United Kingdom

Reproduction and Genetics Group
Institute of Aquaculture
University of Stirling

Prof. Herve Migaud
Phone : +44 1786467886

Prof. Brendan McAndrew
Phone : +44 1786461884

University of Stirling
Institute of Aquaculture
FK9 4LA Stirling (Scotland)

Group Description
The Reproduction and Genetics group of the Institute of aquaculture at the University of Stirling (http://www.aqua.stir.ac.uk/) is composed of 11 academic staff, 4 technicians and currently 4 postdocs and 17 PhD students. The major focus of the Genetics and Reproduction Group is on the management of broodstock and the production of fish as a controllable and sustainable resource. This involves studies of the control of maturation and puberty, the development and management of programmes of selective breeding and sterility, the mechanisms involved in sex differentiation and gender control, and basic research on important traits and genes. All of these areas combine the use of the newer techniques of molecular biology and genomics with whole animal studies of physiology and function, in particular where they are relevant to commercial culture. A major thrust in recent years has been the application of this expertise to questions raised by the ever-expanding interests in new aquaculture species and species diversification, particularly with regards to marine fish. The group also makes a major contribution to the research of the Nutrition and Disease Groups, especially through its genomics and molecular genetics activities. Main species of interest are both established temperate species such as salmonids (Atlantic salmon, rainbow and brown trout), gadoids (cod and haddock), flatfish (halibut and turbot), and tropical species such as Nile tilapia, African catfish ; and new emerging/candidate species including wrasse (Europe), snook and pompano (Gulf of Mexico), arapaima (Brazil). The group has access to extensive fish research facilities (including freshwater, marine, challenge, temperate and tropical units) and commercial operations (including a brown trout hatchery, a salmon smolt unit and a wrasse hatchery). The group contributes significantly to the teaching activities of the Institute which include Master degrees in Sustainable Aquaculture, Veterinary Sciences and Aquatic Biotechnology as well as undergraduate degrees (BSc Honours in Aquaculture and Marine Biology).

Main lines of Research
– Genetic management, selective breeding and genetic manipulation of Aquaculture Stocks : sterility/triploidy, genomics and molecular Genetics, fully inbred clonal lines and their applications, microarrays, NGS, RAD tagging.
– Sex determination and sex ratio control in commercially important species (mainly tilapia, halibut, wrasse, sea bass).
– Stock management strategies to control reproduction and optimise growth : endocrinology of fish reproduction, light perception and biological efficiency, biological rhythms, clock genes.
– Broodstock management and egg quality of new candidate species :

– AQUAEXCEL project : http://www.aquaexcel.eu
– ARRAINA project : http://arraina.eu/
– Marine Alliance for Science and Technology for Scotland (MASTS) http://www.masts.ac.uk/

Relevant publications

  1. Migaud H., Mandiki R., Gardeur J.N., Kestemont P., Bromage N., Fontaine P., 2003. Influence of photoperiod regimes on the Eurasian perch gonadogenesis, spawning and egg and larvae quality. Fish Physiology and Biochemistry 28, 395-397.
  2. Fontaine P., Migaud H., Mandiki R.,Gardeur J.N., Kestemont P., Fostier A., 2003. Involvement of sex steroids in final stages of oogenesis in Eurasian perch, Perca fluviatilis. Fish Physiology and Biochemistry 28, 331-332.
  3. Migaud H., Wang N., Gardeur J.N., Fontaine P., 2005. Influence of photoperiod on reproductive performances in Eurasian perch Perca fluviatilis. Aquaculture 252, 385-393.
  4. Davie A., Porter M., Bromage N., & Migaud H. (2007). The role of seasonally altering photoperiod in regulating physiology in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). Part I. Sexual maturation.  Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 64 (1), 84-97.
  5. Migaud H., Davie A., Taylor J.F.T., 2010. Current knowledge on the photoneuroendocrine regulation of reproduction in temperate fish species. Journal of Fish Biology 76, 27-68.
  6. Villamizar, N., Migaud H., Davie, A., Treasurer J., Blanco-Vives, B. and Sánchez-Vázquez, F.J. 2011. Effects of light during early larval development of some aquacultured teleosts: A review. Special Issue of Aquaculture 315, 86-94.
  7. Davie A., Sanchez J.A., Vera L.M, Sanchez-Vazquez J., H. Migaud, 2011. Ontogeny of clock mechanisms during embryogenesis in Rainbow trout (Onchorhynkiss mykiss). Chronobiology International 28(3), 177-186.
  8. Taylor, J.F., Preston, A.C., Guy, D., Hunter, D. and Migaud, H., 2011. Ploidy effects on hatchery survival, deformities, and deformities in Atlantic salmon. Special Issue of Aquaculture 315, 61-68.
  9. Migaud H., Ismail R., Cowan M., Davie A., 2012. Kisspeptin and seasonal control of reproduction in mature European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). General and Comparative Endocrinology 179, 384-399.
  10. Migaud, H., Bell G., Cabrita E., Davie A., Bobe J., Herráez M.P., McAndrew B., Carrillo M., 2013. Gamete quality and broodstock management in temperate finfish. Reviews in Aquaculture 5, S194-S223.
  11. Rhody N.R., Neidig C.L., Main K.L., Migaud Herve and Grier H. J., 2013 Assessing reproductive condition in captive and wild common snook stocks: A comparison between the wet mount technique and histological preparations. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 142 (4), 979-988.
  12. Palaiokostas C., Bekaert M., Davie A., Cowan M., Oral M.,Taggart J.B., Gharbi K., McAndrew B.J., Penman D.J., Migaud H., 2013. Mapping the sex determination locus in the Atlantic halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) using RAD sequencing. BMC Genomics 14, 566.
  13. Preston A., Taylor J., Craig B., Bozzolla P., Penman D., Migaud H., 2013. Optimisation of triploidy induction in brown trout (Salmo trutta L.). Aquaculture 141, 160-166. (2.009)
  14. Rhody N.R., Puchulutegui C., TaggartJ., Main K.L., Migaud H. Parental contribution and spawning performance in captive common snook Centropomus undecimalis broodstock. Aquaculture.


