Scientific summary

Aquaculture is the fastest growing agricultural industry providing healthy food for mankind. In addition, culture of high valued marine fish, crustacean and molluscan species is financially attractive. However diseases at the larval stages constitute a major bottleneck and cause economic losses to the industry. Vaccines are not effective at the larval stages and antibiotics are used for disease control, although there are serious concerns about development of bacterial antibiotic resistance and its transfer to human pathogenic bacteria. There is a strong need for development of non-antibiotic disease control strategies especially at the larval stages.