalves can resist and accumulate the paralyzing venom. Many marine species are affected by STX by ingesting dinoflagellates, especially filter feeders such as bivalves. STX may reduce reproductive and growth rates, especially in marine bivalves, and may be one of the main causes of mortality in natural populations.

The experimental design was composed of two separate experiments. (A) An evaluation of the whole transcriptome was performed after direct injection of purified Saxitoxin in mussels, followed by RNA sequencing using the HiSeq2000 platform (Illumina, San Diego, USA) and bioinformatics analysis with the commercial CLC Genomic Workbench software (CLC Bio, Denmark). Complementary to this, (B) a validation assay was performed by exposing mussels to toxic Alexandrium catanella and non-toxic Alexandrium tamarense, followed by evaluating the expression levels of selected transcripts through RT-qPCR.

The complete publication may be found at: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0165231