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Mark D. Fast  

Mark D. Fast
Adjunct Assistant Professor

Ph.D., 2005, Dalhousie University


Aquatic diseases and Immunology

Visit Dr Fast's web page


Research Interests

My research focuses on the interactions between fish hosts and the pathogens they come into contact with. I use a variety of tools, including proteomic, molecular, and immunological assays to elucidate these host-parasite relationships. Specifically, my research investigates immunological and physiological processes of the host/parasite and how these are altered following exposure to one another. Furthermore, I am interested on the effect environmental parameters have on these interactions.

My previous work has concentrated on Atlantic and Pacific salmonids and their interactions with the parasitic copepods (i.e.Lepeophtheirus salmonis). However, more recently, I have been working on bacterial pathogens (Aeromonas salmonicida and Moritella viscosa). I am currently interested in focusing on marine species within Long Island Sound and surrounding areas.

I have been involved in the drafting of protocols and guidelines for sea lice research in the Broughton Archipelago ( and continue to collaborate on investigations of juvenile pink and chum salmon susceptibility to the salmon louse.


Fast MD, Johnson SC, Eddy TD, Pinto D, Ross NW. In press. Lepeophtheirus salmonis secretory/excretory products and their effects on salmonid immune gene regulation. Parasite Immunol.

Fast MD, Johnson SC, Jones S. In press. Differential expression of the proinflammatory cytokines IL-1β-1, TNFα-1 and IL-8 in vaccinated pink (Ocorhynchus gorbuscha) and chum (Oncorhynchus keta) salmon juveniles. Fish Shellfish Immunol.

Jones SRM, Fast MD, Johnson SC. In press. Differential susceptibility and the responses of pink (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha) and chum (O. keta) salmon juveniles to infection with Lepeophtheirus salmonis. Dis Aquat Org.

Fast MD, Ross NW, Muise, DM, Johnson SC. 2006. Differential gene expression in Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar, infected with Lepeophtheirus salmonis (Copepoda: Caligidae). J Aquat An Health 18:116-127.

Fast MD, Muise, DM, Easy RE, Ross NW, Johnson SC. 2006. The effects of successive Lepeophtheirus salmonis infections on the immunological status of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar). Fish Shellfish Immunol 21: 228-241.

Fast MD, Cembella AD, Ross NW. 2006. In vitro transformation of paralytic shellfish toxins in the clams Mya arenaria and Protothaca staminea. Harmful Algae 5: 79-90.

Fast MD, Ross NW, Johnson SC. 2005. Prostaglandin E2 modulation of gene expression in an Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) macrophage-like cell line (SHK-1). Dev Comp Immunol 29: 951-963.

Fast MD, Ross NW, Craft CA, Locke SJ, MacKinnon SL, Johnson SC. 2004. Lepeophtheirus salmonis: Characterization of prostaglandin E2 in secretory products of the salmon louse by RP-HPLC and Mass Spectrometry. Exp Parasitol 107: 5-13.

Johnson, SC and Fast MD. Interactions between sea lice and their hosts. In “Host-parasite interactions”. Wiegertjes GF and Flik G (eds), BIOS Scientific Publishers Ltd. 2004, 131-161.

Fast MD, Burka JF, Johnson SC, Ross NW. 2003. Enzymes released from Lepeophtheirus salmonis in response to mucus from different salmonids. J Parasitol 89: 7-13.

Fast MD, Sims DE, Burka JF, Mustafa A, Ross NW. 2002. Skin morphology and humoral non-specific defence parameters of mucus and plasma in rainbow trout coho and Atlantic salmon. Comp Biochem Phys A 132: 645-657.

Fast MD, Ross NW, Mustafa A, Sims DE, Johnson SC, Conboy GA, Speare DJ, Johnson G, Burka JF. 2002. Susceptibility of rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, Atlantic salmon Salmo salar and coho salmon Oncorhynchus kisutch to experimental infection with sea lice Lepeophtheirus salmonis. Dis Aquat Org 52: 57-68.


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