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Prosjektnummer: 900588
Status: Avsluttet
Startdato: 01.02.2011
Sluttdato: 31.12.2013

Application of a new vaccine principle to combat infectious salmon anemia (ISA)

Results achieved
Summary of results from the project's final reporting
Infectious salmon anaemia (ISA) is still a serious viral disease for the national and international farmed salmon industry. The devastating ISA disease outbreaks in Chile, but also the situation in Norway, are reminders of the importance of this emerging disease. One of the key areas of success in managing fish health in aquaculture, also limiting the use of antibiotics and chemicals, has been the development of vaccines. The use of fish vaccines has become an established, proven and cost-effective method of controlling infectious diseases. Effective bacterial vaccines are used in commercial aquaculture of species; however the development of effective viral vaccines has proved to be more challenging.

The project team has utilized its knowledge of host-pathogen interactions in fish to explore a targeting vaccine technology (Vaccibody) in fish using Atlantic salmon and ISA as a model. To do so, detailed knowledge on the immune system of the species in question, as well as the pathogen itself, are required. By applying this novel strategy, the project team has investigated whether targeting viral antigen to salmon antigen-presenting cells can lead to the development of an effective vaccine against ISA.

This project has contributed to increase the knowledge of important salmonid immune molecules and demonstrated that targeted vaccines hold promise as a useful principle for developing tailored salmonid vaccines. Furthermore, by developing vaccine constructs and vaccine administration that supports DNA-vaccine delivery and expression in fish, the project has built a foundation to continue to explore this vaccine strategy in fish.

The project has mainly been financed by the Norwegian Research Council (NRC). FHF has contributed with co-financing of the project only. NRC has been responsible for ensuring research quality and for administrative project co-ordination. For further details and publications, see also the project page at NRC (NRC project no.: 206​965​).
Resultatene er nyttige ved at de bidrar til mer kunnskap om nye og mer effektive metoder for vaksinasjon av laks. Samtidig er det utviklet kunnskap som vil være nyttig som del av et beslutningsgrunnlag for mulig godkjenning av DNA-baserte vaksiner.
Aquaculture in general and Atlantic salmon in particular is a very important economical resource to Norwegian industry. In 2009, more than 958 000 tonnes of farmed fish were produced in Norway with an estimated value of NOK 22 billion. 90 per cent of these earnings came from Atlantic salmon (www.ssb.no). As with all animal husbandry, aquaculture is plagued with a wide variety of diseases. Development of fish vaccines against bacterial diseases has been largely successful, while vaccination against viral pathogens continuously represents a major challenge.

Infectious salmon anemia (ISA) is still a serious viral disease for both the national and the international farmed salmon industry. The ongoing devastating ISA disease outbreaks in Chile, is a reminder of the importance of this emerging disease.
To elucidate whether targeting viral antigen to salmon antigen presenting cells can be used to
• dissect salmon immune responses important for protection against viruses
• develop an effective vaccine against ISA
Expected project impact
The project addresses the economical aspect of Atlantic salmon aquaculture by adapting and further developing a new mammalian vaccine principle for use in salmon. This work has the potential to produce cheap and effective vaccines against infectious salmon anemia. In addition, this tool represents a unique opportunity to provide basal knowledge on humoral and cellular responses to viral infection in Atlantic salmon. In this way the project will benefit both industrial interests and the basic knowledge on fish health, virus-fish interactions and Orthomyxo viruses, which all represent important strategic objectives of the applicant institution.
Project design and implementation
In this project it will investigated whether targeting viral antigen to salmonid APCs can be used to dissect the immune mechanisms important for protection against ISAV, and to develop an effective vaccine against the disease.

The project consists of the following work packages (WPs):
WP1. Development of salmon targeting vaccines
Principle investigator
: Siri Mjaaland (Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH) / Norwegian National Veterinary Institute (NVI))
The aim is to construct vaccine candidates targeting salmon APCs and test their functionality and specificity in vitro.

WP2. Experimental trials
Principle investigator: Siri Mjaaland (NIPH/NVI)
The aims is to establish a "proof of principle" for targeting DNA vaccines in fish, using ISAV and Atlantic salmon as a model system.

WP3. Host responses
Principle investigator: Unni Grimholt (University of Oslo)
The aim is to study protective humoral and cellular immune responses after vaccination and challenge of Atlantic salmon.
Dissemination of project results
A summary of the project's final reporting will be presented on FHF's website.