Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Beyond Biodiversity: Can Environmental DNA (eDNA) Cut it as a Population Genetics Tool?

Version 1 : Received: 4 February 2019 / Approved: 5 February 2019 / Online: 5 February 2019 (10:03:54 CET)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Adams, C.I.; Knapp, M.; Gemmell, N.J.; Jeunen, G.-J.; Bunce, M.; Lamare, M.D.; Taylor, H.R. Beyond Biodiversity: Can Environmental DNA (eDNA) Cut It as a Population Genetics Tool? Genes 2019, 10, 192. Adams, C.I.; Knapp, M.; Gemmell, N.J.; Jeunen, G.-J.; Bunce, M.; Lamare, M.D.; Taylor, H.R. Beyond Biodiversity: Can Environmental DNA (eDNA) Cut It as a Population Genetics Tool? Genes 2019, 10, 192.

Journal reference: genes 2019
DOI: 10.3390/genes10030192

Abstract

Population genetic data underpin many studies of behavioral, ecological, and evolutionary processes in wild populations and contribute to effective conservation management. However, collecting genetic samples can be challenging when working with endangered, invasive, or cryptic species. Environmental DNA (eDNA) offers a way to sample genetic material non-invasively without requiring visual observation. While eDNA has been trialed extensively as a biodiversity and biosecurity monitoring tool with a strong taxonomic focus, it has yet to be fully explored as a means for obtaining population genetic information. Here, we review current research that employs eDNA approaches for the study of populations. We outline challenges facing eDNA-based population genetic methodologies, and suggest avenues of research for future developments. We advocate that with further optimizations, this emergent field holds great potential as part of the population genetics toolkit.

Subject Areas

Sampling methodology; mtDNA; mitochondrial DNA; conservation; biodiversity; populations; genetics

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