How a homely lemur’s genome may help save it

The following is an edited excerpt.

With its wide-set yellow eyes, oversize ears and long, skeletal fingers, the aye-aye is not Madagascar’s cuddliest-looking lemur. This elusive, nocturnal animal has joined a motley crew of rare animals, including Tasmanian devils, pygmy elephants and many others, whose complete genetic codes, or genomes, researchers have sequenced and analyzed in search of information that might help keep them on the planet.

In a study released today (March 25) by the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a team sequenced the genomes from 12 aye-ayes from three regions in Madagascar and compared them. They found aye-ayes from one region, in the north of the island country, were genetically distinct from those in western and eastern regions.

The results are important for conservation of the species, researchers say.

Read the full article here: How a Homely Lemur’s Genome May Help Save It

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