The bar code of life

Canadian researchers participate in a consortium called internationial
"The bar code of life", whose purpose 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 a few millimeters and deduce
the base pairs of DNA, unique to each species.
The first promising results were obtained by a professor
University of Guelph, Paul Hebert. In a study conducted on specimen
the Royal Ontario Museum, he discovered the four new barcode
species, the specimens observed having until now been clumsily associated with
to other species.
DNA barcodes are considered to be much more effective
that the morphological keys, used until then to identify
species. However, at this stage the major problem raised by the codes
bars remain the cost. Indeed, as part of a traditional analysis
the cost per specimen is $ 2, while using barcodes
the same analysis would be approximately $ 5 $.
However, in view of the extent of the new studies that 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 barcodes with 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.

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Sources: Biotech Ontarion, http://www.biotechontario.com/
Editor: Elodie Pinot OTTAWA, sciefran@ambafrance-ca.org

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