The grants are sponsored by French Pacific Fund allocated to Dr. Mireille Chinain (ILM-Tahiti), Dr. Susana Piovano (USP-Fiji) and Dr. David Lecchini (CRIOBE-Moorea) (SPP 55-1-2017)

Description
Fish products are the nutritional basis of many island populations globally. Ciguatera Fish Poisoning (CFP) results from the consumption of fish that have accumulated ciguatoxins (CTXs) produced by benthic dinoflagellates in the genera Gambierdiscus and Fukuyoa. Over the past several decades, the frequency and distribution of CFP have increased significantly in the Indo-Pacific region, a likely consequence of numerous environmental changes in coastal and lagoon ecosystems. Despite increased knowledge about the impacts of climatic cycles and biogeography of Gambierdiscus, ciguatera events are still very difficult to predict. Likewise, the uptake, tissue distribution, accumulation and toxicity of CTXs in fish are still poorly understood. The existence of numerous structural variants (congeners) of the toxin, and the lack of a duly validated reference test for CTXs both constitute a major obstacle in the sustainable exploitation of fish resources. In addition to the direct effects of ciguatera on public health and the economy of nations highly dependent on fish consumption, the fear of ciguatera often leads to reduced fishing in many indigenous Pacific populations, which reminds us that the impact of ciguatera risk must also be examined from sociological and societal perspectives and not only from a public health standpoint. Recently, several initiatives to implement a more efficient management of CFP risk globally have emerged within the scientific community.

Applicants for this grant are invited to present their research within this context, “Ciguatera fish poisoning in the Indo-Pacific region: incidence, toxin dynamics, impacts on socio-ecosystems, and risk management”. The presentation will be done in the session H5 about ciguatera fish poisoning.

Contact
Dr. Mireille Chinain, ILM-Tahiti, email: mchinain@ilm.pf
Dr. Susanna Piovano, UPF-Fiji, email: susanna.piovano@usp.ac.fj

Rules
Please send (in one pdf document) 1/ the title and an abstract (250 words) of your presentation, 2/ your CV (1 or 2 pages), and 3/ trip itinerary and an estimation of the cost of your flight.

Who should apply
All staff (researchers, lecturers, post-doctorates, doctorates and Master students) of Universities, Environmental/Fisheries departments, and NGOs from South Pacific Islands.