21 August 2018
BMT is organising a seminar on an innovative biological monitoring tool, environmental DNA (eDNA), with the purpose of sharing information with the industry, regulators and the wider scientific community. eDNA has monitoring applications for biosecurity, environmental impact assessment, conservation and the detection of threatened species.
BMT has invited three speakers, experienced in eDNA and its applications. The seminar will include an overview of the technology, real life case studies, regulators’ viewpoint of the eDNA tool and a panel discussion.
Australia’s marine environment is unique and has significant value for our economy and social/cultural identity. eDNA may be able to play an important part in our effort to understand and manage our marine environment. Through this seminar, oil and gas operators, port owners, regulators and researchers will have the opportunity to learn, exchange ideas and share their experiences on the use of eDNA in environmental management and biosecurity.
Environmental DNA (eDNA) are trace amounts of DNA obtained from environmental substrates (such as water or sediment), rather than directly from a biological source. This preserved genetic material provides a tool to monitor the composition of biological communities at a given location.
When combined with next generation DNA sequencing technologies, eDNA provides a wealth of information for studies of biodiversity, threatened species, biosecurity, pests/diseases, food webs and dietary analysis.
Kindly RSVP by 30th August 2018
via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
or call +61 (08) 6163 4900
Professor Mike Bunce, Head of TrEnD Lab
Professor Mike Bunce is the head of the TrEnD Laboratory at Curtin University. Professor Bunce completed his undergraduate degree at Lincoln University (NZ), his PhD at the Australian National University. He undertook post-doctoral training at Oxford (UK) and McMaster (Canada) Universities before moving to Western Australia in 2006 to start his own laboratory. Bunce has published widely in the field of trace and degraded DNA across a variety of fields; he has nine Publications in Science and Nature. Details of his track record can be found here.
The TrEnD lab specialises in using DNA metabarcoding techniques to characterise biological communities within a wide variety of biological samples from sediment and scat, to seawater and settlement plates. eDNA is a rapidly growing field that has found use in a wide variety of biological applications including: biodiversity assessment, impact assessment, archaeology, food-webs, biosecurity, marine biology, endangered species detection and human health. Professor Bunce’s presentation will showcase some of the applications of this technology and discuss eDNA’s role in biomonitoring.
Alex Grochowski, Principal Marine Scientist (BMT)
Alex is an Associate Principal Marine Scientist at BMT with over 12 years experience working on a diverse range of marine research and consulting projects both nationally and internationally. Experienced with the use of a variety of marine sampling techniques, Alex will discuss the use of eDNA in an industry and environmental management context with real world examples. He will present the results of eDNA projects BMT have delivered, including:
Dr Justin McDonald, Principal Research Scientist
Dr Justin McDonald is a marine ecologist specialising in marine invasive species. He has worked in academia, consulting and government. As a consultant, Dr McDonald has worked on effects of desalination plant discharge to domestic and international vessel surveys to detect introduced marine pests. In government, he worked for the Ministry of Forestry and Agriculture - Biosecurity in New Zealand, where he managed marine biosecurity surveillance for ports and harbours around New Zealand. As a Principal Research Scientist, he now leads a team of scientists and technical staff responsible for protecting the aquatic resources of Western Australia from invasive species.
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The Queensland Division of the Australian Engineering Excellence Awards 2018 has recognised BMT.