Cryobiology Research Group
School of Applied Sciences
Bournemouth University, UK

Professor Tiantian Zhang
+44 (0)1202 965721

Dorset House, Talbot Campus
Fern Barrow, Poole
Dorset, BH12 5BB, UK

Group description
Professor Tiantian Zhang was a Professor of Cryobiology and the Director of LIRANS Institute of Research in the Applied Natural Sciences at University of Bedfordshire until 2011. She was also the leader of the Cryobiology Research Group. The Cryobiology Research Group at LIRANS is a world leader in the area of fish gamete cryopreservation. The Research carried out by the group contributed significantly to the understanding of the problems associated with fish oocyte and embryo cryopreservation. Progress in determining the limiting factors in cryopreservation of fish oocytes and embryos together with successful development of cryopreservation protocols for other fish cells resulted in the Group’s cryobiology research, along with other research activities in the Institute, being recognised in the last UK Research Assessment Exercise as at international and world leading levels. LIRANS was also the co-ordinating centre for fish cryobanks of the global ‘Frozen Ark’ project aimed at cryo-banking of DNA and cells of fish species.

Professor Tiantian Zhang joined Bournemouth University as the Head of the Graduate School in 2012 and established a Cryobiology Research Group at Bournemouth University. The research carried out have been in the areas of the cryopreservation of reproductive cells, tissues and embryos of aquatic species and studies on the effect of cryopreservation on genome and cellular metabolism of reproductive cells including stem cells. The Group currently has 1 professor, 1 senior researcher and two PhD students.

Relevant publications
1. M Salavati, F Ghafari, T Zhang and A. Fouladi-Nashta (2012). Effects of oxygen concentration on in vitro maturation of canine oocytes in a chemically defined serum-free medium. Reproduction, 144(5), 547-556.
2. T. Zampolla , DM Rawson and T. Zhang (2012). The use of Fetal bovine serum for cryopreservation of stage III zebrafish (Danio rerio) ovarian follicles. Cryoletters, 33(6), 435-442.
3. L Wang, G Zhou, W Shi, J Shi, X Tian, C Gao, L Zhang, S Zhu, T Zhang, S Zeng, G Liu (2012). First live offspring born in superovulated sika deer (Cervus nippon) after embryo vitrification. Theriogenology, 78(7), 1627-1832.
4. E. Spikings, T. Zampolla, D. Rawson, Y. Wang, T. Zhang (2012). Effect of methanol on mitochondrial organisation in zebrafish (Danio rerio) ovarian follicles. Theriogenology, 77(1), 28-38.
5. T. Zampolla, E.Spikings, S. Srirangarajah, D.M. Rawson and T. Zhang (2011). Impact of cryoprotectants and cryopreservation on metabolic activity and cytoskeleton proteins of zebrafish (Danio rerio) ovarian fragments. Cryoletters, 32(6), 525-536.
6. C. Nathanailides, T. Chanzaropoulos, A. Barbouti, C. Perdikaris and T. Zhang (2011). DNA fragmentation, linear velocity and fertilisation ability of reactivated cryopreserved goldfish sperm using different cryoprotectants. Journal of Biotechnology, 10, 514-520.
7. K. Desai, E. Spikings, T. Zhang (2011). Effect of chilling on sox2, sox3 and sox19a gene expression in zebrafish (danio rerio) embryos. Cryobiology, 63(2), 96-103.
8. T. Zampolla, E. Spikings, D. Rawson and T. Zhang (2011). Cytoskeleton proteins F-actin and tubulin distribution and interaction with mitochondria in the granulosa cells surrounding stage III zebrafish (Danio rerio) oocytes. Theriogenology, 76, 1110-1119.
9. C. Lin, T. Zhang, F.W. Kuo, S. Tsai (2011). Studies on oocytes chilling sensitivity of two gorgonian coral species (Junceella juncea and Junceella fragilis). Cryoletters, 32 (2), 141-147.
10. S. Anil, F. Ghafari, T. Zampolla, D. M. Rawson and T. Zhang (2011). Studies on cryoprotectant toxicity to zebrafish (Danio rerio) ovarian tissue fragments. Cryoletters, 32 (1) 40-50.