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Congratulations to David Willer on his publication in the Journal of the Royal Society Open Science

last modified Dec 08, 2017 04:00 PM

Congratulations to David Willer for publishing the paper Microencapsulated diets to improve bivalve shellfish aquaculture in the Royal Society Open Science.


Aquaculture is the fastest growing food sector and feeds over 3 billion people. Bivalve shellfish aquaculture makes up 25% of global aquaculture production and is worth annually US$19 billion, but continued growth is currently limited by suboptimal diets and limited tools for disease control. New advances in microencapsulation technology could provide an effective way to overcome these biological limitations. This study demonstrated that a new formulation of microencapsulated diet known as BioBullets could be ingested by a commercially farmed bivalve; the blue mussel Mytilus edulis. Microparticles could be captured by mussels with similar efficiency to natural foods. Microparticles too large for ingestion were rejected in pseudofaeces. Microparticles were successfully ingested and broken down by the gut. Further work is needed to assess the impact of BioBullets diets on bivalve growth. There is now an exciting opportunity to tailor the composition of microencapsulated diets for specific applications to improve production output and efficiency in the commercial bivalve shellfish industry.

Read the full paper.


David is a 2016 cohort PhD student in the BBSRC DTP Programme. He is currently researching development of microencapsulated diets for shellfish, echinoderms and fish fry in the lab of Dr David Aldridge in the Department of Zoology at the University of Cambridge. As part of the BBSRC DTP Programme David completed rotation projects in Zoology and in the Department of Plant Sciences with Dr Andrew Tanentzap.