The future at the microscope … Development and implementation of new technologies and protocols in the study of fish reproductive ecology

You will know firsthand what the future is to be. Our researchers will present their most promising research lines which aim to not only improve quality of life, but to create jobs, wealth, and social and economic development.

Today we present a project coordinated from CITIUS to research the development and implementation of new technologies in the study of reproductive ecology in fisheries.

Project: Development and implementation of new technologies and protocols in the study of fish reproductive ecology

Research group: Eva Cernadas García & Manuel Fernández Delgado

Institution: CITIUS (USC)

Principal Investigator: Eva Garcia Cernadas

The project

When managing marine resources, and in order to ensure their sustainable exploitation, conservation of the potential reproductive stock is fundamental. This indicator, known as PRS, is estimated in relation to calculating fertility, an essential parameter. However, it is rarely used due to analysis complexity and to the high cost of the process. This project aims to build an automatic system based on computer visions from histological images of fish gonads.

The results

Our objective is to design and implement software that allows to calculate fertility from the automatic analysis of histological images of fish gonads. Specifically, the software recognises the edges of mature oocytes in the image, and ranks from two perspectives: oocytes with and without the presence of core and oocytes from different maturity stages. It also calculates histogram diameters. All the information thatt is needed and calculated is stored in a database, which allows the review of calculations and teamwork.

Phase in which the project stands

Funding for the project has been accomplished. The software is being used at the Marine Research Institute (CSIC-Vigo), and will be used in the “Encoro do Con” Hydrobiology station (EHEC), University of Santiago de Compostela. Currently, free software is being prepared and distributed.

The intention is that this tool is distributed as free software. For this reason, no patent is not.


The GOVOCITOS software has been developed between Citius (USC) and the LIA group (UVigo), in collaboration with the Marine Research Institute (CSIC).

This project has been conducted with funding from the Regional Government of Galicia.

For more information:

Name: Eva Garcia Cernadas

Phone: 881 816459

Email: eva.cernadas @

Position: Researcher

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