Project “PRAZIQUANTEL” final results

The project “PRAZIQUANTEL” produced new knowledge on the potential dietary use of the anthelmintic praziquantel as an alternative to formalin baths in gilthead seabream

The final results of the research project PRAZIQUANTEL were presented on the 21th of November 2023 at the Royal Olympic Hotel in Athens. The project was co-funded by Greece and the European Union under the Fisheries and Maritime Operational Program 2014-2020 and was coordinated by the Laboratory of Pathobiology & Pharmacokinetics of the Institute of Marine Biology, Biotechnology and Aquaculture (IMBBC) of HCMR in collaboration with the Department of Ichthyology & Aquatic Environment of the University of Thessaly and the AVRAMAR AQUACULTURE SA.

The PRAZIQUANTEL project evaluated the properties of the anthelmintic praziquantel (PZQ) against monogenean infections including trials on the pharmacokinetic profile and the degree of absorption in the circulatory system and gills of gilthead seabream, on the antiparasitic efficacy against S. chrysophrii infections in gilthead seabream at production level and on the potential toxicity in the treated fish and in  selected non-target marine organisms.

The results mainly showed that PZQ is readily bioavailable in gilthead seabream, while the dosing of 150 mg/kg fish for 3 days is the preferable therapeutic scheme, resulting in higher tissue levels. Moreover, dietary PZQ treatments can considerably control S. chrysophrii infections in caged gilthead seabream, while the toxicity of PZQ in the treated animal and in non-target marine fauna is rather negligible. Thus, therapeutic schemes including dietary PZQ are safe to the fish and the environment and are highly recommended as an alternative or in combination to formalin baths against important monogenean infections in farmed fish.

The IMBBC is one of the three institutes of the HCMR, with headquarters in Heraklion, Crete and facilities in Anavyssos, Attica and Souda, Crete. With a staff of 111 people and 24 regular researchers, it undertakes research in marine biodiversity, genetics and genomics, and aquaculture.

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