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Associated Press
In this Wednesday, April 4, 2012 photo, a technician of Pearl Farm inserts a bead, made from mother of pearl oyster shells, inside a live oyster at the company's laboratory in Ras al-Khaimah. Implanting the bead will encourage the oyster to secrete nacre, which builds up in layers to form a cultured pearl. Long before the discovery of oil transformed the Gulf, the region's pearl divers were a mainstay of the economy. Their way of life, however, also was changed forever after Japanese researchers learned how to grow cultured pearls in 1930s. Now a collaboration between pearl traders in Japan and the United Arab Emirates had brought oyster farming to the UAE for the first time. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

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