Researchers are trying a high-tech method to monitor the bacteria problems in a popular Iowa river.D-N-A is now widely used in identifying and tracking suspects in crimes. This project involves the same concept — but involves bacteria on the Upper Iowa River.Department of Natural Resources research geologist Mary Skopec says they’re taking D-N-A samples to develop a library of suspect bacteria that’re fouling the Upper Iowa River. She says the D-N-A map will help them go in and deal with bacteria problems in the northeast Iowa River. She says the D-N-A library gives them an idea of the types of bacteria that have already been in the water, and can help the identify when those levels increase or change. They’re in the first year of this two-year project.They’re gathering and freezing samples of bacteria from the various sources for study. Skopec says this is one of just two such projects in the state. The other project is at Backbone Lake in eastern Iowa, where there’ve also been bacteria problems.
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