Ocean Sampling Day (OSD), World's Oceans

The Ocean Sampling Day (OSD) is a simultaneous sampling campaign of the world’s oceans and will take place on the summer solstice (June 21st) in the year 2014. These cumulative samples, related in time, space and environmental parameters, will provide insights into fundamental rules describing microbial diversity and function and will contribute to the blue economy through the identification of novel, ocean-derived biotechnologies. We expect that these data will provide a reference data set for generations of experiments to follow in the coming decade. It could also function as starting point for regularly coordinated future OSDs.

Ocean Sampling Day is organised by the FP7 project Micro B3 (Marine Microbial Biodiversity, Bioinformatics, Biotechnology), which develops innovative bioinformatic approaches and a legal framework to make large-scale data on marine viral, bacterial, archaeal and protists genomes and metagenomes accessible for marine ecosystems biology and to define new targets for biotechnological applications.

Micro B3 builds upon a highly interdisciplinary consortium of 32 academic and industrial partners comprising world-leading experts in bioinformatics, computer science, biology, ecology, oceanography, bioprospecting and biotechnology, as well as legal aspects.

Ocean Sampling Day will involve all partners in the project and will be open to any other interested labs across Europe and beyond. It will
bring together a large group of marine researchers to undertake a detailed snapshot of microbes across the world’s oceans on a single day.

OSD will take place at various sites, with pilots conducted 2012-13 to establish standardised sampling techniques. All analyses will adhere to the Minimum information checklists (MIxS) standard for describing molecular samples as outlined by the Genomic Standards Consortium.