TrEnD Lab

Trace and Environmental DNA Laboratory


Welcome to the Trace and Environmental DNA (TrEnD) Laboratory website. Our lab is located in the School of Molecular and Life Sciences at Curtin University (Perth, Western Australia). The purpose of this website is to promote the research that the lab undertakes and to provide information about our research program to the public, collaborators and prospective students.

What we do

Only by understanding the mechanisms that determine the generation and distribution of biodiversity can we provide efficient and long-term protection plans for our nature. Our genetic biodiversity research is centred around three main questions, represented by three molecular disciplines. In the TrEnD Lab we ask:

What is present?

Environmental DNA (eDNA): eDNA is ubiquitous in the environment and this property can be explored and utilised in numerous applications. DNA extracted from soil, scats or sea water provides information on everything from biodiversity in marine and terrestrial environments and the diet of threatened species, to changes in the human gut microbiome.

What used to be present?

Ancient DNA (aDNA): aDNA research involves the isolation and analysis of old degraded DNA from a variety of biological substrates such as fossil bone and sediments. Ancient DNA sequences provide us with a direct molecular window into the past – crucial for understanding changes in biodiversity over time. The TrEnD lab has extensive expertise in aDNA research and is housing state-of-the-art clean room facilities.

What happened along the way?

Evolutionary genomics: By sequencing and analysing large genomic datasets from selected species we can obtain detailed knowledge on natural selection processes and the evolutionary impacts of, for example habitat change and ongoing climate changes. How did species adapt to the unique Australian environment and how may they respond in the future?

eDNA/aDNA/Genomics infographic

TrEnD Research Themes

Research themes

Find out more about the research themes and ongoing projects in the TrEnD Lab.

Learn more about TrEnD’s Research Themes

TrEnD Team


The TrEnD laboratory has a number of academic staff, technical staff, PhD & honours students that work across our three main research disciplines: eDNA, aDNA and genomics.

Find out more about the TrEnD team

TrEnD  Lab


Learn more about the TrEnD laboratories and offices which are located at Curtin Perth.

Find out more about the TrEnD facilities

TrEnD publications


View the full list of publications by the TrEnD team.

View the latest TrEnD publications