DNA tests are not surprising, but scientists from the Netherlands have managed to find the use of a long-known technology: a new DNA test will be used for the benefit of the environment, namely to determine how legally deforested certain species of wood.
Experts from Wageningen University are responsible for the development. As the DutchNews news portal writes, according to statistics, from 30 to 90% of tropical trees of exotic breeds enter the market illegally, so checking the place of cutting is very important for saving “our lungs”, because now the control is not performed efficiently. A new DNA test can accurately determine the place where the tree was cut down, and therefore determine whether it was legally done or not. As one of the experts of Wageningen University, Mart Vlam, noted,
“The fact that we can determine the radius of the territory where the tree grew, to within 14 km, is a breakthrough. Earlier studies were not so accurate. ”
In order to achieve this result, scientists collected several hundred samples from five cutting sites in Cameroon and the Republic of the Congo. These samples were used to create a database.
“We tested all samples of wood. I and other experts had 12 new samples of wood from the same cutting sites, and I knew the origin of each of them, and experts – no. After the analysis it was possible to establish that in 92% of cases the result was correct. But do not rejoice ahead of time. We need to do a lot more research so that such tests can be used as evidence in the courtroom. First of all, we need to improve the quality of the analysis and collect samples from a much larger area than now. “