For security reasons, you will be logged out in 4 minutes
Cannot be added! Your basket contains a blocked quote and must be finalised before you can order other items. Add to basket... Item added to basket

How Dorte Bekkevold Improves
Fisheries with Genotyping


Supporting the focus on sustainability and efficient fisheries management, Dorte Bekkevold and her team of dedicated colleagues at DTU Aqua contribute by doing population genetics on Fluidigm’s BioMark HD to determine how many fish the ocean can spare us without putting a strain on the eco system. The process is however not yet standardized but with the great results it provides, it is worth fighting for.

By Sine Bak Hansen, AH diagnostics


Dorte Bekkevold

Genetic stock structures determine how to fish sustainably


Being the National Institute for Aquatic Resources, DTU Aqua conducts research, provides advice, educate at university level and contributes to innovation in the sustainable use and management of aquatic resources. One of the things they give advice about on a European scale is sustainability regarding fish populations and overfishing.

Their advice is based on several factors, and some of these can be found and analyzed using the BioMark HD to establish where the caught fish – namely herring in this instance, originate from. Dorte Bekkevold explains: “One of the things we do is identify and describe the genetic stock structure. A herring is not just a herring. Herring migrate and the ones that are caught originate from many different places and populations, and it is our job to determine where exactly.”



She elaborates on how they came to use SNP Panels for this: “We needed to develop methods that enables us to identify what you can call genetic fingerprints, which will give us data on the different populations and their strengths to help us determine when and where to fish sustainably.” For that they needed a new platform for analysis of SNP Panels with multiple markers.



The Multi-Application Platform without Compromise



Biomark HD system


Fluidigm’s revolutionary integrated fluidic circuits (IFCs) has empowered research by automating reactions in nanoliter volumes since the first version in 2006. Biomark HD lets users run entire projects from research to validation to routine screening on a single system with the flexibility and consistency necessary for today’s biological research.

  • Flexible: Throughput from 144 to 9216 datapoints. Measure gene expression, miRNA, proteins, SNP’s, and copy numbers, among others
  • Sensitive: Down to single cell sensitivity
  • Fast: One technician can produce up to 147.456 data points/day
  • Efficient: Low reagent use in nanoliter chambers and little hands-on time


In the Nordic, there are more than 30 installed Biomark systems which are used in a broad variety of applications and research fields. Please call our team to learn more about this unique instrument used in agbio, breeding, pharma, genotyping, and much more.


Enter the BioMark HD


The idea to try out the BioMark HD originated from the fishing authority across the Atlantic. “We got the idea to try out the BioMark HD from Seattle, USA, where they use it in connection with salmon fishing to do river conservations and preserve the natural stocks. Therefore, it was not hard to imagine that the BioMark HD could be used in a similar way for us,” Dorte says about the thoughts behind purchasing the instrument back in 2013.


“We are really happy that we started out with this platform as it turned out to be exactly what we needed.”


The process from fish to result is long. It begins with a standard collection of samples that is being carried out under the EU regulations of data collections. The fish are then shipped to DTUs department in Lyngby, where they weigh and measure the fish. They take extract a small sample from the fin of the fish, put it in sprit and send it to Dorte Bekkevold’s team at DTU Aqua in Silkeborg.

Here, the samples are handled in the lab, where they extract DNA and analyze it with SNPtype Genotyping Assays on the BioMark HD with the chosen panel of markers. The results from the BioMark HD end up at Dorte Bekkevold’s desk and it is expected that the information soon will be directly implemented into the advice regarding sustainable fishing to the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea. 

“We have had it for six years by now and besides being really reliable and easy to use, it is also a robust instrument that rarely makes a fuzz.”


On the bridge of a break-through with genetic-based results


Dorte explains the wish for a standardization of this method: “The use of genetic-based results is not yet a standard in the counseling of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, but it is something we work towards as we see a real benefit in connection with our advice about sustainability and fishing quotas.” She explains how genetic-based results are better: “The genetic methods are much better than most other methods to identify where the fish originates from. It is just much more precise.”

Besides genotyping, the instrument has also been used for eDNA and gene-expression studies, so the instrument needs to be versatile. “The BioMark HD fits our needs well. All of us who work here at DTU Aqua have different projects, so the instrument needs to be flexible and easy to adjust as well as handle samples of a lesser quality. It is a necessary feature that you can customize your panels by changing markers to suit your needs,” Dorte says. “Here, the BioMark shines, which is also a reason that the break-through in the process of standardization should be a priority,” she finishes. 

“We are very popular because we can deliver data quickly. That is in much part thanks to the BioMark that allows us to react immediately when we need to.”