Great collaboration and exchange between ParaFishControl partners

ParaFishControl project relies upon close collaboration between partners. Working together supports the European aquaculture business to address many challenges caused by parasites.

Vaccines against parasites have been efficacy tested in consortium within ParaFishControl. An example of this cooperation is related to the development of a recombinant vaccine. Following a series of bioinformatic investigations our German partner, W42 produced a recombinant vaccine against Ichthyophthirius multifiliis

Figure 1: Vaccination of carp (Photo: Fish Pathology and Parasitology Team, IVMR CAR – former MTA)

This vaccine was tested in Hungary for common carp by the Fish Pathology and Parasitology Research Team of the Institute for Veterinary Medical Research, Centre for Agricultural Research, (former Hungarian Academy of Sciences - MTA) and for rainbow trout in Denmark by the University of Copenhagen (KU) and the Technical University of Denmark (DTU). This was a fine demonstration of the integrated ParaFishControl team and the infrastructure with easy communication within the European community. Samples are still being processed so the results from the trials will appear later.

Fish Pathology and Parasitology Team sampling blood from carp after vaccination (Photo: Fish Pathology and Parasitology Team, IVMR CAR – former MTA)

True collaborations in our EU networks - crossing over from ideas via production of prototypes to final tests in different host species - have been rewarding. Although we have not achieved the full control of parasitic infections based on vaccines, our fundamental knowledge of fish immunology and parasite-host interactions has been expanded significantly. The results have prepared the ground for future fish parasitological studies.

The rich treasure box of new approaches developed within ParaFishControl has enabled the University of Copenhagen to continue running a new programme for selective breeding of parasite resistant fish. This will be complemented by a conference on genetic selection and breeding programmes in autumn 2020 and an International Congress for Parasitology in 2022, both held at the University of Copenhagen. Fish parasitology will be featured at these events as a key topic for the future.