Project Page

Genomic Responses to the Deepwater Horizon event and development of high-throughput biological assays for oil spills

Implementing Organization

University of New Hampshire


DWH Project Funding


Known Leveraged Funding


Funding Organization

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI)

Funding Program

Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative GoMRI Grant Program


Project Category


Project Actions

Oil System Safety Research

Targeted Resources

Human and/or Institutional Capacity

Project Description

Benthic communities are strongly impacted by oil spills, which render them a valuable tool for assaying and monitoring the impacts of contamination. However, the characterization of these communities has been impractical for large-scale deployment due to the tedious and time-consuming nature of the taxonomy required to accurately describe these communities. This project will leverage recent and dramatic advances in DNA sequencing technology that have transformed the process of rapid, accurate, and cheap assays of community biodiversity and develop a reproducible bioinformatics workflow for the environmental monitoring of oil spills.


W. Kelley Thomas
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