A few days ago, the Scientific Committee that provides support to the new edition of the International Symposium on Genetics in Aquaculture (ISGA), which is held every year in Chile, was presented in an online meeting. During the meeting it was informed that the XIV ISGA, to be held between November 27 and December 2 in the city of Puerto Varas, in the Los Lagos region, will have as its main speaker Daniela Lourenço, associate professor of Animal Genetics and Genomics at the University of Georgia, United States (USA), currently dedicated to deepen the use of genomic information to increase genetic progress rates.

According to José Manuel Yáñez, president of the Local Organizing Committee of ISGA 2022, Lourenço is working on the development of methods for genomic evaluations and the use of computational algorithms to analyze large databases (Big Data).

His research group has been focusing on genomic selection in cattle, pigs, poultry and fish. In addition, Lourenço has been involved in the development and implementation of one-step genomic evaluations for several breeding companies and breeders’ associations.

The last ‘ISGA Talks’, the name given to the online meetings held in preparation for the Symposium, entitled ‘Meet the Scientific Committee-ISGA XIV’, was attended by more than 120 participants, including the Scientific Committee that already collaborates with the organization in the realization and preparation of the event’s program.

Major sponsors

The president of the Committee was in charge of the inaugural speech of the meeting, when he took the opportunity to thank the confirmed sponsors of the event that will bring together academics, students, executives, professionals and technicians linked to and interested in the potential that genetics represents for aquaculture production, among them Benchmark Genetics, Hendrix Genetics, Aquagen, IMV Technologies, Center for Aquaculture Technologies, Arquimed-Ilumina, LGC Group and ThermoFisher.

Yáñez took the opportunity to highlight the high interest in ISGA 2022. “We expect it to be a relevant and useful event, both for the scientific community, as well as for the aquaculture industry in general.”

He also thanked the new members of the Scientific Committee, “this group of renowned researchers, for the important role they will have in terms of supporting the organization of the symposium and in defining the scientific program.”

Renowned scientists

As reported at the ‘ISGA Talks’, the ISGA 2022 Scientific Committee will be composed of Elizabeth Boulding, professor in the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada; Supawadee Poompuang, lecturer in the Department of Aquaculture, Faculty of Fisheries, Kasetsart Chatuchak University, Bangkok, Thailand; and Dean Jerry, professor of aquaculture at James Cook University and director of the ARC Research Centre for Enhancing Tropical Aquaculture through Genetic Solutions and the Tropical Futures Institute at James Cook University, Queensland, Australia.

Other members are Diogo Teruo Hashimoto, researcher at the Aquaculture Center of the State University of Sao Paulo, Brazil; Peng Xu, lecturer at the School of Ocean and Earth Sciences, Xiamen University, Xiang’an District, China; Paulino Martinez, professor and researcher at the Department of Genetics at the University of Santiago de Compostela, Lugo, Spain; Delphine Lallias, researcher at the National Institute for Agrifood and Environmental Research (INRAE) in Paris, France, and current EPICOOL project coordinator; and Anna Wargelius, from the Breeding and Development Research Group at the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research (IMR) in Bergen, Norway.

Latest industry research

During the meeting, Shogo Tsuruta of the University of Georgia, who was in charge of the central presentation of ISGA TALKS and a specialist in quantitative animal genetics with extensive experience in the analysis of phenotypic data and genealogical and genomic information to improve animal and aquaculture production, took the floor.

The meeting continued with the contribution of Roberto Neira, professor at the University of Chile, specialist in animal genetics and genetic improvement, and Poompuang, who thanked for the invitation and explained that his research is mainly focused on genetic improvement in species of interest for aquaculture in Thailand, such as tilapia, and more recently snook, venturing into genetic prediction.

In his turn to speak, Teruo Hashimoto reported that he is currently working on models for native South American species, such as pacu and tambaqui, and on the search for genomic applications for greater disease resistance.

Paulino Martínez stressed the importance of the current statistical and methodological tools that can be applied to genomic prediction, emphasizing the role of artificial intelligence and its future impact, while Lallias explained that his current studies revolve around genomic selection for the adaptation of rainbow trout to higher temperatures, in the context of climate change, as well as optimization and cost reduction for genomic selection.


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