Induction of increased growth in Nile tilapia using genome editing
Research project 13
Project researcher: Dr. Matan Golan

Ectopic over-expression of growth hormone (GH) is the most effective way to boost fish growth. This strategy has proven effective in tilapia and salmon, in which transgenic fish exhibit up to a 13-fold increase in growth rates and a 20-25% improvement in feed conversion ratio. However, these growth-improved strains were generated using transgenic technology in which foreign genes were randomly introduced into the animal’s genome, raising significant public concerns regarding using these fish in commercial aquaculture.

Here we propose genome editing to induce growth in tilapia without generating transgenic fish. For this purpose, we propose using CRISPR/Cas9 technology to increase the protein production rate in the fish and thereby increase its growth rate.

מחקר מס' 13 - ד"ר מתן גולן
Staining fish pituitary cells expressing GFP (green) in GH cells (magenta) following transgenesis with a construct in which the tilapia GH promoter drives GFP. Anti-GH antibody is a kind gift from Prof. Berta Levavi-Sivan.

Project researcher:

ד"ר מתן גולן

We are interested in understanding how hormonal systems function to regulate the physiology of fishes.

Research partner:

Yaara Colombus

Dr. Yaara Colombus-Shenkar
Lab manager

Email: yshenkar@gmail.com

Institution:
Agricultural Research Organization, Volcani Institute.