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  Topic: High Schoolers do Cool Fish DNA Study< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Aug. 22 2008,13:22   

Two high school students have managed to do more science than the Discovery Institute has done in 15 years:

Fish Tale Has DNA Hook: Students Find Bad Labels

Published: August 21, 2008

Many New York sushi restaurants and seafood markets are playing a game of bait and switch, say two high school students turned high-tech sleuths.

   What steps do you take to make sure that you are actually eating what you think you are eating?

In a tale of teenagers, sushi and science, Kate Stoeckle and Louisa Strauss, who graduated this year from the Trinity School in Manhattan, took on a freelance science project in which they checked 60 samples of seafood using a simplified genetic fingerprinting technique to see whether the fish New Yorkers buy is what they think they are getting.

They found that one-fourth of the fish samples with identifiable DNA were mislabeled. A piece of sushi sold as the luxury treat white tuna turned out to be Mozambique tilapia, a much cheaper fish that is often raised by farming. Roe supposedly from flying fish was actually from smelt. Seven of nine samples that were called red snapper were mislabeled, and they turned out to be anything from Atlantic cod to Acadian redfish, an endangered species.


Posts: 340
Joined: Dec. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Aug. 22 2008,15:55   

cool stuff.

in floriduh, there have been ongoing investigations into "mis-labeled" fish.

how "simplified" is that genetic technique and its machinery?  

pocket sized and do-able at the table when one is suspicious?

Bob O'H

Posts: 2132
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: Aug. 23 2008,06:39   

No, rhmc.  At the moment you need a big machine and a day or two to run it.  Things might become quicker and cheaper soon.

Hmmm.  I've just had an idea to make lots of money....

It is fun to dip into the various threads to watch cluelessness at work in the hands of the confident exponent. - Soapy Sam (so say we all)


Posts: 2113
Joined: May 2002

(Permalink) Posted: Aug. 23 2008,09:44   

Brava ladies, brava.

I was reminded of a story I heard about Albert Einstein. He suspected that his landlady was using tablescraps for her stew, so he labled a piece of meat, and brought a geiger counter to table the next day. (Details may be off)

"Science is the horse that pulls the cart of philosophy."


  3 replies since Aug. 22 2008,13:22 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >  


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