The TREC expedition

In summer 2023 TREC comes to the NOC Southampton to gather biological samples and environmental data along the coastline. The entire expedition, which runs between April 2023 and June 2024, will collect more than 120 land-sea transects along the European coastline. Watch our social channels to follow the Southampton visit and get involved with activities for the public and schools.

About the expedition

The expedition will combine ocean exploration, conducted by the Tara Ocean Foundation and Tara Oceans Consortium, with parallel sampling of soil, sediment, shallow water, and selected model organisms in various habitats, supported by EMBL’s land-based mobile services and local marine research institutions. Organismal diversity will be studied across scales, from viruses, bacteria, and protists to multicellular groups such as algae and animals. Analysis will involve various meta- and single-cell omics as well as barcoding techniques that will be combined with innovative microscopy pipelines including automated imaging and electron microscopy. This will allow unprecedented detail in associating molecular and morphological data at the single-organism and single-cell level. Besides standard oceanographic metadata, special emphasis will be on detecting metabolites as well as physical and chemical (i.e. inorganic and organic pollutants such as metals, pesticides, hormones, and antibiotics) characterisation of the sampled habitats, providing the environmental framework to the biodiversity and adaptation analyses.

Overall, the expedition will conduct systematic, standardised, and integrated sampling with multimodal environmental metadata acquisition. This integrated profiling across environmental and man-made gradients of micro- and macroscopic life will enable us to obtain a first of the kind, pan-European census of European coastal ecosystems.

Event dates: 
Sunday 13 August 2023 - 00:00 to Saturday 19 August 2023 - 00:00