65. FINA Awards – Julie Strand – Danmark

Research centre: Aalborg University, Department of Chemistry and Bioscience

Biodiversity and genetic diversity are the major drivers of my research, and due to the accelerating biodiversity crisis, it has never been more imperative in terms of species conservation. Biobanking is a technique to safeguard and preserve genetics through collection of biological material from threatened and endangered species. My research focus is on developing and improving technologies within biobanking, especially focusing on establishing and characterizing viable cell lines from amphibians and reptiles. Viable cell lines are one of the most versatile genetic resources and can play an important role in both in situ and ex situ conservation. Cell lines banked in liquid nitrogen can be main­tained indefinitely and provide a continual source of ge­netic material to complement future research and conservation strategies. The FINA prize provides a rare opportunity to share my research and results at the IUCN congress, with the potential to reach out globally to discuss future strategies within this area.