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Duque-Thüs, Rhinaixa

Photo of Rhinaixa Duque-Thus
Job title: 

Lab-based Collections Assistant

Joined Kew: 

June 2013

Foreign languages: 

Spanish (mother tongue); German, Portuguese, Italian (fluent); Hindi (basic)

Qualifications and appointments: 

• PhD Goethe-Universität Frankfurt / Main (Botanical Systematics & Taxonomy)

• MSc (Licenciado) Universidad Central de Venezuela (Botany & Ecology)


Management of the Tissue Collections, member of the DNA-Bank and Slide Collections Curators Team and representative of Jodrell laboratory staff for CITES, CBD and Plant Health legislation.

Management of the Tissue Collection

I am working towards the development and implementation of new standards for optimised access and conservation of plant tissue samples stored in silica gel, DNA banking and recuration. Silica gel dried tissues complement herbarium specimens and often provide the best source of high quality DNA for molecular analysis and other studies. Standardized methods for collecting, long-term storage, retrieval and distribution of these tissue samples are essential for the best results in future research applications. I am carrying out research to improve protocols for each of these steps. Many specimens in our tissue bank represent rare and endangered species from difficult to access regions of the world, including unique samples from a diversity of taxonomic groups. The Tissue collection is a centrally managed repository, and aims at managing access and security in a consistent and user friendly manner. I am providing botanical researchers at Kew and worldwide via mail order requests, with aliquots from the DNA bank. I am also part of the team which is running our DNA bank and both activities are directly linked, as well as curating the slides collections.

Selected publications: 

Thüs H., Muggia L., Pérez-Ortega S., Favero-Longo S., Joneson S., O’Brien H., Nelsen M., Duque-Thüs R., Grube M., Friedl T., Brodie J., Andrew C., Lücking R., Lutzoni F. & Gueidan C. (2011) Revisiting photobiont diversity in the lichen family Verrucariaceae (Ascomycota). European Journal of Phycology, 46: 4, 399-415. Available online

Duque-Thüs, R. (2010) Ananas comosus (pineapple). The Natural History Museum.  Available online

Duque-Thüs R. (2009) Beiträge morphologischer und anatomischer Merkmale, insbesondere der Fruchtknoten und Samenanlagen zur Taxonomie und Systematik der Bromelioideae (Bromeliaceae) Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Univ. Frankfurt am Main. Available online