Why mucosal health?
The mucosal surfaces (i.e., skin, gills, gut) provide the aquatic organisms the indispensable first line of defense against the constant threats present in the immediate environment. Despite having various physiological functions, all mucosal tissues share a commonality in their structures at the microanatomic level, most notably the presence of an organised epithelial surface with supporting stromal tissues or lamina propria, vasculature, musculature, and resident immune cells.
The mucosal surfaces are often considered “the biological sensors” of aquatic organisms. They can provide significant information about the physiological status of the host and the conditions of the rearing environment. In the last 15 years, intense research has been dedicated to understand the physiology and immunology of mucosal surfaces. This has been pivotal in elevating mucosal health as a notable theme in aquaculture research. The burgeoning number of published papers on mucosal health supports the high regard of the scientific community to this field. The results from these studies provide the strong link between mucosal health and organismal health, resulting in the development of several strategies targeting the mucosal surfaces for improved health and welfare.
MHA2019 – a unique and timely platform
Despite the unequivocal importance and global interest on mucosal health in aquaculture, there is no dedicated platform for this theme. The 1st International Symposium on Mucosal Health in Aquaculture (MHA2019) will be the first of its kind and will initiate a unique global network dedicated to advance mucosal health research in aquaculture. MHA2019 aims to provide a platform to present and discuss the state-of-the-art of mucosal health research in various farmed aquatic species. This will in turn stimulate new research frontiers and opportunities, thus cementing the relevance of mucosal health in promoting more sustainable farming practices.
MHA2019 is expected to gather emerging (e.g., students, early career scholars) and established (e.g., senior scientists, academicians) researchers around the world who are interested in various aspects of mucosal health and who are in the forefront of their fields. The symposium also actively encourages the participation of the members of the industry, especially from the farming and feed production sectors.
- Mucosal structures and functions
- Mucosal health and nutrition
- Mucosal microbiome
- Mucosal health and the changing environment