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OSU scientists sequence genome of beaver, school mascot

This file photo shows a trapped beaver near Tum Tum, Wash. Scientists at Oregon State University have sequenced the beaver genome thanks to a 2015 crowdfunding effort. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)
This file photo shows a trapped beaver near Tum Tum, Wash. Scientists at Oregon State University have sequenced the beaver genome thanks to a 2015 crowdfunding effort. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

EUGENE – Scientists at Oregon State University have sequenced the beaver genome thanks to a 2015 crowdfunding effort.

The Register-Guard reported that the funding drive raised $20,001 from 103 donors. OSU used the money to pay for research on the genetic code of its mascot animal, the North American beaver.

The project used a blood sample from the 5-year-old beaver, Filbert, who lives at the Portland Zoo. OSU researchers say they discovered that beavers have 26,200 genes, or about 33 percent more inheritable information that humans have.

OSU says the project was done in a spirit of fun but could also lead to scientific advances by providing insights into beaver populations, diseases and evolutionary history.

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