RZSS WildGenes Biobank

Cecelia Langhorne in the RZSS Biobank putting samples in the freezer

IMAGE: Allie McGregor 2023

Based within a hidden area at Edinburgh Zoo is the RZSS WildGenes Biobank.  

We are working with the CryoArks Biobank initiative which aims to create the UK's first comprehensive zoological Biobank for research and conservation.

The BBSRC (BBR) funded project is bringing together millions of biological samples held in disconnected collections across zoos, museums and academic collections, to improve visibility and accessibility.  

We are also working with National Museums Scotland to establish the physical infrastructure required for storing genetic material at -80ºC. The facilities at RZSS also house samples for the EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) Biobank collection.  

In addition to the facilities at RZSS, CryoArks partners offer physical storage (at both -196ºC and -80ºC), a searchable database, on-site assistance in archiving sample material, and advice on embedding biobank sample collection during routine veterinary care and fieldwork.

Together, with the EAZA Biobank, we will promote the benefits and needs of zoological biobanking in the UK to a wide range of audiences across research and public sectors. 

Interested in working with us? Contact Dr Cecilia Langhorne, BioBank Coordinator

Project type

Conservation genetics icon

Conservation genetics

The team

Dr Cecilia Langhorne

Dr Cecilia Langhorne

Senior biobank technician (RZSS WildGenes)

Dr Alex Ball

Dr Alex Ball

Conservation programme manager (RZSS WildGenes)