Universiteit Leiden

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This Week's Discoveries | 28 March 2017

28 maart 2017
Oort Building
Niels Bohrweg 2
2333 CA Leiden
De Sitterzaal

First Lecture

The merrit and difficulty of using Environmental DNA as a biodiversity census tool

Krijn Trimbos (CML) is an Assistant Professor at the Conservation Biology department of the Institute of Environmental Sciences. After completing his PhD in the field of population genetics, his research now focuses on the utilization of genomic techniques for Conservation Biology. His most recent projects are funded by Generade (Applied Genomics for Life) and Rijnland Waterboard.

To reverse global biodiversity decline, natural species densities and fluctuations in their respective communities must be understood. Currently, morphological techniques are used to determine species communities and their densities. These techniques are time-consuming and prone to sampling and determination bias. A recent development in DNA techniques to overcome these problems is to assess environmental DNA (eDNA). eDNA has been successfully applied to determine species presence/absence. However, the relationship between eDNA and species density is still poorly understood.  During this talk I will discuss the merits and difficulties of using eDNA to determine species density. Additionally I will show some preliminary results of recently conducted studies in which we try to unravel the relationship between eDNA concentrations and biomass of species microcosms and field studies. 

Second Lecture

Boosting our short term memory to flu.

Bram Slütter (LACDR) is an assistant professor in the Cluster Biotherapeutics at LACDR. His research project is: Vaccination against atherosclerosis; induction of protective CD8 T-cells through immunization.