Genomic tool for SRS-resistance in coho

The SNP chip has been created to enable more precise selection of Coho broodstock The SNP chip has been created to enable more precise selection of Coho broodstock
Industry Database

A Chilean aquaculture collaboration claims to have developed the first genomic tool for assaying whole-genome variation in coho salmon.

The new tool developed by AquaGen Chile, Blue Genomics Chile and FAVET-INBIOGEN University of Chile, is a SNP-chip based on whole-genome sequencing of animals from Aquagen’s coho breeding population.

Dr Thomas Moen, research director, AquaGen Norway, said: “We made good use of our earlier experiences from Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout when we made this SNP-chip. SNP-chips have led to entirely new possibilities in selective breeding and also to ground-breaking insights into salmonid biology.”

By creating a de novo genome reference for the coho salmon and utilising the recently published genome references for Atlantic salmon and rainbow trout, researchers were able to define a set of genetic markers (SNPs) that capture the variation within the coho genome in a more precise manner.

This results in more precise selection of broodstock with certain characteristics. For instance, existing data and new experiments can now be analysed for the identification of less susceptible fish to SRS.

The SNP chip will serve as a tool for future studies of the coho salmon, strengthening the ability of the coho to cope with diseases and other challenges presented by aquaculture, while also increasing general knowledge of the species biology. 

The development of the chip has been called a significant step forward for the Chilean salmon aquaculture, crucial for genetic improvement of production traits such as growth rate and SRS resistance.

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