Scientists Call For International Cooperation In DNA Barcoding
400 scientists have signed a declaration calling for international cooperation in DNA barcoding technology and industry standards.
Asian Scientist (Nov. 7, 2013) - Scientists attending the fifth International Barcode of Life Conference (ILBC) in China have signed a declaration calling for international cooperation in DNA barcoding technology and industry standards.
As reported by the state-run Xinhua news agency, the Kunming Declaration, which aims to promote unity in the global barcoding community, was signed by 400 scientists from more than 40 regions and countries.
"The declaration in Kunming is one of the most important events in the history of biodiversity science. We are following a global trend to open up data. It's critical to protection of biodiversity in the future," said Canadian scientist Paul Hebert who, in 2003, proposed DNA barcoding as a method of species identification using a short genetic marker.
The technology has since been adopted in fields such as biological medicine.
"The technology of DNA barcoding is of great significance in global biodiversity protection," said Li Deshu, Dean of the Kunming Institue of Botany, adding that countries like Canada and Japan have set up databases.
The International Barcode of Life project (iBOL), one of the largest species database worldwide, has registered more than three million pieces of information on nearly 200,000 species.
British scientist Richard Lane said that a global species database could help in monitoring biodiversity.
"The new technology could be applied in many areas, helping us to fight climate change and to keep human progress sustainable," he added.
Source: Xinhua; Photo: col&tasha/Flickr/CC.
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