Asian elephants are more closely related to the extinct woolly mammoth than they are to either species of African elephant.
The carefully collected and maintained frozen tissues and cell cultures that have been banked in the Frozen Zoo® over the last thirty-seven years comprise a unique resource contributing to the description and classification of vertebrate diversity.
It is remarkable that our Frozen Zoo® now contains frozen cell cultures of 9,000 individual birds, reptiles, amphibians, mammals and, even, fish.
It is an exciting time to be a geneticist, in large part because, with the advent of the era of genome sequencing, we stand to see an explosion of information that will advance our understanding of biology.
The Przewalski’s horse that survives today bears an uncanny resemblance to the horses in many cave paintings.
Sequencing the orangutan genome has provided new tools for evaluating gene pool diversity of orangutan populations managed in zoos and in the wild.
Celebrating its 37th birthday this year, our Frozen Zoo® continues to grow in new and exciting ways and make fundamental contributions to conservation research initiatives.
Among great apes, gorillas are one of our closest relatives, sharing nearly 98 percent of similar nuclear genetic material with humans.
DNA barcoding is an emerging technology that provides a method for identifying species from unrecognizable samples of blood, bone, meat, hair, feathers, or feces. It is also recognized as a valuable basic research tool for refining our understanding of biodiversity.
Diversity on Ice: We are creating genetically valuable offspring using thawed gametes in assisted reproduction.
In August 2003, seven African elephants Loxodonta africana africana came from Swaziland to the San Diego Zoo Safari Park in an attempt to improve conservation efforts in Swaziland and launch a reproductive program at the Park to benefit the demographics and genetic structure of the current captive population of African elephants in North America.
Our mission is to help preserve the legacy of life on Earth for future generations by establishing and maintaining genetic resources in support of worldwide efforts in research and conservation.
The Frozen Zoo® at the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research is a precious and irreplaceable resource. It represents one of the most important ex situ conservation efforts undertaken in the last 37 years. Presently, about 90 percent of its approximately 10,000 accessions consist of mammalian taxa, although the most rapidly expanding components of the Frozen Zoo®, in terms of new taxa, consist of avian and reptilian species.
It has long been know that significant disease risks are associated with quality and type of diet. In the genomics era, it has become clear that risk for specific diseases such as diabetes and atherosclerosis, as well as certain types of cancer, are associated with genetic risk factors and the environmental effect of diet.
In recent years, the San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research Central Africa Regional Program has begun to make a significant contribution to both the Institute and external genetics research programs that have clear relevance to conservation objectives.