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Cleaner Fish Health: Causes of loss and preventive measures

The Norwegian Seafood Research Fund - FHF

Project leader
Eirik Biering

There is a great need for knowledge about the health of the cleaning fish used in salmon cages, both in terms of actual numbers of survival after stocking in cages and the causes of disease and mortality. Such an overview will make it easier to implement preventive measures, both at the technological farming area, but also in terms of vaccine development. Necessary tools in vaccine development are reproducible challenge models of disease that can be used to test the efficacy of vaccines.

This project aims to generate knowledge about cleaning fish health that will have practical application both in the short and long term. The project will systematically identify causes of mortality among cleaner fish, collect and characterize pathogenic isolates and develop challenge models for these to use in vaccine development. One will also create publications that summarize what is known about cleaniner fish health today. The project will increase awareness of cleaner fish health among fish health personnel and salmon farmers who use cleaern fish. This knowledge will make it possible to implement preventive measures.

The project will also prepare the ground for vaccine development by identifying relevant infectious agents and develop challenge models that can be used in vaccine development. The project will improve the participating institutions expertise in the area and thus also the quality of the counseling services they provide.


  • University of Bergen
  • Institute of Marine Research

Duration: 30.09.2012 - 30.12.2014


Colquhoun Duncan

Senior Researcher