X
Share this page:

Poised for New Discoveries, Smithsonian's National Zoo Opens New Genetics Labs

With test tubes filled with sparkling juice in hand, Smithsonian scientists and officials toast the new genetics lab, which the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute officially opened today at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. Genetics research at the Zoo will help conservationists worldwide save animal species on the brink of extinction, better manage animals in captivity and will generally improve the scientific community’s understanding of disease and evolution. (From left: Jesus Maldonado, research geneticist; Nancy Rotzel, laboratory manager; Eva Pell, Under Secretary for Science at the Smithsonian Institution; Dennis Kelly, director of the National Zoo; Steven L. Monfort, director of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute; Rob Fleischer, head of SCBI’s Center for Conservation and Evolutionary Genetics)

Instead of a ribbon cutting, the National Zoo marked the opening of its new genetics lab with the cutting of a double-helix “ribbon.” Although the Zoo has studied genetics for more than 20 years, the new lab was built to accommodate rapidly developing technology and to facilitate additional collaboration with the Zoo’s pathologists, veterinarians, reproductive biologists, ecologists, behaviorists and other Smithsonian scientists. (From left: Nancy Rotzel, laboratory manager; Jesus Maldonado, research geneticist; Steven L. Monfort, director of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute; Rob Fleischer, head of SCBI’s Center for Conservation and Evolutionary Genetics; Eva Pell, Under Secretary for Science at the Smithsonian Institution; Dennis Kelly, director of the National Zoo)