discussion / eDNA & Genomics  / 25 January 2016

eDNA Future applications

eDNA has already been applied to a variety on environments and species. Nevertheless, there is always room for advancement and improvements.

What do you see as the next steps that need to be taken to make eDNA even more effective and broadly applicable as a tool? What are the challanges that need to be overcome?

Please use this thread to share your thoughts and ideas.


Trying to revitalize this conversation. 

I'm new to eDNA so I can't talk about sequencing and analyzing methods but a great step would be to automatize collection of aquatic samples. One of the challenges of this tool in aquatic environments is to avoid contaminations during collection, filtration and storage of filters. An all-in-one device that could pump, filter and store filters automatically and safely would be a fantastic thing (though unlikely to be developped) and a great help in collaborating with citizen scientists to collect eDNA. It could be used in neighborhoods to monitor freshwater systems, or by sailors to collect marine eDNA along cruise transects. 


Hello all,

I just came across this PhD offer (https://www.sfecologie.org/offre/these-cifre-en-biomonitoring-par-capteurs-a-adne/ in French) about developping the use of passive eDNA sensors for an easier, more easily automated monitoring of freshwater habitats. The authors note that, while several new techniques have been developped to use eDNA in those habitats, complex methodologies still hinder its widespread use. Objectives of the project are to 1) test the use of eDNA sensors in lab and field settings; 2) develop new metabarcoding processes; and 3) perform a biocomputing analysis of results and apply results. 

It sounds like a very useful project for the field of eDNA!


Hi Harold,

Yes, the idea would be very similar to the OSMO sampler in Lauro et al. I ooked for more information on subsequent developments but couldn't find anything. I hope their project kept going. 

Teague's idea is a bit more complicated and is more for targeted applications, with the need for an operator.