100 years of Grabia river research – from microscopy to DNA barcoding!

Benthological Section of the Polish Hydrobiological Society


Zalecze Landscape Park, Warta River, Poland

19-20 October 2023

The main aim of the workshop was to introduce in practice the molecular methods used in the
species identification, biological diversity studies and water quality assessment, including
environmental DNA and metabarcoding from sampling to sequences. We demonstrated eDNA collection from water and the further steps of laboratory work up to sequencing with a use of BenthoLab. Novel sequencing techniques with a use of Oxford Nanopore Technologies were
explained and practiced.

During the workshop, which brought together 32 participants including university students, PhD students, scientists and representatives of the NGO Planeta Grabia, we were able to present a lot of issues: genetic biodiversity and molecular methods in biological diversity estimation, IBOL and PoLBOL initiatives and goals of the BGE project, as well as the use of environmental DNA in monitoring of rivers and ponds. We also demonstrated filtration of the water in terms of collecting eDNA. Then we conducted practicals on metabarcoding from bulk samples to sequencing: DNA extraction from bulk samples, PCR and electrophoresis with the use of BenthoLab. With a use of the third generation  sequencing (ONT), conducted during the workshop, barcoding sequences of arthropods from the Grabia river valley (Poland) were produced. They will be deposited the barcode of life database (BOLD).

The workshop was very successful and became the subject for further discussions among benthological society members on new methods implementation into water quality assessment .
Attendants of the workshop actively took part in the practical/laboratory part.

Want to know more? Contact our BGE colleagues:

Aleksandra Jablonska (aleksandra.jablonska@biol.uni.lodz.pl)

Karolina Bacela-Spychalska (karolina.bacela@biol.uni.lodz.pl)