Group work on 23 May 2005 at the meeting "Harmonisation of the Care and Use of Fish in Research"
Suggestions for the discussion:
Start with a summary of the situation today. Then discuss if this situation is satisfying. Make a list of possible improvements.
- What criteria do YOU use when YOU select fish for YOUR research?
- Is it possible to obtain pathogen free fish?
- How do YOU avoid introduction of pathogens into YOUR research facility?
- How do YOU make sure that the fish that YOU use in YOUR research is "healthy" at the start of your research and stay "healthy" during your research?
- How do YOU monitor the welfare of the fish?
- How do YOU report the health status of the fish that YOU use in YOUR research?
Notes from group A:
- Reluctance (or ignorance?) to use FELASA guidelines: "bughunting"
- We tend to rely on clinical observations (swim right side up, visible signs of damage)...
- Rather than using mammalian guidelines,
we need species-specific or group-specific guidelines
- Quarantine and use of known sources is important,
since we lack well-defined fish strains
- "Pathogen-free", "germ-free" are foreign terms that need to be defined and discussed more in the fish environment
- The level/type of monitoring should probably be linked to the use to which the fish will be put
- Or do we wait with screening until something goes (visibly) wrong?!
- Aseptic techniques, can surgery be sterile?
- What about postoperative infections?
- Can the effects of surgery be distinguished from the effects of the organisms?
- We need to consider the microbiological quality of feed, water, enrichment substrates (remember water is a good medium for transmission of organisms) - worse in recirculating systems
- Better handling, respect for the mucous layer - more research needed
- Healthy fish can develop disease if the environment is unfavourable (transport stress, sub-optimal environmental factors)
e.g. Sweden: numbers of research fish increased from 150,000 to 9.5 million fish in one year (test fishing)
Notes from group B
We do a lot of health monitoring already
- We use only clinically healthy fish
- Veterinary inspections
- Health certificates and other documentations
- Quarantine with clinical controls
- Test for the pathogens that are causing problems
- Limitations on the detections methods available
- Limitation on economy
- Depending on Aims of study
- SPF = Specific pathogen free (IPNV, ISAV)
- ONE or several pathogen (FELASA list)
Avoid pathogens into your research
- Clinical examination
- Testing for pathogens
- Prophylactic treatment (may influence on the research)
- Antibiotics, formalin, vaccination,
- Live feed
- With or without pathogens
- Building structure (colour coding of rooms and tanks)
- Foot baths
- Competent personal
- Birds and other not invited guests
- "Sharing water is sharing pathogens"
- Fish in the same water are ONE system
- Reverse osmosis
- Reduce number of bacteria
- Difficult with salt water
- Avoid water sources with salmonids
- Tap water, decolorize
- Deep water intake in the sea
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