Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Can we identify escaped salmon by means of their DNA?

01.09.2004


Escaped salmon are a problem for the fish-farming industry. Is it possible to identify the fish-farm from which salmon have escaped by testing a sample of their DNA? Scientists at the Institute of Marine Research in Bergen have been looking into the prospects of doing so.



Escapees are a major problem for fish farming, not only for the farmers who lose their fish, but also for stocks of wild salmon. This is because cultivated salmon have been bred to thrive in an artificial environment without predators, with plenty of food and without the need to migrate and orient over huge geographic distances. When these characteristics of farmed salmon are cross-bred into wild salmon stocks, we end up with salmon that are less well adapted to life in their natural environment, and such stocks suffer higher mortality rates.

For this reason, it has been suggested that natural DNA markers that are found in all salmon might be used to trace escapees back to the ongrowing farm from which they have escaped, so that future inspections could be concentrated on farms that tend to lose fish.


Breeding line identified with 95% certainty

In order to find out whether this is actually possible, scientists at the Institute of Marine Research carried out a pilot study. The first things that they found out were that there are major differences among breeding lines, and that they could identify the line that any given salmon comes from, to a certainty of better than 95%.

However, in the aquaculture industry, roe and fish are sorted, grouped and distributed from breeding populations to broodstock stations and on to hundreds of smolt farms, and then further on to hundreds more ongrowing farms. These logistical conditions mean that DNA profiles based on references from breeding plants or broodstocks would not be sufficient to identify the ongrowing farm from which an escaped fish had come.

Useful when many fish have escaped at the same time

If large numbers of escaped fish are discovered soon after they have escaped, however, DNA profiles can still identify the ongrowing farm that they came from, at least in some cases. In the pilot study, the scientists took samples from seven different deliveries of smolt to four ongrowing farms. With the aid of seven natural DNA markers it was possible to identify the fish farm from which seven out of ten “escapees” had come. This means that the method could be of interest in major escape episodes.

To the present day, there exists no professional monitoring system for aquaculture, in contrast to the monitoring programmes that are under way in Norway’s marine regions and in traditional fisheries.

Any method of identifying escaped fish would be dependent on a operational monitoring system capable of discovering escapees rapidly, sampling them and sending the samples for analysis.

Øystein Skaala, | alfa
Further information:
http://www.imr.no
http://www.imr.no/english/main

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht NUI Galway highlights reproductive flexibility in hydractinia, a Galway bay jellyfish
24.02.2020 | National University of Ireland Galway

nachricht Shaping the rings of molecules
24.02.2020 | University of Montreal

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A step towards controlling spin-dependent petahertz electronics by material defects

The operational speed of semiconductors in various electronic and optoelectronic devices is limited to several gigahertz (a billion oscillations per second). This constrains the upper limit of the operational speed of computing. Now researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, Germany, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay have explained how these processes can be sped up through the use of light waves and defected solid materials.

Light waves perform several hundred trillion oscillations per second. Hence, it is natural to envision employing light oscillations to drive the electronic...

Im Focus: Freiburg researcher investigate the origins of surface texture

Most natural and artificial surfaces are rough: metals and even glasses that appear smooth to the naked eye can look like jagged mountain ranges under the microscope. There is currently no uniform theory about the origin of this roughness despite it being observed on all scales, from the atomic to the tectonic. Scientists suspect that the rough surface is formed by irreversible plastic deformation that occurs in many processes of mechanical machining of components such as milling.

Prof. Dr. Lars Pastewka from the Simulation group at the Department of Microsystems Engineering at the University of Freiburg and his team have simulated such...

Im Focus: Skyrmions like it hot: Spin structures are controllable even at high temperatures

Investigation of the temperature dependence of the skyrmion Hall effect reveals further insights into possible new data storage devices

The joint research project of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that had previously demonstrated...

Im Focus: Making the internet more energy efficient through systemic optimization

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded several scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.

Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now.

Im Focus: New synthesis methods enhance 3D chemical space for drug discovery

After helping develop a new approach for organic synthesis -- carbon-hydrogen functionalization -- scientists at Emory University are now showing how this approach may apply to drug discovery. Nature Catalysis published their most recent work -- a streamlined process for making a three-dimensional scaffold of keen interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

"Our tools open up whole new chemical space for potential drug targets," says Huw Davies, Emory professor of organic chemistry and senior author of the paper.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

NUI Galway highlights reproductive flexibility in hydractinia, a Galway bay jellyfish

24.02.2020 | Life Sciences

KIST researchers develop high-capacity EV battery materials that double driving range

24.02.2020 | Materials Sciences

How earthquakes deform gravity

24.02.2020 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>