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DNA Clues To Inform Conservation In Africa

Date:
May 23, 2007
Source:
Cardiff University
Summary:
Tracing the evolutionary history of wildlife could improve global habitat conservation, a major study has found. Researchers analysed the African bushbuck -- a common species which lives in most sub-Saharan habitat types -- to test whether DNA similarity between populations living in different habitats can reveal the similarity of those ecoregions now and in the past.

The African bushbuck, a common species which lives in most sub-Saharan habitat types.
Credit: Cardiff University

Tracing the evolutionary history of wildlife could improve global habitat conservation, a major Cardiff University study has found.

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Researchers in the School of Biosciences analysed the African bushbuck, a common species which lives in most sub-Saharan habitat types to test whether DNA similarity between populations living in different habitats can reveal the similarity of those ecoregions now and in the past.

The study, one of the first of its kind, identified 28 key regions for bushbucks. By understanding the genetic similarity of populations inhabiting different habitats researchers found they can potentially trace which ecoregions are most similar and establish which are the most unique in evolutionary history.

Professor Mike Bruford, School of Biosciences, co-author of the study, said: "The conservation of habitat or ecoregion biodiversity is one of our greatest challenges. This new approach will allow conservationists in Africa to focus their efforts on the most biodiverse and more unique habitats which harbour the most genetically distinct populations."

The researchers suggest the study provides a framework for the incorporation of genetic and biogeographic information into a more widely applicable model for pan-African conservation and, potentially, for the conservation of other global regions.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cardiff University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cardiff University. "DNA Clues To Inform Conservation In Africa." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 May 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070522210929.htm>.
Cardiff University. (2007, May 23). DNA Clues To Inform Conservation In Africa. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070522210929.htm
Cardiff University. "DNA Clues To Inform Conservation In Africa." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070522210929.htm (accessed December 18, 2014).

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