The goal of the project is to characterize the Epitheliocystis in aquaculture fish species believed to be caused by pathogenic intracellular bacteria. The major presence of Epitheliocystis in aquaculture fish has yet to be identified and not much research has been conducted on the identification of the organism as well as disease transmission within the aquaculture production industry. The purpose of the project is to understand disease transmission, mechanism of the disease process, and host range to prevent this disease in aquaculture by utilizing fish models of infection and identification of etiologic agents of Epitheliocystis in the specific fish species picked for analysis.
The purpose of my online research over the summer was to help establish and find past protocols and research that would help create an approved animal usage protocol for the Culture and Characterization of Epitheliocystis Agents in the aquaculture fish species being studied, as well as any possible immunological and toxicology information that could help with background research.
The internship helped me to understand and learn to look for background research to accomplish project goals and the needed understanding of research. One of the many struggles was finding valuable research articles, past protocols, and valid sources that would contribute to the project's overall goal. Having a focus on finding protocols that would help to establish an NIH approved animal usage protocol for the lab narrowed possible findings even when certain information I found may not have been overall useful for the project itself but to my overall understanding of the project instead. The expansion of my knowledge and experience in research will advance my skills in research and lead to academic development in my independent studies throughout college and into the career field.