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Philippine Genome Center Visayas Empowers Genomics Researchers with Environmental DNA (eDNA) Metabarcoding Skills in Three-Day Workshop

The Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension (UPV OVCRE), in partnership with the Philippine Genome Center (PGC) Visayas, Ankara University’s Evolutionary Genetics Laboratory (eGL), and the AgriGenomics Hub (AgriGx), recently hosted a three-day training workshop on Environmental DNA (eDNA) Metabarcoding from August 30 to September 1, 2023. The workshop featured an array of informative sessions aimed at equipping genomics researchers with skills in eDNA metabarcoding.

The training workshop commenced with a warm welcome from Dr. Harold M. Monteclaro, UPV Vice Chancellor for Research and Extension, and Dr. Victor Marco Emmanuel N. Ferriols, PGC Visayas Program Director. The resource speaker for the training workshop was Dr. Emre Keskin, an evolutionary geneticist and the current Director of the eGL and OCU Director of AgriGx.

Over the course of the three days, attendees were introduced to crucial topics related to eDNA Metabarcoding, including the principles of eDNA metabarcoding and its significance in biodiversity monitoring and conservation, field sampling techniques for eDNA collection, eDNA extraction, quality control, quantification techniques, and troubleshooting common eDNA extraction issues.

The final day of the workshop delved into the data analysis and bioinformatics aspects of eDNA Metabarcoding, where attendees received lectures on crucial software and tools used for eDNA analysis, including quality filtering, demultiplexing, and trimming. The day culminated in a hands-on session where participants ran taxonomic assignments using amplicon sequencing data and interpreted eDNA diversity and community structure.