Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

July 8, 2024

Title: Blowing in the Wind (Or the Shipping Container): Airborne eDNA for Biosurveillance

Date:  July 124, 2024, from 2:00-2:30pm

Speaker: Stephen F. Spear, PhD, Research Biologist, USGS Upper Midwest Environmental Sciences Center

Summary: Environmental DNA has become a common biological monitoring strategy for aquatic environments, but detecting terrestrial species with eDNA is less developed and more of a challenge. Development of terrestrial eDNA would be useful for applications ranging from regular biodiversity monitoring to biosecurity surveillance of shipments. Recent studies have identified airborne eDNA (airDNA) as a promising method for detecting terrestrial species. One option is to leverage existing air quality sampling networks to collect airDNA as a measure of overall biodiversity. For more targeted approaches, airDNA samplers can be placed in enclosed environments such as shipping containers to detect invasive hitchhikers. We will discuss the promise of airDNA for biological monitoring and discuss an ongoing study by USGS researchers to detect invasive invertebrates in shipments between Pacific Islands. We will also describe how these airDNA collection protocols can be integrated into point of use DNA testing for immediate results in the field.

Get Our News

These items are in the RSS feed format (Really Simple Syndication) based on categories such as topics, locations, and more. You can install and RSS reader browser extension, software, or use a third-party service to receive immediate news updates depending on the feed that you have added. If you click the feed links below, they may look strange because they are simply XML code. An RSS reader can easily read this code and push out a notification to you when something new is posted to our site.