This study focuses on identifying the biodiversity of an environment through the detection of certain signal sequences specific to each taxonomic group. In general, this technique is used to study microorganisms. This line of studies has been started through a joint project with the CRG (Center for Genomic Regulation) and the CREAF to study the prokaryotic microorganisms of Andorra's lakes, funded partially by the Andorran government. to study the prokaryotic microorganisms of Andorra's lakes.

The study of microorganisms is of great importance, since not only they have a direct impact on our health and the health of animals, but the functioning of ecosystems also depends on them. For example, many microorganisms play a primary role in the carbon cycle, either because they remove it from the atmosphere, while others produce methane or CO2. Others fix atmospheric nitrogen and convert it into an assimilable molecule for plants, and others convert nitrates or ammonium of the soil into nitrogen gas.

However, phenomena derived from human activity such as pollution and climate change have a negative impact on ecosystems, compromising the balance of microbial communities and endangering the survival of some species. In recent years, researchers are discovering the importance of the planet's more than trillion types of microorganisms, although they worry that they may be disappearing, just as some plant and animal species are becoming extinct. In order to understand how humans and other forms of life on Earth can withstand climate change, it is vital to incorporate knowledge of this "invisible" microbial biodiversity.

The monitoring of high mountain lakes contributes to studying the impact of climate change, given the great vulnerability of these environments to climatic fluctuations and the increasing anthropogenic pressure.

The main objective of project "Metabarcoding of the Andorran Lakes - METALAND" is to capture a picture of the microbial biodiversity of 6 emblematic lakes of the Principality of Andorra. For this reason, the experience and knowledge of the three leading entities in their field is combined. The CRG, specialist in the development of metabarcoding projects to study microbial diversity; and AR+I and CREAF, with excellent skills in the use of innovative technologies for the understanding and conservation of high mountain lake ecosystems.

Microbiomes (the collection of bacteria and other microorganisms) is one of the outstanding topics in Andorran biodiversity studies. Metaland will make it possible to explore the little-known communities of bacteria that live in the country's mountain lakes. Deepening the knowledge of these species in the current framework of climate change is a challenge to to have more data to study the impacts that this change will cause on ecosystems in general.