CDDC conducted workshop on DNA sequence alignment and new molecular biology tools

Group photo of participants

The Centre for Drug Discovery and Conservation (CDDC) of the Institute of Applied Sciences (IAS) organised a workshop on sequence alignment and new molecular tools on of the 1st of May 2015. This was attended by several IAS, Biology, Geography, Marine studies and PACE-SD staff. The instructor, Professor Peter Lockhart of Massey University, a USP alumnus of Palmerston North, New Zealand. explained the advantages of the recently established shotgun sequencing especially for environmental monitoring of microbial communities to the participants.

Professor Lockhart discusses projects with two participants

He explained that using the metagenomics tool for sequencing enables the microbes present in environmental water and soil samples to be identified in their millions. He also referred to the traditional 16S RNA approach which is still applicable to identify intra-species diversity and comes at a significantly cheaper cost and faster turnaround time. IAS is using this 16S tool for their bacterial/invertebrate taxonomy. The shotgun sequencing approach will be used by IAS/Massey University to analyse environmental water samples collected after the Suva sewage spillage incident in December 2014. Results are expected to be available in June 2015.

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