Thanks for the responses everyone,
Incidentally, it is not 'homework'; I am a PhD genome biologist still getting to grips with the finer details of Perl - I am going to use the code as part of a script that will allow me to count genes which are shared across different species. The example I wrote was merely for ease of readership.
So whilst its true that I should learn more about the grep and map functions (although asking questions is part of learning, I think), I'm not skipping my way through some homework assignment.
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