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Our Aquaculture business delivers contract research services to support the development of fish health products for the aquaculture sector.

We work with pharmaceutical companies and other organisations to conduct efficacy and safety studies in a range of aquaculture species.

All our regulatory work is conducted to the principles of Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) or VICH-GCP (Veterinary Good Clinical Practice), and the data generated is used to support the registration of a wide range of aquaculture products, including vaccines, anti-infectives, anti-parasitics, feed additives and novel feed materials. We also carry out early-stage proof of concept studies.

The species we focus on are salmon, trout, cleaner-fish and cold-water marine species. Some studies on warm water fish and shellfish are also possible.  In addition we can conduct feed attractant and palatability studies in shrimp.

Get in touch to learn more and to discuss your study requirements:

Watch our video introducing our Aquaculture contract research


We have extensive experience of studies with a range of fish pathogens and have a portfolio of infectious disease models for use in efficacy studies, e.g. salmon Lice (Lepeophtheirus salmonis).

Contract studies for clients generate data supporting the registration of new veterinary products; we also carry out post-marketing studies. Our work includes design and planning of studies, the in-life phase, the analytical phase and production of the final report.

We have access to a range of aquaculture research facilities to conduct both marine and freshwater studies. The facilities provide high levels of environmental control and are fully compliant with regulatory standards for animal welfare, biosecurity and environmental protection.

We are supported by the Moredun Research Institute’s aquaculture scientists who provide consultancy and specialist services as required.


We have access to both freshwater and seawater aquaculture facilities to undertake and complete studies to the satisfaction of the appropriate regulatory authorities. The variety of different tank sizes enables us to conduct a range of different study types in line with client requirements.

Facility 1 – GLP compliant for small-scale pharmacology and environmental safety testing. Warm water facilities for fish and shrimp.

Facility 2 – larger scale biocontainment facility with full control of temperature and salinity for safety, pharmacology, and efficacy studies. 8 x 1.5m and 24 x 1m tanks.

Facility 3 – commercial scale, freshwater salmon and trout unit for fish performance studies and testing of equipment and devices. 28 x 2m tanks and 36 x 1m tanks

Facility 4 – seawater facility with 6 x 4.5m tanks (24m3) and 12 x 1.5m tanks

Efficacy Studies

We offer a range of infectious disease models for use in client efficacy studies. In addition to our range of validated disease models, new models and protocols can be developed to complement the needs of our clients. Short- and long-term studies (e.g. duration of immunity), involving a range of veterinary medicinal products such as vaccines, antiparasitics, antimicrobials, and immunostimulants can be carried out.

We are experienced in working with a broad range of fish pathogens and fish species


  • sea lice
  • amoebic gill disease

Bacterial and viral pathogens:

  • Aeromonas spp.
  • Listonella/Vibrio spp.
  • Flavobacterium psychrophilum
  • infectious pancreatic necrosis virus (IPNV)
  • salmonid alphavirus (SAV)
  • piscine myocarditis virus (PMCV).

Our laboratories are fully equipped to run in vitro efficacy screening tests as required prior to in vivo studies.

Our in vivo testing facilities allow us to carry out studies with pathogens up to Containment level 3 and with Genetically Modified Organisms up to Containment level 2.

Fish Performance Studies

We work with clients to carry out fish performance studies to evaluate a range of product types such as new and improved formulated feeds, feed ingredients, feed additives and fish handling equipment.

We can monitor a range of parameters including fish survival, feed intake, fish growth, feed conversion ratios, body composition, protein retention, smoltification status, immune function and welfare indices.  For shrimp feed we can run feed attractant and palatability studies

Laboratory Services

We offer a range of diagnostic assays to support our client studies as required including virus isolation, antibody ELISA, immune function tests, real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), stress markers, haematology and clinical chemistry.

Fish pathology and analytical chemistry can be delivered through our external partners.

Safety and Pharmacology Studies

We conduct GLP safety and tolerance studies in compliance with relevant international guidelines for pharmaceuticals, biologicals and feed additives.

Through partnerships we can also provide biochemistry, histopathology and haematology support to GLP standards.

Our studies include:

  • Preliminary safety screening
  • Target animal safety
  • Pharmacological studies
  • Pharmacokinetics
  • Metabolism
  • Residue depletion
  • Environmental safety

Contact us:

Tel: +44 (0)131 445 6206


Related Links:

European Medicines Agency

VICH Quality Guidelines

European Pharmacopeia (EP)

Our experts

Bill Roy


Kim Thompson

(BSc, PhD)

Guillermo Bardera


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