Areas of Research

Aquaculture Biotechnology; Fatty Acid Biotechnology

As department chairman in the last few years, time has been spent nurturing and advancing the department’s award winning research programs in the areas of molecular biosciences and bioengineering given limitations in available resources, its outreach activities (via winning business competitions), and its strong, dynamic and growing instructional programs, both undergraduate and graduate. The morale maintained within the department is considered important as well.

Earlier scholarly work led to formulation of marine shrimp and marine finfish feeds that were not only well considered but also held dominant commercial positions as well. There was a focus on the nutritional as well as palatability aspects of feeds. Live feeds for baby marine fish focused on their fatty acids and led to greater stress resistance for these animals. The omega-3 fatty acid DHA (22:6n-3) was found to be critically important. Work was done with freshwater ornamental fish and ornamental fish coloration with carotenoids as well.

Other aspects of our work with fatty acids led to the development of the Hawaiian oils industry. Kukui nut oil products have made it into the cosmetics industry and macadamia nut oils have made it into the cosmetics as well as the food oil industries.

Recent Publications

Grey, M., Forster, I., Giesen, A., Ako, H. and Dominy, W. 2008. Validation of a Feeding Stimulant Bioassay Using Fish Hydrolysates for the Pacific White Shrimp. J. World Aquaculture Society, in press

de Olivera Cesar, J.R., Zhao, B., Malecha, S., Ako, H., and Yang, Jinseng, 2006. Morphological and biochemical changes in the muscle of the marine shrimp Litopenaeus vannamei during the molt cycle. Aquaculture 261:688-694.

Tamaru, C.S., Ako, H. and Tamaru, C.-T. C., 2006. Control of the Apple Snail, Pomacea canaliculata in Hawai‘i: Challenge or Opportunity. Pages 459-473 in Global advances in ecology and management of golden apple snails. Ravindra C. Joshi and Leocadio S. Sebastian, editors. Neuva Ecija:Philippine Rice Research Institute, 2006.

Tamaru, C.S., Tamaru, C. C.-T., Fitzgerald Jr., W. J., Ako, H., and Sato, V.T., 2005. Advances in the culture of striped mullet. Pages 439-456 in Anita Kelly and Jeffrey Silverstein, editors, Aquaculture in the 21st Century. American Fisheries Society.

Ako, H., Shimizu, E., de Lemos, K., Asano, L., and Tamaru, C., 2005. Behavior limitations of high density fish growout. World Aquaculture 36:25-29, 67.

Ako, H., Kong, N., and Brown, A., 2005. Fatty acid profiles of kukui nut oils over time and from different sources. Industrial Crops and Products 22:169-174.

Tamaru, C.S., L. Pang., H. Ako. 2004. Ornamental fish feeds - Part 1. Effect of different maturation diets on the spawning of armored catfish, Corydoras aeneus. International Aquafeed. 7(4):33-35.

Asano, L., Ako, H., Shimizu, E., and Tamaru, C.S., 2003. Limited water exchange production systems for freshwater ornamental fish. Aquaculture Research 34:937-941.

Tamaru, C.S., Ako, H., Sato, V.T., and Weidenbach, R.P., 2003. Advances in the culture of rotifers for use in rearing marine ornamental fish. Pages 265-276. In J.C. Cato and C.L. Brown, editors, Marine Ornamental Species, Collection, Culture & Conservation. Iowa State Press, Ames, Iowa.

Chan, H.T. Jr., Ako, H., Niino-Duponte, R.Y., Carpenter, J.R., and Jang, E.B. 2000. Composition of Mediterranean fruit fly third instar larvae (Diptera:Tephrititdae) and diet: Nutrient balance studies on amino acids, minerals, and nutrient composition in fresh and spent mass rearing diets. Pages 567-576 in Keng-Hong Tan, editor, Area-wide control of fruit flies and other insect pests, International Atomic Energy Agency, Pulau Pinang, Malasia.

Ako, H., Tamaru, C.S., Asano, L., Yuen, B., and Yamamoto, M. 2000. Achieving natural coloration in fish under culture. Page 1-4 in C.C.-T. Tamaru, C.S. Tamaru, J.P. McVey, and K. Ikuta, editors. Spawning and maturation of aquatic species, UJNR Technical Report No. 28. University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Tamaru, C.S. and Ako, H. 2000. Using commercial feeds for the culture of freshwater ornamental fishes in Hawaii. 2000. Page 109-120 in C.C.-T. Tamaru, C.S. Tamaru, J.P. McVey, and K. Ikuta, editors. Spawning and maturation of aquatic species, UJNR Technical Report No. 28. University of Hawaii Sea Grant College Program, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Ako, H. and Tamaru, C.S., 1999. Are feeds for food fish practical for aquarium fish? International Aquafeed 2:30-36. [published at the invitation of the editor]

Fukumoto, G.K., Kim, Y.S., Kim, K.H., and Ako, H., 1999. Carcass and meat quality characteristics of forage-based beef. Pages 12-21 in J.R. Whitacre, N.F. Haard, C.F. Shoemaker, and R.P. Singh, editors Food for health in the Pacific rim, Food & Nutrition Press, Inc., Trumbull, Connecticut.

Tamaru, C.S., Ako, H., Sato, V., and Alexander, S., 1998. Rotifer update. International Aquafeed 4:17-20. [published at the invitation of the editor]

Qin, J.G., Fast, A.W., and Ako, H., 1998. Growth performance of diploid and triploid Chinese catfish Clarias fuscus. Aquaculture, 166:247-258.

Tamaru, C.S., Ako, H. and Paguirigan, R., 1997. Essential fatty acid profiles of maturation feeds used in freshwater ornamental fish culture. Hydrobiologia, 358:265-268.

Lim, C., Ako, H., Brown, C.L., and Hahn, K., 1997. Growth response and fatty acid composition of juvenile Penaeus vannamei fed different sources of dietary lipid. Aquaculture, 151:143-153.


Ako, H. and Shimeld, L. Study quide to accompany Biochemistry by Mathews and van Holde, 2nd edition, Benjamin Cummings, Menlo Park, CA, 1996, 420 pages