At the University of Pretoria's Veterinary Genetics Laboratory (VGL) at Onderstepoort, Dr Cindy Harper and her team have developed a ground-breaking technique to collect and catalogue DNA from rhinos and rhino horns. This will help police and wildlife investigators link poachers to crime scenes, leading to more convicted poachers and fewer rhino's poached in Southern Africa.
Known as RhODIS (Rhino DNA Indexing System), this database stores a unique genetic fingerprint for every rhino that has been sampled. The concept is based on the Combined DNA Indexing System (CODIS) used by American law enforcement to store the genetic fingerprints of humans.
Visit our brand new Research Matters website to find out more about how researchers at the University of Pretoria are making today matter with this exciting project.