Cabinet of MCZ specimens Photo: Mark Sloan from The Rarest of the Rare, 2004
Genetic Resources Collection
Since the ratification of The Convention on Biological
Diversity (CBD), new rules have steadily increased
in many countries governing access, collection and/or
exportation of genetic resources. This new focus
stems from one of the three CBD objectives of “fairly
and equitably sharing benefits deriving from the
use of genetic resources.”
Even though the CBD goal of sharing the ultimate benefits was primarily aimed at advancements in medical research, the broad language has had an impact on all research involving genetic material. With this increased complexity, existing genetic collections are under more pressure as they work to accommodate increasing demands while complying with more regulations.
The MCZ plans to build a facility for the genetic resource holdings of the museum to help researchers address many of the growing intricacies and concerns. This facility will uniformly upgrade equipment resources, centralize maintenance and collection care, and promote accessibility and conservation of these resources for MCZ researchers and the scientific community.