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Plateau Life Science Research Institute Set up in Hoh Xil

A life science institute was opened on Saturday on the high plateau of the Hoh Xil Nature Reserve.


The Hoh Xil Plateau Medical Science Research Institute is engaged in the research in an area covering 45,000 square meters of land in the heart of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, which stands over 4,000 meters above sea level, the highest such research base in China.


The fragile nature reserve harbors many endangered plateau animals and plants such as the Tibetan antelope, wild yak, snow leopard and snow lotus in northwest China's Qinghai Province.


Gerili, dean of the plateau medical science department at Qinghai University, said the institute was set up mainly due to concerns that plateau tourism will soon draw a great number of tourists following the completion of China's Qinghai-Tibet railway, which will begin trial operation on July 1 this year.


Studies by the institute will give primary focus on health problems of human beings living in the plateau region, according to Gerili.


The world's highest and longest plateau railroad will facilitate travel to the Tibet Autonomous Region. About 800,000 more travelers will visit Tibet via Qinghai, according to the Qinghai tourism administration.


The institute has been designated to carry out a series of key life science research projects concerning human and animal medical research as well as plateau plant research. The base is an open research platform for scientists from home and abroad, said Gerili.


Scholars from internationally renowned higher learning institutes such as Harvard have made applications to carry out field studies in the institute. High-level academic research will help achieve the goal of the research in the Hol Xil Nature Reserve which is to integrate biological protection and medical research.


(Xinhua News Agency May 8, 2006)



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