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New DNA Tests Speed Salmon Identification

COLUMBIA - The Columbia Inter-Tribal Fish Commission is testing technology to hasten the identity the makeup of salmon populations to determine the mix in any sample of fish, a potentially valuable tool for managing threatened or endangered stocks.

"The process started out a couple of decades ago when we were able to process tens of samples at a time. The new technology will give fish scientists the capacity to process 9,000 genetic markers in a four-hour period," Phil Roger, the commission's fish science manager, told BakersFieldNow.com.

He said with a mixed salmon population the testing will allow the adjustment of human activity to have a greater or lesser impact on specific populations.

He said the speedup will lower the cost of testing and get information back to managers faster, reported the news organisation.

According to the article, Commission spokesman Charles Hudson said the results will allow fishery managers to differentiate among weak and robust stocks. reduce the human effect on weak stocks and to adjust or eliminate harvests of weak stocks if necessary.

Doug Hatch of the commission's Portland fish science staff said the new method will allow scientists to gain the genetic information with a small piece of fin instead of having to kill the fish.

the Fish Site Editor

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