May 17 2017

12:00 LSB 2320

This seminar is sponsored by EEB, SEDS, SACNAS, DMSOM, and GPBS

Nancy Knowlton
Department of Invertebrate Zoology
Smithsonian Institute

Censusing Marine Life in the 21st Century Censusing Marine Life in the 21st Century


We still lack a well-constrained estimate for the diversity of marine life, and environmental assessments typically only consider a tiny fraction of all species. The challenge stems from the fact that most marine species are small, rare, and undescribed by science. However, high-throughput DNA sequencing used on standardized environmental samples provides a cost-effective way to estimate the number of species in a specific location and compare such estimates with those made elsewhere. These studies from a wide range of marine habitats have revealed the enormous diversity of the smallest organisms, and because of their relatively low cost, can be used to provide comprehensive analyses of human impacts on biodiversity. However the taxonomic constraint remains, as most sequences cannot be matched to named species in any database.

Host: Paul Barber











































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































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