"The winner's innovation of the Novus Global Aquaculture Innovation Award - a biotechnology application to produce all-male populations of the giant freshwater prawn, Macrobrachium rosenbergii, through temporal RNA interference -- is a game changer, resulting in increased productivity and profitability for existing growers and perhaps enticing new growers to join the fray."

Dr. Amir Sagi, a professor at Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, presented his winning innovation at GAA’s GOAL 2013 conference in Paris, France. For more details see www.gaalliance.org/newsroom/weighingInNews.php


Crustacean models are employed in our laboratory for the study of genes and gene products related to processes of sexual differentiation and skeletal bio-mineralization. In particular, we study the endocrine regulation by steroids and insulin-like androgenic gland factors of sexual differentiation, gonad maturation, growth, molt and the related processes of calcium mobilization and bio-mineralization.

Control of the above events will enable the development of biotechnological tools for crop improvement via monosex culturing, soft shell-based products as well as for human food additives and drugs.

In the media:

Scientists Try New Tactic Against Schistosomiasis
Researcher Creates Transsexual Prawns To Get Bigger Crustaceans
Convergent Evolution: Team of BGU and Max Planck Researchers Discover Crayfish Teeth Covered with Enamel
Innovative Gene Silencing Biotechnology developed at BGU to advance Vietnamese Aquaculture