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Molluscan Health

Dr Frederico Batista is leading the work of the Molluscan Health Theme within the OIE Collaborating Centre for Emerging Aquatic Animal Disease and the International Centre of Excellence for Aquatic Animal Health at Cefas. He has over 15 years’ experience in the diagnosis of molluscan diseases, with a particular interest in the identification and characterisation of novel and emerging pathogens of bivalves (e.g. ostreid herpesvirus 1) using histopathology and molecular biology tools. Frederico has a special interest in viral diseases of mollusc and One Health approach. He was a member of the Portuguese National Reference Laboratory (NRL) for Molluscan Diseases between 2009 and 2014. More recently, he worked at the European Union Reference Laboratory for monitoring bacteriological and viral contamination of bivalve molluscs as well as in the UK NRL for foodborne viruses. Frederico has over 30 peer reviewed publications on aspects of diseases (e.g. marteiliosis, bonamiosis, perkinsiosis, vibriosis and viral infections), immunology, physiology and aquaculture of bivalve molluscs and other invertebrates. 

Contact Frederico for issues relating to molluscan health: frederico.batista@cefas.co.uk

Dr Irene Cano Cejas is an experienced Microbiologist and Immunologist researcher, with more than 19 years of postdoc research in the field of fish and shellfish diseases. Irene is leading numerous studies in collaboration with various national research teams and several European groups specialized in the study of viral pathogenicity, emerging diseases and immunotherapy to control disease outbreak in aquaculture systems. Current R&D projects comprise state of the art studies on pathogen and host transcriptome, understanding viral virulence, developing in vitro models to study host immune response to pathogen, and investigating rickettsia-like infection on aquatic species.  Irene has over 30 peer reviewed publications on all aspects of disease in fish and shellfish.

Dr David Bass is the Microbial Diversity Theme Lead within the International Centre of Excellence for Aquatic Animal Health at Cefas. He is a Principal Scientist at Cefas, leading work in molecular biology and parasitology, and is also Topic Lead in the Sustainable Aquaculture Futures centre run by Exeter University and Cefas. He was until recently also Research Leader in microbial evolution and ecology at The Natural History Museum in London. Along with his prominent track record in micro-eukaryote systematics, he leads research in diverse areas: molecular phylogenetics, molecular diversity studies (including environmental DNA (eDNA) sequencing and analysis), molecular taxonomy and diagnostics, molecular early warning indicators for disease risk, emerging diseases, and antimicrobial resistance, microbiomes, and pathobiomes of animals and plants (including macroalgae). David is Past President of both the International Society for Protistology (ISoP) and Protistology-UK and an invited taxonomic expert on UniEuk (a new global taxonomic standard data resource for microbial eukaryotes; and on Advisory Council), and EukRef. He has published many papers on parasites infecting molluscs, including haplosporidians, mikrocytids, paramyxids, and microsporidia, and has described many new parasitic taxa. He has published c. 100 peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Mr John Paul Bignell is a Pathologist within the OIE Collaborating Centre for Emerging Aquatic Animal Disease and the Pathology Technical Lead within the International Centre of Excellence for Aquatic Animal Health at Cefas. With over 15 years of histopathology experience, John is the Pathology Technical skills support investigating OIE listed bivalve mollusc diseases, the provision of advice pertaining to bivalve mollusc diseases and the study of the biological effects of contaminants in the marine environment. He has also contributed to the development and application of stress-based biomarkers in bivalve molluscs in biological effects monitoring programmes. John leads the online development of the Cefas Registry of Aquatic Pathology into an aquatic animal digital pathology resource and has over 25 peer reviewed publications concerning aquatic animal diseases and biological effects monitoring.