New aquaculture technology in the making
The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) says it is working with governments and industry in the UK and Asia to develop new DNA-based diagnostic technology, linked to data reporting by smartphone, which can be used by local famers at the “pond side” to rapidly detect potentially devastating diseases such as White Spot Syndrome Virus (WSSV).
Cefas is leading field trials in Thailand where WSSV and other emergent problems such “Early Mortality Syndrome” have led to a halving of annual yield and profit from the shrimp industry. It is hoped that the new approach will enable faster management of infection and disease and more effective control of outbreaks.
Professor Grant Stentiford of Cefas comments: “Decentralised diagnostics combined with technology-driven field reporting has the ability to bridge the significant knowledge gap between farmers, scientists, aquatic health professionals, and policy makers at national, regional and global levels.”