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Department of Biological Sciences (BIO)

Industry – Research: a win-win

When industry and research work closely together, both benefit. The mutual link between aquaculture and research is a case in point where the benefits reach far beyond simple production numbers.

For over 30 years researchers have been working closely with industry. The results are improved efficiency, better products, improved animal welfare, greater diversity, decreased environmental impact … to name just a few.

This collaboration may be on the cusp of taking a giant step forward.

In 2008 fish biologists from European and peri-European countries came together under the LarvaNet project funded by the European Cooperation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research (COST). BIO researchers has had important role in the COST action with Karin Pittman as the leader of Work Package  (WP) 1 and Ivar Rønnestad as Management committee member. This summer a number of state-of-the-art results were published in in a series of 8 review articles in an Open Access issue of Reviews in Aquaculture (impact factor over 4 – a much higher impact factor than aquaculture usually gets!). These results will significantly impact how we look at fish as food animals.

Karin Pittman was leader of WP1 in LarvaNet charged with herding the scientists into making these reviews. The reviews cover brood stock, gamete quality, microbiology, skeletal development and abnormalities, digestion and nutrition, growth potential and juvenile quality as well as the importance of the inherent plasticity of fishes to aquaculture and fisheries. Since the reviews are open access Karin points out that these papers can and should be distributed broadly- please pass this link on to your colleagues or print out the articles and send to those who do not have good internet access.

After a few decades of aquaculture research we know the more of the basic biology fish as animals better than we ever did after millennia of fishing. Read more in the reviews!

BIO researchers who are co-authors on some of these review articles:

Ivar Rønnestad: “Fish larval nutrition and feed formulation: knowledge gaps and bottlenecks for advances in larval rearing.”

Ivar Rønnestad: “Feeding behaviour and digestive physiology in larval fish: current knowledge, and gaps and bottlenecks in research

Karin Pittman, Audrey Geffen: “Fantastically plastic: fish larvae equipped for a new world