Genetic structure study of lobster variety earns praise

MUSCAT: An abstract on an Omani lobster species, submitted by Rufaida Dhuhai Al Breiki, a PhD student from the Centre of Excellence in Marine Biotechnology (CEMB), SQU, has earned accolades at the latest edition of the World Aquaculture Society (WAS) Conference, held in Cape Town, South Africa, in June 2017.
WAS conferences is recognized as the premier aquaculture conferences and exhibitions bringing together a wide variety of aquaculturists from the commercial, academic and government sectors. The abstract submitted by Rufaida was titled as “A genetic Structure Study of the Scalloped Spiny Lobster (Panulirus homarus) from Oman”.
Omani people are very attached to the sea where fishing has been an important income source for Omanis. among different fisheries, the scalloped spiny lobster Panulirus homarus has high socioeconomic value for many fishermen from Al Sharqiyah to Al Wusta and Dhofar governorates.
However, a sharp decline in landings (2000 tonnes in the 1980s to only about 416 tonnes in 2015) of this species has been reported over the last three decades. For the successful fishery management of the scalloped spiny lobster, it is vital to understand the population genetic structure.
This study has been conducted to provide necessary genetic knowledge which may contribute to the maintenance of P homarus population in Oman.

Rufaida Dhuhai al Breiki

This study was carried by utiliSing for the first time in this species, genome-wide genetic markers, single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, and it provides novel insights into the genetic structure of P homarus populations across the Omani coast.
Findings of the study suggested that the lobster stock from Al Shuwaymiyah may represent a distinct stock.
Through her oral presentation, Rufaida highlighted the importance and findings of the research that was funded by the Research Council of Oman (TRC), project (ORG/SQU/EBR/13/027) led by Dr Madjid Delghandi, a senior researcher from (CEMB).
The study involved collaboration with research team from James Cook University in Australia, academics, research assistants and students from Sultan Qaboos University and the Marine Science and Fisheries Center from the ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries in Oman.
The abstract submitted by Rufaida has been selected as one of the best three abstracts submitted by international students, and it received student travel award. Subsequently, Rufaida with other two winner students were challenged to present their abstracts in three minutes’ student spotlight competition.
Rufaida won the 1st place in this competition. Also the students had presented later detailed version of about 20 minutes of their research.