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Hooman Moghadam, NOFIMA project leader. (Photo: Are Berg-Jacobsen/Nofima)

Genetics may boost salmon resistance to pancreas disease

Click on the flag for more information about Norway NORWAY
Thursday, December 07, 2017, 01:20 (GMT + 9)

NOFIMA scientists developing a trial where fish were challenged against salmon pancreas disease (PD) virus observed no mortality in a particular group of fish carrying a combination of three different genetic markers on three different chromosomes.

The finding comes from the breeding nucleus of SalmoBreed and is part of the “SalmoResist” research project, led by Nofima and financed by the research Council of Norway.

The main aim of this project is to identify association between higher resistance against certain viral diseases, including PD, with the genetic content of the fish.

SalmoBreed and Nofima identified genetic markers that are linked to higher resistance against PD.

“When we identify genetic markers that explains traits of interest in the fish, we can more accurately select the individuals that are going to be used in breeding programs,” points out Hooman Moghadam, project leader from Nofima.

Moghadam explains that in this study, genetic markers, located on three different chromosomes, were found to be significantly associated with higher resistance against the PD virus.

Further the reserachers did not find any mortality among the fish that carry a combination of “good” genetic markers from those three chromosomes.

“This finding will help the scientists to identify the very genes that underlie higher tolerance or resistance against this viral disease,” states Moghadam.

For her part, Borghild Hillestad, the Genetics Manager of SalmoBreed, highlights that by acquiring a deeper understanding of the genes that control resistance to PD, it is possible to have a much stronger capacity to breed effectively for resistance to the disease.

“Genomic selection and PD seemed to be a good match, and SalmoResist confirmed that,” Hillestad claims.
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