Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory, Singapore.
Title: ASIAN SEABASS THE NEXT BIG FISH-STATUS OF ITS BREEDING PROGRAM
Gen Hua Yue is a Director (of Strategic Research Programs) and Senior Principal Investigator at the Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory, Singapore. He is an adjunct professor at several universities in China and Singapore. He got his PhD at the University Hohenheim, Germany in 1999. The research focus of his group is to use genomic approaches to improve the productivity and sustainability of economically important fish (e.g. Asian seabass and marine tilapia). He has published over 130 scientific papers in peer-reviewed international journals. He has been on the editorial boards of several international journals (e.g. Scientific Reports, BMC Genomics, Aquaculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries, Gene, Frontiers in Livestock Genomics, Plos One) and has evaluated over 200 scientific papers for 58 international journals. He has reviewed research proposals from the EU, USA, China, Ireand, Kuwait, New Zealand and Singapore since 2007.
The Asian seabass (Lates calcarifer) is an important marine foodfish and has been cultured for food in Southeast Asia since the 1980s. The aquaculture industry of this fish is growing at a rapid rate. In Singapore, with the strong support from Singapore government, we started a breeding program for Asian seabass to improve its growth performance, disease resistance and meat quality in 2004. We have developed a large number of genomic resources to facilitate the breeding program, such as whole genome sequence, DNA markers, a molecular parentage system, linkage maps, BAC libraries, transcriptomes, and a genotyping by sequencing platform based on NEXTseq 500. After three generations of family-based selection in mass crosses with molecular parentage analysis, we have increased the growth of Asian seabass by over 70% as compared to the control. Using progeny test and GWAS, we have identified brooders resistant to the big belly disease, nodavirus and iridovirus and established one line of Asian seabass resistant to these diseases. Using QTL mapping and GWAS, we identified DNA markers associated with growth and meat quality traits. We established one line for quick growth and another line for high content of omega-3s in flesh. Hybrids generated by crossing between the three lines are being tested in farms in Singapore and other countries. The growth and disease-resistance performance, as well as the content of omega-3 are very promising. In this presentation. I will summarize our traditional and molecular breeding program, and the achievements of this breeding program, as well as the future directions of research.