A multidisciplinary team of scientists has been awarded £1.5m to develop an oral vaccine to combat sea lice in farmed Atlantic salmon.

The project is a pivotal step towards a sustainable and effective solution to the pervasive challenges posed by sea lice in the aquaculture industry.

Funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), the project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Moredun Research Institute (MRI), the University of Stirling’s Institute of Aquaculture (IoA), Bimeda Animal Health (BAH), which also provided a contribution of £150,000, and Vertebrate Antibodies Ltd (VAL) with an Industrial Award Partnership contribution from BAH.

Dr Kim Thompson of the Moredun Research Institute, who is leading the project, said: “The development of an innovative salmon louse vaccine represents a groundbreaking approach in the aquaculture industry.

“By harnessing the power of reverse vaccinology and artificial intelligence, our interdisciplinary team is poised to deliver a practical, safe, and environmentally friendly solution for combating the problem of salmon lice.

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