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Biodiversity, Ecology, and Evolution of Marine Animals


Welcome! The Govindarajan lab studies the biodiversity, ecology and evolution of marine animals. We develop and apply new genomic methods to characterize marine biodiversity and population structure. Current laboratory projects include:



  • Developing and applying environmental DNA (eDNA) methods for biodiversity assessments for the ocean's mesopelagic ("twilight") zone


  • Creating genetic reference databases for DNA barcoding and metabarcoding


  • Developing and using eDNA samplers with in situ filtration



  • Molecular systematics, phylogenetics, ecology and evolution of jellyfishes


  • If you see any clinging jellyfish, pictured above, please send an email to: .


  • January 12, 2022 - We have a new eDNA pre-print out! We developed a large-volume eDNA sampler which we deployed on Mesobot in the Gulf of Mexico. Our large volume eDNA samples detected far more animal taxa than conventional Niskin bottle samples - this will be important for eDNA studies in the OTZ and ocean monitoring networks!


  • May 3 - 21, 2021: Follow along with our latest Ocean Twilight Zone Expedition!  We are part of a team of OTZ scientists and engineers on a research cruise in the North Atlantic Ocean. Research Assistant Erin Frates is currently on board collecting eDNA samples for biodiversity analyses.