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Often in the plant community you'll find yourself in a discussion (often around cacti) involving naming and identification of various plants. The arc of the discussion usually starts with crude estimating at what a particular clone a plant is, then comes refining of the 'model' that makes up the characteristics of said plant, and from there any further discussion disintegrates into pseudo-scientific ambiguity. Sometimes (if you're lucky!) the topic of DNA sequencing is used to short-circuit the downward spiral into taxonomic hell: "well, we can only really know which plant is which once they've been sequenced." Why the hell isn't this DNA sequencing happening so we can stop wasting all this precious oxygen on arguments around "what is a macrogonus", or "this is what a pachanoid looks like"? Is it really so prohibitively expensive that nobody has taken it upon themselves to send some samples into a lab to get sequenced? Am I trivialises/generalises how difficult it actually is to do the DNA sequencing of a plant? I am genuinely curious. What are the practical barriers to getting, say, the Trichocereus genus (yes im sticking to old nomenclature) sequenced so we can settle the argument once and for all when it comes to identification? Imagine that this genus has already been sequenced, how would laypeople in the plant community then use this information to correctly identify their plants?
What did the find? Apparently a bunch of different things including (but not limited to): Arsenic, cadmium, lead, dexamethasone, ephedrine, cyproheptadine, paracetamol and snow leopard DNA. Good, but less science-y article here: https://theconversation.com/whats-in-your-herbal-medicines-52144 Science-y (methods and everything) article here: http://www.nature.com/articles/srep17475
I saw a brief news article on stingrays DNA being altered to produce different patterns just so they can be made into shoes. I found this completely abhorrent. I like leather and animal products but this makes me sick. Anyway look at their site and see what you think? http://www.rayfish.c...p?chapter=about