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A plug and play PHOTOnics based bioSENSing platform for salmon pathogen detection

Project description

Photonics based bio-sensing platform for pathogen detection in fish aquacultures

Zero hunger is the leading Sustainable Development Goal of the UN’s 2030 Agenda to eliminate hunger and malnutrition and ensure access to safe, healthy and sufficient food. While aquaculture is one of the most efficient food sources, it relies on controlled aquatic environments that must be kept in healthy conditions. As a consequence, the fish living environment must be monitored continuously with advanced biosensing. The EU-funded PHOTO-SENS project will connect pioneering biosensor technology and scaling-up procedures with aquaculture expertise to establish an aquaculture pathogen hub and a working diagnostic platform monitoring salmon pathogens. It will also review the scalable production of the technology.


The UN's 2030 Agenda, adopted by world leaders in 2015, represents the new global sustainable development framework and sets 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Foremost is the Zero Hunger SDG, which seeks to end hunger and malnutrition, and ensure access to safe, nutritious, and sufficient food. One of the most productive and efficient sources remains aquaculture, which is the process of rearing, breeding, and harvesting of aquatic species, in controlled aquatic environments, like the oceans, lakes, rivers, ponds, streams and purpose built Recirculating Aquaculture systems (RAS). According to the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), aquaculture is growing faster than any other major food production sector, with 50% of all sea food consumed is obtained by aquaculture.

We are currently standing at a critical juncture to maintain healthy aquaculture conditions. To do so we need to continuously monitor the living environments of the fish and apply cutting edge bio-sensing to safeguard these fish farms and therefore our food security. The current consortium brings together the latest in biosensor technology, scaling up procedures, and aquaculture expertise, to safeguard our food security in the present and future years. By becoming an aquaculture pathogen testing hub and bringing to market a working diagnostic platform monitoring salmon pathogens, the consortium [Surfix (NL), Phix (NL), TunaTech (DE), CSEM (CH), and LRE Medical (DE)] aims to provide a long-term solution to ensure our collective food security.

This project will build upon the BIOCDx project (ID: 732309) which successfully delivered a working prototype, however, due to lack of scalability, the overall costs of the biosensor remained very high (~€500/chip). Thus, the principal aim of PHOTO–SENS is to investigate scalable production of this technology (to reduce the costs 10 fold; €50/chip), and validation with an end–user in the aquaculture market.


Net EU contribution
€ 563 630,63
Rue jaquet droz 1
2000 Neuchatel

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Schweiz/Suisse/Svizzera Espace Mittelland Neuchâtel
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (4)