Fish Update Briefing, Friday, June 16

Fish Update Briefing, Friday, June 16

FISH OILS CAN HELP ‘PREVENT DIABETES’

PREGNANT or breastfeeding women who eat a fish rich diet can protect their babies from diabetes, a new study found. The omega 3 found in oily fish such as salmon, mackerel and sardines protects children at risk of type 1 diabetes from developing the disease. The Finnish scientists, who carried out the study, said the findings could lead to new recommendations that pregnant women eat more omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and breastfeed for longer. Type 1 diabetes is incurable and occurs when the pancreas doesn’t produce any insulin.

FISH COULD HOLD DNA KEY

THE classic New Zealand version of fish and chips may hold the key to the origins of a form of DNA memory critical to human development, according to the University of Otego. Elephant sharks, which are commonly served in fish and chips shops around New Zealand, are a very distant relative of humans, with similar DNA memory systems. For a long time, researchers have wondered how the DNA memory system that belongs to humans has only been found in animals with a backbone, often called vertebrates, such as mammals, amphibians and fish, and how it has evolved. ‘This memory is made up of tiny chemical tags called methylamine, which are used to tell a cell what its job is and make sure it stays dedicated to it,’ research leader Dr Tim Hoer, of the Department of Anatomy, says.

TATTOO FISH PUZZLES SCIENTISTS

A FISH caught with tattoo markers has left observers baffled. The 2m-long blue marlin was snapped with an intricate design imprinted on its side after it was pulled from the sea by Filipino fisherman Cosmo Tango. Now internet users are offering a range of explanations for how the 24kg fish came to acquire its inking, with some even claiming it could be an alien. One suggested an unknown quantity was behind the markings – which resemble a coat of arms. They wrote: ‘There are many things in our world that we do not know about, especially under the sea. Remember, the sea is greater than land.’

NORWAY SEA LICE LEVELS DECLINE

THE prevalence of sea lice at Norwegian salmon and trout farming sites declined slightly in the January to May season compared to the same period of 2016, Norway’s Food Safety Authority reported. ‘The increased use of mechanical measures to remove lice is harming fish, however, resulting in higher mortality,’ it added. Sea lice prevalence rates are key to determining which regions of Norway will be allowed to expand salmon farming under recently introduced regulations.

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