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Senior Research Associate in the Program for the Human Environment, The Rockefeller University

Mark Stoeckle is Senior Research Associate in the Program for the Human Environment at The Rockefeller University. Dr. Stoeckle's interests include environmental genomics, DNA barcoding, and visual representation of information. Shortly after joining the Program in January 2003, Dr. Stoeckle helped organize the early meetings that laid the foundation for the DNA barcoding initiative, including Taxonomy, DNA, and the Barcode of Life conference held at Banbury Center, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, New York in September 2003, the inaugural meeting of Consortium for the Barcode of Life (CBOL), held at Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Washington, DC, in May 2004, and the inaugural workshop for All Birds Barcoding Initiative (ABBI), "Barcoding Life Takes Flight", held at Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, September 2005. DNA barcoding was proposed by Dr. Paul Hebert in 2003 as a practical method for rapid identification of the estimated 10 million species of life on Earth. Dr. Stoeckle wrote the first assessment of the rationale and prospects for a large-scale effort, published in BioScience, and was co-author and illustrator of a widely-circulated document " Barcoding Life: Top Ten Reasons" outlining the benefits of this approach. He writes and illustrates the "DNA Barcode Blog" highlighting developments and challenges and is co-author on related research publications including the first report applying DNA barcoding to birds, which uncovered 4 possible new species in North America, and a new mathematical approach for analysis and visual display of DNA sequences. His DNA barcoding work with high school students has attracted wide attention including front-page articles in New York Times ("Sushi-gate" ) and Washington Post ("DNAHouse"). As Coordinator for ABBI, Dr. Stoeckle published the first assessment of the world's avian frozen tissue collections and is working with an international group of ornithologists to collect barcodes for the approximately 10,000 species of world birds.

Dr. Stoeckle is a graduate of Harvard University and Harvard Medical School and completed his medical training in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases at The New York-Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Medical College in New York City. During 1984-1989 he was a Research Associate at The Rockefeller University under Dr. Purnell Choppin in the Laboratory of Virology and Dr. Hidesaburo Hanafusa in the Laboratory of Molecular Oncology. From 1992-1996, he co-authored the annual review of infectious diseases for the Contempo issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.


  • –present
    Senior Research Associate in the Program for the Human Environment, The Rockefeller University