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The Ocean Sampling Day, a Global Event for Sequencing the Oceans

On Sunday 21 June 2015 the EU Project MICRO B3 (Marine Microbial Biodiversity, Bioinformatics, Biotechnology) organises for the second time the world wide Ocean Sampling Day (OSD). The enthusiastic reactions of all parties participating in the first OSD event on 21 June 2014 motivated us to repeat OSD in 2015. OSD 2015 is accompanied by the citizen science campaign MyOSD.

21 June 2015 - 21 June 2015
North Macedonia

OSD 2014 provided 150 samples from all continents, ranging from subtropical waters in Hawaii to extreme environments such as the Fram Strait in the Arctic Ocean. This year more than 140 marine sites worldwide will sample again, to continue collecting the largest dataset on marine microbial diversity and function ever taken on a single day.

The citizen science initiative MyOSD calls citizens to get actively involved in the Ocean Sampling Day. With the MyOSD Sampling Kit and Smartphone App citizen scientists can collect marine microbes and important environmental data. MyOSD will be coordinated locally by over 20 OSD hubs worldwide.

All samples and data will be sent to Bremen, Germany for DNA extraction and sequencing to ensure maximum comparability. The resulting data will be made publicly available as soon as quality checks are finished. These cumulative samples, related in time, space and environmental parameters, will provide insights into fundamental rules describing microbial diversity and function and contribute to the blue economy through the identification of novel, ocean-derived biotechnologies. Ocean Sampling Day is jointly coordinated by Jacobs University in Bremen, Germany and University of Oxford, UK and it is part of the EU funded Ocean of Tomorrow research project MICRO B3.
The novel Ocean Sampling Day (OSD) concept was designed within MICRO B3 to facilitate a global, coordinated, standardised campaign on marine data collection. OSD sampling activities have shown that this new approach is generating an exciting set of new, standardised and fully contextualized data from sampling to sequencing, analysis and annotation of gene functions. Moreover, the establishment of an OSD network connecting scientists and citizens in a global environmental movement is proving to be of incredible value.

The MICRO B3 coordinator, Prof. Dr. Frank Oliver Glöckner from Jacobs University Bremen states:
‘OSD 2014 was already an incredible experience. It has marked a new area in collaborative marine science inspired by open sharing of data, material and experiences. The strong involvement of citizens in OSD 2015 will now add a new dimension to marine science.’

The OSD leader, Dr. Mesude Bicak from University of Oxford adds: ‘With more than 150 research teams from all continents collecting standardised OSD samples in June 2014, OSD Consortium became the biggest global marine network to date. This June 2015, we are thrilled to build on this success even further with the enthusiasm of MyOSD Citizen Scientists!’

Julia Schnetzer, the coordinator of MyOSD from the Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology says: ‘OSD and MyOSD together form a wonderful project giving scientists and citizen all around the world the opportunity to work together to unravel the mysteries of our ocean.’

More information can be found at:

Contact for MICRO B3 and OSD-related Press Enquiries:
Prof. Dr. Frank Oliver Glöckner, Coordinator of Micro B3
Jacobs University Bremen gGmbH & Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology Bremen