Major achievements in BIOQUAL

Physiology and genetics of seafood quality traits

Major achievements in 2004

The first milestone in the project BIOQUAL has been reached concerning the establishment of a method to measure the levels of the hormone ghrelin in the blood of rainbow trout. Ghrelin is a newly-discovered hormone, which is thought to be produced in the stomach and ‘communicate’ information about intake of food to the brain. It is believed that knowledge about ghrelin is important in order to understand how fish regulate their growth and ‘fattiness’. The methodology will now be exploited in feeding trials to increase understanding about the control of growth and energy balance. The project is also discovering genetic variation in lysyl oxidase, the gene responsible for post-translational modification of collagen and in growth factors. Several key transcription factors that can be used as molecular markers of myogenic progenitor cells have been characterised. Such molecular analysis will help explain the biological basis of variation in muscle texture and product quality whilst providing the foundation for novel high throughput methods of broodstock selection. Further, the project is studying water-soluble feed components which may have potential health-promoting effects and be relevant for good product taste. The content of 'new' potential health-promoting compounds has been screened in more than 30 feed ingredients and a database based on the analyses will soon be available.

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The first BIOQUAL project meeting, Brussels, January 20-21, 2004 18-2-2004

The project meeting was by all accounts a very constructive start to exciting and challenging long-term collaborative research efforts within the BIOQUAL partnership. Each partner introduced and highlighted their project-specific areas of expertise, and elaborated on how various lines of research would contribute to the short-term and long-term BIOQUAL goals. This was then integrated into a discussion on the seven major blocks of work envisaged.


Projectleader BIOQUAL

Prof. Björn Thrandur Björnsson, PhD

UGOT, Sweden