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PROJECT: 2016/805

Polymicrobial involvement in OsHV-1 outbreaks

WHY WAS THE RESEARCH UNDERTAKEN?

Recent research highlights the polymicrobial role in oyster diseases, and this project aims to untangle the complexity of oyster diseases and improve the understanding of the role of environmental conditions, biogeography and seasonality in structuring the oyster microbiome.

WHAT ARE THE MAJOR FINDINGS/OUTCOMES SO FAR?

  • Known pathogenic bacteria (such as those from Vibrio and Photobacterium) are negatively associated with POMS resistance

  • Bacteria belonging to the Cupriavidus and Psychrillyobacter are associated with POMS resistance

  • Variability between oyster microbiomes – previous research has linked genetics to microbial community structure

  • Microbial community may be playing a role in disease resistance

HOW IMPORTANT WILL THESE FINDINGS BE IMPORTANT TO INDUSTRY?

  • A new framework for defining oyster disease susceptibility, delivering an enhanced capacity to select oyster populations/genetic lines to maximize survival during disease outbreaks

  • Modifications to the timing and location of Pacific Oyster cultivation practices, leading to reduced occurrence of disease outbreaks and significant enhancement of production

  • Capacity to detect and potentially manage the occurrence of microorganisms involved in polymicrobial infections of Pacific Oysters, helping to reduce disease occurrence and spreading

Please see video below for the research summary.

PROJECT INVESTIGATOR

Justin is an ARC Future Fellow and the leader of the Climate Change Cluster (C3) Ocean Microbes and Healthy Oceans research program at the University Technology of Sydney. His research interests incorporate aquatic microbial ecology and biological oceanography, and his research team tackles the important questions of who are the key microbial populations in different ocean ecosystems, and what they are doing. To answer these questions he examines the ecology of microbes across a range of marine environments (tropical coral reefs to Antarctica) and a continuum of spatiotemporal scales. At the ocean-basin scale Justin investigates how large-scale oceanographic processes (e.g. boundary currents and mesoscale eddies) influence microbial community dynamics and functionality. 

UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY SYDNEY

Justin Seymour

Email: Justin.Seymour@uts.edu.au                                                                  Phone: (02) 9514 1776

Professor, Climate Change Cluster