Nanopore Community Meeting 2017
Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 W 18th St, New York City
30th November - 1st December
Pre-meeting workshop 29th November
Advancements in portable scientific instruments provide promising avenues to expedite field work in order to understand the diverse array of organisms that inhabit our planet. We tested the feasibility for in situ molecular analyses of endemic fauna using a portable laboratory fitting within a single backpack, in one of the world’s most imperiled biodiversity hotspots: the Ecuadorian Chocó rainforest. Here we demonstrate that nanopore sequencing can be implemented in a remote tropical field site to quickly and accurately identify species using DNA barcoding, as we generated consensus sequences for species resolution with an accuracy of >99% in less than 24 hours after collecting specimens. Overall, we establish how mobile laboratories and nanopore sequencing can help to accelerate species identification to aid in conservation efforts and be applied to research facilities in developing countries to promote local capacity building.
Aaron Pomerantz is a PhD student at UC Berkeley in the Department of Integrative Biology and National Geographic explorer. Prior to starting his doctoral program, Aaron spent two years leading expeditions as a field biologist and science reporter in the Amazon rainforest, where he became interested in applying novel technology to conduct fieldwork in remote locations, such as origami-based portable microscopes and handheld gene sequencers. Aaron continues to conduct research at field locations such as the Tambopata Research Center in Peru and in addition to exploring portable technology for fieldwork, his dissertation aims to elucidate the development and genetic mechanism of structural coloration and wing transparency in butterflies.