SBIR Phase I: Molecular diagnostics and biological control of disease in farmed channel catfish

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0912233
Agency Tracking Number: 0912233
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: BC
Solicitation Number: NSF 08-548
Small Business Information
DUNS: 019710669
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Thomas Schoenfeld
 (608) 831-9011
Business Contact
 Thomas Schoenfeld
Title: MS
Phone: (608) 831-9011
Research Institution
This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5). This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project is aimed at developing an effective, inexpensive, safe means of controlling infectious diseases among farmed catfish. An integrated system of detection and control is targeted at Edwardsiella ictaluri, the most costly pathogen among farmed catfish. Detection is based on rapid, simple tests for pathogen genes. Control is based on naturally occurring viruses and bacteria. Together these technologies comprise an integrated system for rapidly and inexpensively detecting and treating catfish more safely, inexpensively and specifically. This approach is generally applicable to pathogens affecting a wide range of farmed fish. As commercial wild harvest of most fish species is proving unsustainable, farmed fish are increasingly significant as a food source and an important industry, often in underdeveloped parts of US and the rest of the world. A major impediment to developing this industry is infectious disease due to unnaturally high densities of fish that cause losses of up to half of the fish worth billions of dollars worldwide. There is currently no satisfactory means of controlling these outbreaks. Alternatives including antibiotics, vaccines, chemicals or controlled feeding are either expensive, harmful to human and environmental health and/or detrimental to yields. The immediate focus of this proposal, Enteric Septicemia of Catfish due to Edwardsiella ictaluri, addresses the $20-30M in losses and promises to improve the viability of an important source of income to the rural southeastern US. Longer term, this approach will be applied to other fish species throughout the US and the world.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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