Goals and research lines

Nutrigenomics and Fish Growth Endocrinology
Institute of Aquaculture Torre de la Sal, IATS-CSIC
Department of Biology, Culture and Pathology of Marine Species


The group was created in 1990 with the incorporation of Dr. Jaume Pérez Sánchez to IATS. The research activity, funded by national and European projects, is mainly focused in gilthead sea bream but also addresses comparative studies in other marine and freshwater species of aquaculture interest (sea bass, sea bream, turbot, sole, trout). The ultimate goal is to develop new bio-technological tools that enable sustainable development of aquaculture and the generation of high quality fish from the design and validation of new feeds and feeding strategies based on the use of alternative raw materials free of bio-contaminants and of high nutritional value
2003-2013 Statistics
103 SCI




Research topics

  • Design and validation of new aquafeeds "Combined replacement of fish meal and fish oil by vegetable raw materials"
  • Nutritional and endocrine regulation of growth
  • Control and improvement of the quality and product safety of the final product "bio-contaminants, fatty acid profiles, electronic nose"
  • Oxidative stress and bio-energetics
  • Functional genomics: identification and characterization of new genes associated with traits of interest (growth, lipid metabolism, oxidative, diseases resistance)



Research activity milestones

  • Expression and purification of recombinant forms of hormones of the GH/PRL family in gilthead sea bream, European sea bass and sole
  • Development and validation of radioimmunoassays and ELISAs for determination of circulating and pituitary levels of growth factors (GH, IGFs)
  • Characterization of promotor regions in genes related to traits of interest
  • New aquafeeds based on vegetable raw materials
  • Predictive models for fish fatty acid composition on the basis of the nutritional background (www.nutrigroup-iats.org/aquafat)
  • Gilthead sea bream transcriptome database with more than 18,000 Swissprot unique descriptions (www.nutrigroup-iats.org/seabreamdb)
  • Sea bass intestinal transcriptome database with more than 13,000 Swissprot unique descriptions(www.nutrigroup-iats.org/seabassdb)
  • Sea bream and sea bass microarrays and PCR-arrays for the study of processes and metabolic pathways related to traits of interest (growth, resistance to stress and infectious processes, long chain omega-3 fatty acids retention)
  • Identification and validation of new biomarkers of diagnostic and preditive value for growth, intestinal health, immune response,  lipid and oxidative metabolic dysfunctions, and chronic stress