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Novartis Research Chair In Fish Health Appointed


CANADA - The Atlantic Veterinary College at the University of Prince Edward Island (UPEI) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr Mark Fast to the role of Novartis Research Chair in Fish Health.

Dr Fast's expertise in aquatic diseases and immunology will contribute greatly to advancing the science of fish health and aquaculture on both a regional and global scale.

As a faculty member with the Atlantic Veterinary College's Pathology and Microbiology department, Dr Fast will focus on in-depth research and education in the area of fish health-a unique and quickly emerging field of study in veterinary medicine. Dr Fast, who was previously an Assistant Professor in Aquatic Diseases and Immunology at Stony Brook University's renowned School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences in New York, joined the Atlantic Veterinary College in February 2010.

"We are very pleased to have Dr Fast join our outstanding research, education and service team," says Dr Donald L. Reynolds, Dean of the Atlantic Veterinary College.

"Dr Fast's expertise in aquatic diseases and immunology will contribute greatly to advancing the science of fish health and aquaculture on both a regional and global scale. His experience and specialized skills are a tremendous asset and complement to the Atlantic Veterinary College's existing strengths in aquatic species health."

Dr Fast's role as the Novartis Research Chair in Fish Health will build on the Atlantic Veterinary College's globally recognised aquatic species health expertise which include an OIE Reference Laboratory for ISA, the AVC Centre for Aquatic Health Sciences and the AVC Lobster Science Centre. The addition of the Novartis Research Chair in Fish Health enables the Atlantic Veterinary College to move closer to its goal of becoming the world's leading academic-based aquatics institution.

"The Atlantic Veterinary College is grateful to Novartis Animal Health for its support of this prestigious research chair," says Dr Reynolds. "We look forward to continuing our long-standing partnership with Novartis to advance the basic science of fish diseases and health management in an effort to support our regional industries and improve fish health on a global scale."

Dr Fast holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree from Dalhousie University, a Master of Science degree from the Atlantic Veterinary College at UPEI, a PhD from Dalhousie University, and was a post-doctoral researcher at the National Research Council Institute for Marine Biology's Fish Health Laboratory. Dr. Fast is the recipient of various awards and funding grants, has an active publication record, and has contributed to the training of future researchers as a graduate student supervisor.

"I am extremely excited and honoured to pursue this unique opportunity to work with Novartis and the Atlantic Veterinary College," says Dr Fast.

"This is an ideal nexus for research in the field of animal health. Specifically, with respect to global economical and ecological issues, we are at an important juncture in the way we use and manage our aquatic resources, be they fisheries or aquaculture related. I foresee our research being at the leading edge of providing the knowledge base necessary for informed decision making in a number of these areas."