2022 was an instrumental year for Zoo Atlanta’s research team, spearheading studies that change the way scientists and wildlife experts understand different species — ranging from mammals to reptiles — and inform best ways to care for and protect the animals. Last year, the team and partners published 16 peer-reviewed papers in total, according to Joseph Mendelson, adjunct professor in the School of Biological Sciences who is also Zoo Atlanta's Director of Research. For one paper, David Hu, professor in the School of Biological Sciences and the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering was part of a study that focused on the mechanics of the skin wrinkles and folds in an elephant's trunk. Other School of Biological Sciences researchers assembled the genome of the critically endangered Guatemalan beaded lizard. Those researchers include former graduate student Carl J. Dyson, doctoral student Aaron Pfennig, Joseph Lachance, associate professor; Joseph Mendelson, and Michael Goodisman, professor.
A look at Zoo Atlanta’s breakthrough research findings in 2022