Nicole working on accessioning Dr. Detrich’s samples of Antarctic fish. (From youtube video)

Co-op Close-up: Giving Antarctic Research Samples New Life

Nicole Kutenplon, the Ocean Genome Legacy (OGL) Center co-op, introduces us to her work as a Collections Assistant. Nicole, a fourth-year environmental science student at Northeastern, utilized her experience as a curatorial assistant at a geological museum to accession over 1500 tissue samples from more than 30 species of Antarctic fish that are a part of Dr. William Detrich’s collection.

Nicole accessioned samples will become part of OGL’s new Polar Genomic Resource Collection. They were originally collected in the 2014 and 2016 Antarctic field seasons based at the Palmer Station in Antarctica. To accession the samples, Nicole begins by organizing the sampling tubes in new bottles. She then records information from the tube labels, completes background research on the species collected, as well as includes the coordinates of each sampling location. This data will be shared to OGL’s database, which can be uploaded to global databases and accessed publicly.

Nicole’s work will allow scientists from all over the world to access the sampling data that Dr. Detrich has collected. Accessioning these samples will aid in OGL’s mission to promote marine biodiversity and preserve the genetic information of all marine organisms.

Marine and Environmental Sciences
Marine Science Center