Aqua Gen has received research funding for a project for implementation of the genetic marker for resistance to PD in egg production. The grant to the project is for 2.5 million Norwegian kroner from the Regional Research Fund for Central Norway.
The fish disease PD represents one of the most important loss factors in salmon farming in Europe and causes Norwegian salmon producers a yearly loss of over one billion kroner.
The disease still has a limited spread stopping in the north at Hustadvika in Møre and Romsdal. However, several outbreaks lately in central and northern Norway now threaten that area’s unique disease status.
New technology in salmon selective breeding has shown a great potential linked to the production of salmon with higher resistance to viral diseases. Aqua Gen has developed and implemented a genetic marker-based selection method in the battle against IPN, another important salmon virus. This has resulted in a markedly reduced spread and reach of this disease.
In the project “Implementing Marker-based Selection for PD-resistance in Aqua Gen’s Selective Breeding Program”, we have as a goal to scale up and further develop the technology to also include PD. This will contribute to keeping central and northern Norway PD free, as well as reducing the importance of the disease as a loss factor in Norwegian aquaculture.
The project will be carried out in cooperation with CIGENE (Centre for Integrative Genetics) at UMB (University for Environment and Bioscience) and VESO Vikan.