[MARMAM] New Publication: Virtopsy as a Revolutionary Tool for Cetacean Stranding Programs: Implementation and Management

Dr. KOT Brian Chin Wing briankot at cityu.edu.hk
Thu Nov 12 04:41:25 PST 2020

Dear MARMAM Readers,

On behalf of the Aquatic Animal Virtopsy Lab (https://www.facebook.com/aquanimallab) in City University of Hong Kong, my colleagues and I are pleased to share our new paper, representing a milestone on our project management, namely “Virtopsy as a Revolutionary Tool for Cetacean Stranding Programs: Implementation and Management”, published in Frontiers in Marine Science.

Tsui HCL, Kot BCW, Chung TYT and Chan DKP (2020) Virtopsy as a Revolutionary Tool for Cetacean Stranding Programs: Implementation and Management.
Front. Mar. Sci. 7:542015. https://doi.org/10.3389/fmars.2020.542015

Being the first team worldwide to conduct virtopsy routinely on stranded cetaceans since March 2014, we consolidated our 6-year experiences on how this revolutionary tool has been implemented, and how the management of brand-new cetacean stranding program works, using the successful case in HK waters as an example.

On top of conventional necropsy, virtopsy (postmortem computed tomography and postmortem magnetic resonance imaging) has been integrated into the Cetacean Stranding Response Programme in Hong Kong since March 2014. To date, 177 out of 240 local stranded cetaceans have been examined by virtopsy. This integration has modernised the characterisation and documentation of cetacean biological health and profiles, and causes of death. During this 6-year period, critical pitfalls regarding logistics, carcass recovery, handling, and preservation have been identified. A strategic management scheme is crucial for the successful incorporation of virtopsy into this pioneer programme. This study explains the workflow of the Cetacean Virtopsy Stranding Response Programme in Hong Kong waters. Difficulties encountered are highlighted and practical solutions to address management issues are proposed to consolidate the stranding response network.

I would like to extend my gratitude to readers of our work, as well as editors and reviewers for their contributions to this finished version. Happy reading ☺

Warm regards,
Brian Kot

Ph.D. in Diagnostic Imaging, B.Sc. (Hons) in Radiography, Cert. (RPC), Cert. (Virtopsy)

Visiting Assistant Professor
Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences
Jockey Club College of Veterinary Medicine and Life Sciences
City University of Hong Kong
Research Fellow
State Key Laboratory of Marine Pollution
City University of Hong Kong

E: briankot at cityu.edu.hk<mailto:briankot at cityu.edu.hk>, briankot at yahoo.co.uk<mailto:briankot at yahoo.co.uk>
W: https://www.cityu.edu.hk/jcc/staff/dr-brian-kot-chin-wing

Aquatic Animal Virtopsy Lab
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