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Genetic Linkage

Microbiome Analysis of Ancient Feces

Sometimes it can be difficult to distinguish who left a pile of poop.

 

Humans who live in multi-cat or multi-canine households might run into this problem when trying to discover which diarrhea-stricken pet to haul off to the vet.

 

Similarly, a deposit of scat on a hiking trail can inspire vivid conversations on the origin of the feces. But an intrigued hiker without a phone or camera who wants to bring a friend back for a viewing may find the excrement dispersed beyond recognition from weather conditions and trampling. Only a DNA test might be able to identify the species of animal that left the deposit if contextual clues, like a nearby moose, aren't there.

 

CoproID

 

The microbial species found within excrement – the fecal microbiome – can reveal a lot about an animal.

 

To continue reading, go to my blog DNA Science, at Public Library of Science. 

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