Ancient plant DNA

By Nicole Tarnowsky

Apr 17 2019

Using a NYBG herbarium specimen, PhD grad student Lizzie Joyce turned back the clock 184 years! She was able to extract DNA from a specimen collected by Robert Wight in India, in 1835. Researchers routinely take small samples from herbarium specimens and sequence their DNA to learn clues about the evolution of species within a plant group. They don't often get such perfect results, especially from a herbarium specimen as old as this one. Lizzie tweeted her results, we are impressed with her fine work.

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