Cryopreservation of Golden Shiner (Notemigonus crysoleucas) Embryos for Aquaculture

2020-2022 Biennial Request for Proposal Project

Image credit: ATP-Bio

The goal of this project is to develop cryopreservation and laser-warming technology to demonstrate a survival rate greater than 3% for golden shiner (fish) embryos. This project is part of the University of Minnesota Engineering Research Center for Advanced Technologies for the Preservation of Biological Systems (ATP-Bio). The ATP-Bio project teams seeks to develop technology that can stop biological time through temperature control in order to biopreserve or cryopreserve biological systems.

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Why do this?

Cryopreservation of fish embryos could improve the productivity of the Minnesota aquaculture industry by enabling farmers to produce a continuous supply of gametes year-round and reduce the cost of broodstock maintenance. For many species such as walleye, cryopreservation could also be an important strategy to ensure against the loss of these species due unexpected disease, reproductive failures, or invasive species. Cryopreservation of fish embryos could also enable preservation of genetic lines for research.

Project description

The two objectives of this project are:

  1. to develop laser-warming enabled cryopreservation technology for Golden Shiner (fish) embryos and
  2. to demonstrate a survival rate of more than 3% at Day 5 after laser warming.

For the first objective, the research project team will develop methods for microinjection of a cryoprotective agent and gold nanoparticles into the fish embryos, followed by the use of pre-cooling cryoprotectant baths. For the second objective, the research team will develop methods to rapidly cool and laser warm embryos.

University of Minnesota project factsheet (August 2020).


Support for this project came from Minnesota Sea Grant's 2020-2022 biennial request for proposal solicitation.


Lead scientist(s)

John Bischof
Distinguished McKnight University Professor
Director, Institute for Engineering in Medicine
Director, NSF Center for Advanced Technologies Preservation of Biological Systems (ATP-Bio)
The Carl and Janet Kuhrmeyer Chair, Mechanical Engineering
Medtronic-Bakken Endowed Chair for Engineering in Medicine

Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Minnesota Twin Cities


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