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The Scoop

File / Associated Press
A giant panda from the Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Center leaves with another giant panda to begin their journey to the Atlanta Zoo as students see them off in Chengdu, China, on Nov. 4, 1999.

IPFW signs panda research agreement

Statement issued Tuesday by IPFW University Relations and Communications:

FORT WAYNE, Ind. — Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) is the first university to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Chengdu Base for Giant Panda Reproduction and the Global Cause Foundation (GCF). The agreement was signed June 8 in Chengdu, China, by IPFW Chancellor Michael Wartell, Vice Chancellor for Financial Affairs Walter Branson, Dr. Zhang Zhihe, director of the panda research center, and John Spotila, president of GCF

At the signing, Zhihe said "This is the first agreement with a university designed to establish a research collaboration with scientists from the United States such as IPFW's Jack Schrey Distinguished Professor of Biology, Frank Paladino."

Wartell was delighted with the agreement, and said he "…looks forward to a long-term collaboration between IPFW and the Chengdu Panda Center. This agreement will enrich the faculty and students of IPFW and the panda center and we are proud to be a part of the wonderful research into the panda population."

Zhihe went on to say the agreement will "initiate scientific collaborations that are designed to better understand giant panda biology and develop electronic satellite transmitters that will permit remote tracking of giant pandas that will be reintroduced from captive enclosures to the wild reserves established by the Chinese government."

Wartell, Branson, and Paladino are in Asia to explore agreements between IPFW and Chinese institutions of higher education. They will return to Fort Wayne Thursday, June 16.

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