Ph.D in Zebrafish Welfare

Intelligent Monitoring of Health in a Model Organism: Detection and Alleviation of Stress and Pain in Zebrafish
AIM: This project seeks to apply an AI monitoring tool to gauge welfare in one of the main fish models, the zebrafish and produce a robust system in partnership with industry.
1. Develop the utility of the tool in assessing welfare changes in an important laboratory model, the zebrafish, when fish are exposed to acute husbandry procedures, environmental change, and potentially painful procedures compared with normal behaviour.
2. Correlate physiological function and stress indicators with behavioural responses to understand if behaviour is indicative of reduced welfare. Alongside the behavioural changes we will measure primary (plasma cortisol, changes in brain gene expression) and secondary stress indicators (lactate, glucose).
3. To inform pain management strategies, we will test a range of drugs with analgesic properties to determine the most effective drug and dose as well as using pharmacokinetics to determine the persistence of these drugs in the zebrafish tissues
4. Testing and development of the AI tool in real-life situations in laboratories in Newcastle, Liverpool and Gothenburg in collaboration with our industry partner.
Informal enquiries may be made to lead supervisor Dr Matt Leach -

Project Supervisors:
Dr Jack Thomson and Prof. Joe Spencer, University of Liverpool
Dr Lynne U. Sneddon, University of Gothenburg

To apply:

Salary: UK Stipend

Closing date: 22/01/2021

Further information can be found here.