BGE Research


A range of key case studies and transnational initiatives for collaboration and knowledge-sharing form the foundations of our drive to promote the applications of genomic science

BGE establishes a network of excellence to drive the application of genomic science forwards using concrete case study examples. Our focus is on systems and species of conservation concern and endemism, including saving threatened species and understanding adaptations to the environment, and systems of bioeconomic importance for which the provision of ecosystem services is threatened by disease. The dedicated BioGenomeApp network will facilitate the integration of genomic science into biodiversity conservation and research among public, practitioners and policymakers.

Currently, we are generating the reference genomes that support application. Networking activities are in place and more are being set up to support the development of case studies and promote exchange of expertise, which will also take place through the ERGA Data Analysis Committee. We are working on inventory methods for genomic data analysis and identifying barriers to the full implementation of genomic analyses in biodiversity applications toolkits. We have begun identifying stakeholders for case studies that will help us develop specific engagement strategies to communicate the BGE contributions in a clear, structured, and targeted manner.

“Our application activities will showcase that reference genomes are key components of biodiversity research, conservation efforts and bioeconomy, using case studies connected by activities that maximise the applicability of reference genomes and the link with relevant stakeholders and public engagement.”

José Melo-Ferreira, CIBIO

We are creating a curated European DNA barcode reference library for key taxa, drawing upon the expertise of professional curators and amateur natural historians across the continent. Collectively this will deliver both a scalable barcoding curatorial process and tightly curated European reference libraries for pollinators and key indicator species for freshwater and marine biomonitoring. BGE is also working with existing European biomonitoring initiatives to pilot the use of metabarcoding to evaluate and monitor species diversity and community composition across a diverse set of key case studies: pollinators, soil fungi and invertebrates at ecological restoration sites, invertebrates at agricultural intensification sites, climate change impacts on mountain communities, and invasive marine species in harbours. Together, we are developing a practical toolkit of standardised approaches to DNA-based biomonitoring.