Molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenicity and virulence of aquatic pathogens, particularly bacteria that infect aquaculture stocks. A deeper understanding of these microbes will allow for the introduction of new and improved treatment and control strategies.
Development of alternative invertebrate hosts to replace fish in studies of microbial infections. The introduction of new models is reducing reliance on vertebrates for understanding disease in aquaculture.
Characterisation of host defence mechanisms against invading microbes. A more thorough understanding of innate immune processes and functions will aid efforts in aquaculture to reduce losses caused by microbial diseases.
Discovery and development of novel and alternative antimicrobial compounds, particularly those that act against drug-resistant human pathogens or can be applied in aquaculture. This research may help to combat problems resulting from microbial antibiotic resistance.