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Updated 08/07/2016
Participation fee $0
Expenses $0
Spend the time indoors
Location online
Appropriate for kids yes
Teaching materials no


Required Gear:

Computer, Facebook account


Fraxinus


Help identify what makes trees susceptible to a fungus.
Play a social media game on Facebook using real genetic data.

Botanists in the UK have teamed up with game development company Team Cooper to design a social media game that uses real genetic data from the common ash tree, Fraxinus excelsior, and from the Hymenoscyphus fungus to find out what makes some trees less susceptible to it.

Fraxinus presents players with multiple rows of colored leaves, where each color represents one of four DNA nucleotides and each row represents the genetic information from a different ash tree sample. Players are challenged to compare chunks of genetic code between the various fungus samples, as a means to search for genes that could be important in the disease. Players will also match genetic patterns from the Hymenoscyphus fungus to learn more about how it spreads.




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