Antarctic Genetic Archive

Antarctic Genetic Archive

The Antarctic Genetic Archive (AGAr), seeks to preserve the unique molecular legacy of the Antarctic region, providing access to a curated pool of samples representing the diversity of the Antarctic environment both geographically and temporally. By offering access to well characterised samples with complete metadata, the AGAr offers opportunities to peak back through time preceding acute events, assess the impact of environmental changes or forge new discoveries through advancing molecular techniques.

Researchers collect thousands of unique samples from Antarctica, unfortunately samples become orphaned from their metadata, the researchers move on, or they’re lost to storage failures. These all to common occurrences are a huge scientific loss, erasing future potential which could be derived by different researchers, or from emerging technologies.

As specimen collections and archives did for collaboration and advancement of other scientific disciplines, AGAr seeks to facilitate greater participation from researchers who wish to conduct work on the Antarctic but are unable to send researchers, and those who wish to avoid environmental impact associated with an Antarctic presence.

Requesting samples

Navigate the interactive sample browser, choose your samples and submit your request to the AGAr team

You can browse the AGAr samples online or contact the AGAr team via email

Please check your local laws and applicable import regulations which the samples will have to pass through to reach your lab. If necessary you will need to supply the proper permits to accompany the samples in transit.

Requests attract a nominal fee to cover the running of the archive.

Volunteering samples

ICTAR researchers have added many samples to the AGAr, but your generous contributions can expand the diversity of samples on offer

Please let the AGAr team know if you’re interested in volunteering samples

Remember to let us know if you want to be notified of interest in your samples, and how users should credit your valuable contribution.

Help minimise environmental impact

Antarctic visitation has risen from a few explorers, to a few hundred researchers to now include forty thousand recreational and commercial operators. Every researcher, team, tourist and worker brings an ecological footprint to the fragile Antarctic ecosystem with an escalating risk of contamination and introduction of invasive species.

We have an obligation to minimize our intrusion and disruptive activities on the Antarctic continent, sharing the results of our expeditions while minimising duplicate sampling efforts is one more step we can take.

Preview the search and selection process