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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

New species of mould discovered at the Museum of Science and Technology

The Museum of Science and Technology closed in September 2014 after maintenance workers discovered asbestos, serious problems with the roof, and high levels of airborne mould. Currently, plans are underway to complete extensive renovations, expected to cost in the range of $80 million. However, a new discovery has got local scientists very excited: the museum has been hosting a brand new species of mould.

Sixteen months after this original discovery, researchers have completed their analysis of the strains of mould recovered from the building, including a new species which could change plans for the museum. An application has been submitted to cancel renovations and instead simply preserve the area to study the large culture of Aspergillus scitecharus.

“We’re talking about a freaking bakery here,” says Fazil Hassan, Professor of Microbiology at Carleton University, “let’s not pretend it was a museum in the first place. When the best exhibit in the museum is a ‘crazy kitchen’, you need to reconsider your priorities. Just give the space to us and it’ll immediately have more to do with science than ever before.”

Harsh words from a passionate scientist.

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