Shark Fin Genetics

The Pew Charitable Trusts

Dr. Demian Chapman of the Institute for Ocean Conservation Science at New York’s Stony Brook University explains how DNA extraction from shark fins can identify the species of shark and where the shark was born. DNA research is very important to shark conservation efforts because it provides accurate species identification and can help identify which countries are exploiting sharks the most. Up to 73 million sharks are killed each year for their fins to support the global fin trade, according to the U.N. The fins are used for shark fin soup, an Asian delicacy retailing for approximately $100 (US) per bowl.