GE3LS – Exploring the Impacts of DNA Barcoding



Canadian Barcode of Life Network

Project Summary

DNA barcoding uses a small fragment of an organism’s DNA – a portion of a single gene – to identify the species to which an organism belongs. This project, led by DNA barcoding pioneer, Dr. Paul Hebert, is using these powerful tools to catalogue Canada’s biodiversity. He and his team continue to lead international work aiming to catalogue the earth’s life forms completely.

GE3LS Research Summary

The project is collaborating with the “Taxonomy at a Crossroads” project, a major study being led by social science researchers at Lancaster University who are probing the impacts of DNA barcoding on taxonomy.

The project team is also combining educational outreach initiatives with GE3LS research by engaging high school students in research projects relevant to consumer fraud and food safety (e.g. market surveys of fish labeling).

In addition, the project team acknowledges that there are policy implications that arise from DNA barcoding, and as such, the GE3LS committee is continuously monitoring opportunities and discussing strategies for policy recommendations and implementation.