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Wednesday 27 November 2013
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The third DNA metabarcoding spring school in Tromsø

Eric Coissac

DNA metabarcoding is a rapidly evolving method for assessing biodiversity from environmental DNA. It has a wide range of applications: biodiversity monitoring, animal diet assessment, reconstruction of paleo communities, among others. DNA metabarcoding relies on molecular techniques such as PCR and next generation sequencing, and requires bioinformatics and biostatistics competence to analyze sequencing results. This approach integrates several scientific areas and requires a broad range of skills, in addition to the classical ecological knowledge related to the considered research topic.

The DNA metabarcoding spring school is now in its third edition and this year it is co-organized by the metabarcoding.org team and the Research School in Biosystematics – ForBio in Tromsø, Norway.
Also this year, the school is divided into two parts.

  • The DNA metabarcoding spring school (31 March - 3 April 2014), that will be held during four days at the Skibotn Field Station,
  • A two-day workshop at the Tromsø University Museum that will follow the course (4 - 5 April 2014).

Participants can register for both the school and workshop (25 places) or only for the workshop (no limit). To register for University of Tromsø ECTS (BIO-8001 registration form) or a ForBio course certificate stating the number of ECTS (no additional registration needed), participants have to attend both the school and the workshop. As part of the course program, each participant is required to (i) give a 12 minute talk about their research during the evening sessions of the school, and (ii) present a corresponding poster during the workshop.


Registration deadline is 12 January 2014

This year the registration to the third DNA metabarcoding spring school is a two steps process.

  1. You need to be a ForBio member or associate.
    • Anyone can register as a ForBio associate. To register as a ForBio associate please visit the ForBio membership page
    • To become a ForBio member you must be registered as a PhD student or hired as a postdoctoral fellow at a Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, or Finnish university.
  2. Now that you have a ForBio status (member or associate) you have to register to the school and/or the workshop itself by filling out the registration page.

All participants attending both the school and workshop can receive a ForBio course certificate stating the course description and number of ECTS earned (2 in this case). If you would like to receive University of Tromsø ECTS (2) instead of a ForBio course certificate, please feel out the BIO-8001 registration form and follow the submission instructions on it. If you have any questions about University of Tromsø registration, please contact Sergei Drovetski (sdrovetski at gmail.com).

Course Schedule

  • The first four days (31 March - 3 April 2014; Skibotn Field Station) will consist of a series of lectures and bioinformatics practicals introducing different aspects of DNA metabarcoding. Bioinformatics practicals will introduce data analysis from raw sequences to basic ecological conclusions.
  • The workshop (4 - 5 April 2014; Tromsø University Museum) is open to all researchers involved in DNA metabarcoding projects wishing to present their results. The results can be presented as short oral communications of 15 minutes and/or as a poster. People wishing to present their results must submit a title and short abstract (250 words) with their workshop registration and indicate their preference for oral presentation or poster.
Provisional planning
March 30th
March 31st
April 1st
April 2nd
April 3rd
April 4th
April 5th
7h30 - 8h30
8h30 - 9h00 Welcome lecture Sampling design

Nigel Yoccoz

Biodiversity Patterns
Lucie Zinger
Environemental monitoring

Anthony Chariton

9h00 - 10h00 DNA metabarcoding introduction

Pierre Taberlet

Keynote 1
Douglas Yu
Keynote 3
Xin Zhou
10h00 - 10h30 Primer design

Eric Coissac

eDNA from sampling to molecular lab

Pierre Taberlet

Diet analysis

Marta de Barba

Microbiology DNA metabarcoding

Håvard Kauserud

Coffee break
10h30 - 11h30 6 x (15 + 5) min participant talks 6 x (15 + 5) min participant talks
11h30 - 12h00
12h00 - 13h00
Lunch + Poster
13h00 - 14h00 Practical 1 Practical 2 Practical 3 Practical 4
14h00 - 15h00 Keynote 2 Keynote 4

Anthony Chariton

15h00 - 15h30
Coffee break
15h30 - 16h00
6 x (15 + 5) min participant talks 5 x (15 + 5) min participant talks
16h00 - 17h00
17h00 - 17h30 Closure
17h30 - 19h30
Travel to Skibotn Field station
8 x (12 + 3) min participant talks 8 x (12 + 3) min participant talks 8 x (12 + 3) min participant talks
Travel to Tromsø

Keynote talks

  • Keynote 1 : Douglas Yu
    • University of East Anglia - UK, Kunming Institute of Zoology - China
    • Reliable, verifiable, and efficient monitoring of biodiversity via metabarcoding
  • Keynote 2 : Pierre Taberlet
    • LECA - France
    • DNA metabarcoding and palaeoenvironments.
  • Keynote 3 : Xin Zhou
    • BGI - China
    • Moving from COI metabarcoding to mitochondrial metabarcoding.
  • Keynote 4 : Anthony Chariton
    • CSIRO - Australia
    • Saltwater inundation in Kakadu Nation Park: can ecogenomics assist in the management of sea-level rise?

