"identify . . . from"

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Tue Aug 5 18:38:08 UTC 2008

A "Yahoo! News" item about the undesirability of prostate-cancer screening for men over the age of 75 contains this phrasing:

". . . there is no foolproof method of identifying aggressive tumors from slow-growing ones."

I believe I have heard (and seen) that use of "identify" in place of "distinguish" or "differentiate" on other occasions lately.  Is it becoming ordinary?  The "identify . . . from" construction is not easily searchable online!


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