How can we use genetics to find out how closely related two groups of animals are?
One way is by counting the number of chromosomes in an animal's cells. Sometimes this can give you insight into the differences between closely related species.
A more detailed way to analyze genetic material is by using tests to map the exact sequence of the DNA or RNA associated with a particular gene or group of genes.
In the Genetics Lab, you will analyze the chromosomes of the Brown lemur and sequence the DNA of the Malagasy tortoises. You'll then learn how to apply your knowledge of genetics to on-the-ground conservation.
The boxes below
outline the steps involved in sequencing DNA. Click on then to
learn the process, which you will later apply to tortoise DNA.