Streams

Mysteries of the Coelacanth's DNA

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Coelacanths have been around for 380 million years and are among the most enigmatic and rare fish in the ocean. Earlier this year scientists finished sequencing the coelacanth genome. The project has provided precious clues into our evolutionary tree, including the revelation that the coelacanth is more closely related to us than modern salmon. Samantha Weinberg an assistant editor at Intelligent Life magazine and the author of the article "A Fish Caught in Time"

Guests:

Samantha Weinberg

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Comments [6]

Amy from Manhattan

I don't understand why they needed invasive blood/tissue samples to obtain the coelacanth's DNA, when all they need is some mucous membrane surface cells (cheek swab) for human DNA.

Nov. 08 2013 01:10 AM

"A Fish Caught in Time" is a marvelously written book about the Coelacanth. I highly recommend it.

Nov. 07 2013 01:36 PM

Very interesting! Thanks!

Nov. 07 2013 01:36 PM
maggie from nj

Let me see if I get this right:
An ancient form of life, thought to be extinct for millions of years, is found to be extant.
There are, to quote your guest "sadly not many of them."
So, scientists capture one to satisfy curiosity, and kill it in order to get a DNA sample.
I would refer your guest to your earlier segment on morality.

Nov. 07 2013 01:35 PM
ericka

thanks for this piece. too bad these creatures die in the effort to find out about them; so rare and special.

Nov. 07 2013 01:34 PM
blah, blah, blah

...can't take the accent...tuning out for a bit.

Nov. 07 2013 01:27 PM

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