Travel and accomodation

ForBio will cover travel, stay at the Skibotn Field Station (including 3 meals of typical Norwegian food per day and a late evening snack), and accommodation at Sydspissen Hotel in Tromsø for 4 days (1 day before and after the school dates plus 2 days during the workshop) for ForBio members. ForBio may also support masters students registered at Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, or Finnish universities who fulfill the prerequisites and need the course for their thesis work.

ForBio will not cover any expenses (e.g., food, travel, or accommodation costs) for other participants who have to be registered as ForBio associates to attend the course and/or workshop. See http://www.forbio.uio.no for more information on ForBio membership. For ForBio associates, the total cost of stay at the Skibotn Field Station for 4 days is estimated at 2116 NOK (256 €) including room and food.


ForBio members and invited participants do not need to reserve or pay for accommodation at the Sydspissen hotel. ForBio will reserve rooms for them and pay the bill directly. All participants, except invited participants, have to buy their own airplane tickets to Tromsø. ForBio members and approved masters student associates will be reimbursed for travel expenses. According to the UiT rules, ForBio members have to use the least expensive tickets available for their travel route. It’s important to keep all receipts and other travel documents (e.g., boarding passes). Without boarding passes, airfare will not be reimbursed. ForBio members will need to fill out the travel expenses form (download the travel expenses form in PDF format in English or Norwegian). The form with the original signature and original receipts (electronic receipts for airfare are acceptable) have to be sent to:

Sergei V. Drovetski
Tromsø University Museum
University of Tromsø ­­­ – The Arctic University of Norway
PO Box 6050 Langnes
NO-9037 Tromsø, Norway
e-mail: sdrovetski at gmail.com

Important: The form, travel documents, and receipts should arrive no later than 21 April, 2014. Do not forget to fill in birth date/ID-number, bank account number, and sign the form. Those who do not have a Norwegian bank account have to fill an additional form - the foreign bank transfer form (download the foreign bank transfer form in PDF format).

Public transportation in Tromsø

Although there are public buses available in Tromsø, 3 people sharing a taxi will save money and a lot of time.
There are several ways to get from Tromsø airport to Sydspissen hotel using buses. Unfortunately, none of these are straightforward. One way is to take the flybussen (airport bus) to Tromsø center (Saturday and Sunday) or Polaria (Monday-Friday) and then take bus 34 to Sydspissen hotel in the direction of University of Tromsø (Brevica campus). Alternatively, it is possible to take bus 40 or 42 (the bus stop is located behind the parking lot/garage which you can see when exiting the airport building) to Giæverbukta shopping mall and change to bus 34 in the direction of the city center. Bus stops and schedules are provided on this map. The flybussen costs 70 NOK and city buses cost 42 NOK (cash only!).

Twitter : @Metabarcoding
Editorial board
  • BRANDNER Melissa
    • University of Nordland
    • Bodø (Norway)
  • BROCHMANN Christian
    • National Centre for Biosystematics
    • Oslo (Norway)
  • CHARITON Anthony
    • CSIRO Land and Water
    • Lucas Heights NA (Australia)
  • DEAGLE Bruce
    • University of Victoria
    • Victoria (Canada)
  • Eric Coissac
    • LECA
    • Grenoble (France)
  • KASAPIDIS Panagiotis
    • Hellenic Center for Marine Research
    • Irakleion, Crete (Greece)
    • Université de Genève
    • Genève 4 (Switzerland)
  • TABERLET Pierre
    • LECA,
    • Grenoble (France)
    • Centre for GeoGenetics
    • Copenhagen (Denmark)
  • ZINGER Lucie
    • IBENS
    • Paris (France)
  • Vodka, Bison and Metabarcoding

    31 July 2015, by BRANDNER Melissa

    The start of last month saw the occurrence of the Fifth Metabarcoding Spring School held in Białowieża National Park , Poland. A variety of scientists attended from all over the globe to learn, share and inspire with unique stories of metabarcoding.
    The scientists at the Mammal Research Institute PAS in Białowieża National Park hosted this year’s workshop. And our hats go off to them for the organizational skills, warmth and hospitality. During the week, experienced metabarcoders gave lectures on their trials and tribulations in the field of metabarcoding, sparking conversations between the attendees. The end of the first day saw flash talks from all participants of the event, creating an icebreaker and showing the wide variety of applications for metabarcoding, including, dietary studies, environmental health, fundamental ecology and exploration of rare and ancient habitats.
    Pierre Taberlet (who is rumoured to run 8000 PCR a day!) taught technical aspects such as DNA extraction in (...)

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