The bar code of life

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Canadian researchers participate in a consortium called internationial
"The bar code of life", the purpose of which is to gather information
Genetic given a global bank, which distinguishes plants
animals. This project is based on a new technique that allows
analyze tissue samples of a few millimeters and deduce
DNA base pairs are unique to each species.
The first promising results were obtained by a professor
the University of Guelph Paul Hebert. In a study conducted on specimen
the Royal Ontario Museum, he discovered the four new barcode
species, the specimen observed having been previously associated awkwardly
to other species.
DNA barcodes are considered as being much more effective
morphological keys, used previously to identify
species. However, at this stage the major problem raised by the codes
bars remains the cost. Indeed, in the context of a traditional analysis
the cost per specimen is $ 2, whereas using barcodes
DNA analysis is the same amount to approximately $ 5.
However, before the extent of the new studies that could lead this
method, the researchers are confident and believe that walking
supply and demand will quickly lower prices. Indeed, it is
already possible to compare the DNA barcode each other, and determine
what percentage of genetic difference between two species. By
Furthermore, a term scientists think use this bank
data to limit the spread of emerging diseases and fight more
effectively against bioterrorism.

Sources: Biotech Ontarion,
Editor: Elodie Pinot OTTAWA,


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