Institut für Fisch- und Wildtiergesundheit

Epigenetik & Evolution

Is immunity heritable?

How do early life conditions and parental experiences impact disease resistance?

Own epidemiological and genetic data suggest that early life experiences, and potentially even parental experiences, play an essential role in the immune reaction of the salmonid flagship species brown trout Salmo trutta to the myxozoan parasite Tetracapsuloides bryosalmonae. We use the brown trout - Tetracapsuloides bryosalmonae model to study the impact of rearing environment on disease severity, from the molecular to the macroscopic level, across two generations.

The project aims to

  • characterize of brown trout cellular immunity using FACS and single cell RNA sequencing (scRNA seq).
  • describe the cellular immune reaction of brown trout to Tetracapsuloides bryosalmonae using infection experiments, qPCR, histology, FACS and scRNA seq.
  • determine the impact of rearing environment on the immune response.
  • explore immune priming effects in unexposed offspring generations.

This project is supported by a project grant from SNSF awarded to I. Adrian-Kalchhauser.

Project team

Heike Schmidt-Posthaus, Helena Saura Martinez, James Ord (moved to Uni Helsinki), Dragan Stajic, Irene Adrian-Kalchhauser


Stephanie Talker (IVI, Uni Bern), Monica Hongroe Solbakken (Oslo University)