Principal Investigator:
Jonathan Mark Wilson

The main objective of the Molecular Physiology Research Group is to understand the molecular physiological mechanisms of adaptation in fishes across evolutionary and life history time scales. This research has applications in conservation physiology and improving conditions in finfish aquaculture.

Specific objectives and research lines:

  • Elucidating the molecular mechanisms of ion and acid-base regulation in fishes. This has relevance to species conservation and in evaluating the impacts of ocean acidification.
  • Establishing a link between exposure to high environmental ammonia and increased disease susceptibility in fishes. This has relevance to both aquaculture and environmental monitoring.
  • Determining the importance of acid-peptic digestion in the evolution of the stomach in vertebrates using fish models. This has relevance to aquaculture.

Our current research addresses the Horizon 2020 societal challenges (1) Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research and the bioeconomy and (2) Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials.

Publications Highlights

Gonçalves A.F., Neves J.V., Coimbra J., Rodrigues P., Vijayan M.M., Wilson J.M. 2017. Cortisol mediates the environmental ammonia associated suppression of the immune response in zebrafish. General and Comparative Endocrinology.

Gonçalves O., Castro L.F.C., Smolka A.J., Fontainhas A., Wilson J.M. 2016. The gastric phenotype in the Cypriniform loaches: A case of reinvention? PLoS ONE 11(10): e0163696.

Ferreira-Martins, D., McCormick, S.D., Campos, A., Osório, H., Coimbra, J., Castro, L.F.C. and Wilson, J.M. 2016. A cytosolic carbonic anhydrase molecular switch occurs in the gills of metamorphic sea lamprey. Scientific Reports 6: 33954.

Ferreira-Martins D., Coimbra J., Antunes J., Wilson J.M. 2016. Effects of salinity on upstream migrating, spawning sea lamprey, Petromyzon marinus. Conservation Physiology 4(1):COV63.

Castro L.F.C., Gonçalves O.M., Mazan S., Tay B., Venkatesh B., Wilson J.M. 2014. Recurrent gene loss correlates with the evolution of stomach phenotypes in gnathostome history. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 281 (1775): 20132669.