NRC-Biosecurity molecular screening using eDNA technology:Phase 5

Project: Research

Project Details

Description

Detecting pests and diseases in imported goods can be challenging and not all detection techniques are suitable for the commercial operational trade environment. Noting the recent outbreaks of Japanese Encephalitis and Lumpy skin, the department needs a reliable tool that can rapidly identify the presence of priority biosecurity pests and diseases that can be used in conjunction with other risk management measures.

The use of environmental DNA (eDNA) has increased rapidly in recent years using trace DNA obtained from samples such as soil, water, and air to identify species present. The “Biosecurity molecular screening using eDNA technology” project investigates eDNA technology to determine its suitability as a high-throughput, rapid, non-destructive, and inexpensive way to test for multiple species of concern across the biosecurity continuum. The aim of this project is to trial eDNA technology along with portable diagnostic platforms to determine their applicability for both on-field and laboratory based operational use. Several import pathways are being tested in phases to develop and validate standardised methods for real-time use without the need for specialised laboratories. By using pathways as the experimental model, the project will: develop technical capability in eDNA and/or portable diagnostic technologies; identify operational requirements; assess limitations; assess cost effectiveness; and customise and apply the technology to similar activities for other suitable commodities. The project will also develop a DNA reference database for each pathway (goods, pests and diseases) and expand the eDNA library in each phase to include additional priority pests and diseases.
Short titleNRC:Portable technologies & eDNA
StatusActive
Effective start/end date8/07/2230/06/23

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