24 Oct '13, 2pm

'Super corals' offer hope as oceans turn acidic

'Super corals' offer hope as oceans turn acidic

Corals began building reefs at least 200 million years ago, predating humans by at least 199.8 million years. They're literally pillars of their communities, supporting major ecosystems and economies all around the planet. But while natural selection has gotten them this far, the sudden danger of manmade climate change — particularly ocean acidification — may soon require an extra boost from "human-assisted evolution." People have a long history of selectively breeding plants and animals to feed or befriend us, and a pair of researchers from the U.S. and Australia thinks we might save coral reefs if we can breed them to withstand us. They want to create acid-tolerant super corals without genetic engineering and release them into the wild, a long-shot plan that just got a $10,000 vote of confidence from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation. "Human-assisted evolution for cora...

Full article: http://www.mnn.com/leaderboard/blogs/super-corals-offer-h...

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