"The scope of the science that can be done using this imaging technology is staggering and addresses questions at the very frontier of modern biological science."
To our knowledge, this will be the first confocal instrument deployed adjacent to a living coral reef and in a facility that houses other instruments that support cutting edge research in functional genomics."
– Ruth Gates, a scientist at the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB)
Pam Omidyar, island resident, co-founder of Omidyar Network and founder of HopeLab and Humanity United, donated $1 million to UH Mānoa's Confocal Microscopy Laboratory at HIMB at Moku o Loʻe. Her gift supports the purchase of a new microscope that enables researchers at HIMB to examine physiological activities in living cells under normal and stressed conditions.
Coral reef ecosystems provide value to coastal communities at an estimated net benefit of $29.8 billion a year from tourism, fisheries, coastal protection, biodiversity, and carbon sequestration. Global climate change and predicted changes in the CO2 saturation of the world's oceans will have an impact on these ecosystems.
Pam's gift will help directly in the effort to understand coral reef ecosystem processes and to develop possible solutions to help communities maintain their coastal resources.