Decade Action Workshop at IOC WESTPAC, Bangkok

Decade Action Workshop at IOC WESTPAC, Bangkok

24 April 2024, 1pm – 5pm

Decade Action W12 Ocean Biomolecular Observing Network (OBON)

Ocean life – from viruses to whales – is built from biomolecules. Biomolecules such as DNA infuse each drop of ocean water, grain of sediment, and breath of ocean air. The Biomolecular Ocean Observing Network (OBON) will develop a global system that will allow science and society to understand ocean life like never before. The programme will transform how we sense, harvest, protect, and manage ocean life, which faces multiple stresses including pollution, habitat loss, and climate change. It will also help communities detect biological hazards like harmful algal blooms and pathogens, and be a key component of next-generation ocean observing systems.

During this workshop we want to understand some of the challenges that prevent researchers in tropical & sub tropical ecosystems from using environmental DNA tools to understand biological functioning and biodiversity in the ocean. We hope to establish a wider network to help deliver biomolecular solutions locally.


  • Willie Wilson (Marine Biological Association, UK)
  • Jodie Van De Kamp (CSIRO, Australia)
  • Aileen Tan Shau Hwai (CEMACS, Malaysia)

Section 1 – OBON – Setting the Scene

Moderator: Jodie Van De Kamp

13:00 – 13:20

Introduction to session and overview of Ocean Biomolecular Observing Network (OBON)
Jodie Van De Kamp (CSIRO, Australia) & Willie Wilson (MBA, UK)

13:20 – 13:40

Overview of Australian national scale eDNA activities
Jodie Van De Kamp

13:40 – 14:00

Advances in eDNA autonomous sampling – towards a global eDNA observing system
Willie Wilson (MBA, UK)

14:00 – 14:20

Building a multi-national genomics observatory – the European Marine Omics Biodiversity Observation Network (EMO BON)
Nicholas Pade (European Marine Biological Resource Centre – EMBRC, France)

14:20 – 14:40

Overview of the ANEMONE project: eDNA in the Indo-Pacific region.
Michio Kondoh (Tohoku University, Japan)

14:40 – 15:00

Towards enhancing marine eDNA based research in Southeast Asia
Mohammed Rizman bin Idid (Universiti Malaya)

Section 2 – Discussion Session on Challenges and Barriers of eDNA sampling in tropical and sub-tropical marine ecosystems

15:30 – 16:16

Discussion on what the challenges and barriers are that prevent researchers in tropical & sub-tropical ecosystems from using environmental DNA tools to understand biological functioning and biodiversity in the ocean.

16:15 – 16:45

Discussion on how to initiate or strengthen OBON in the WESTPAC region.

16:45 – 17:00

Priorities and Actions

Speaker Biographies

Willie Wilson, Marine Biological Association, UK
Jodie Van De Kamp, CSIRO, Australia
Aileen Tan Shau Hwai, CEMACS, Malaysia
Nicolas Pade, European Marine Biological Resource Centre (EMBRC-ERIC), France

Nicolas Pade (he/him) holds a PhD in molecular and spatial ecology from the University of Aberdeen (2009) with a focus on marine predators. Nicolas became the executive officer for the french national research infrastructure EMBRC-France, before taking over as the executive director of EMBRC-ERIC to coordinate the European research infrastructure in 2019. Nicolas has a particular interest in the broad application of genomics tools to observe and understand marine biodiversity.

Michio Kondoh, Tohoku University, Japan
Mohammed Rizman bin Idid, Universiti Malaya, Malaysia
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