Glossary of terms

environmentalDNA (eDNA)

eDNA includes all the DNA and nucleic acids extracted from an environmental sample (filtered water, soil, air), organism derived materials (tissues, cells, faeces etc.) or whole organisms (as hosts of pathogens, parasites or microbiomes). eDNA can be sequenced directly as metagenetic libraries or after PCR amplification of specific target gene regions.

Metagenomics

The metagenome is the collective genomes (DNA molecules or sequences) of all the organisms present in an environmental sample. Metagenomics provides information on the organisms present in an environmental sample.

The metatranscriptome is the collective gene transcripts (RNA molecules) present in an environmental sample. The metatranscriptome varies with time and environmental change and is unique to any specific sample. Metatranscriptomics provides information on the activity and functioning of the organisms present in an environmental sample.

Microbiome

A microbiome is a community of microorganisms occupying a specific environment which has distinct physico- chemical properties.