The team at Amels and Damen Yachting has confirmed the sale of the 55m Yacht Support Gene Chaser. The name of the yacht was unveiled during a private ceremony held at the Dutch builder’s shipyard in Vlissingen. Complete with stunning custom fleet colours and a research laboratory, this Yacht Support will be used alongside the Amels 180 Gene Machine.



Gene Chaser, from Damen Yachting’s YS 5009 Yacht Support range, was originally launched in late 2020 as Blue Ocean. Over the last two months, she has undergone a period of intense transformation to meet the owner’s exacting requirements for setting up the interior as a working research laboratory and hub for ongoing scientific projects. 



The main salon has been converted into a working wet and dry laboratory, and other interior areas have been designed for conferences and educational purposes. 
Guest suites allow for eight visiting researchers and experts, while the crew areas can now accommodate a crew of seven and four full-time scientists. The substantial 225-square-meter exterior deck, with a high-performance knuckle-boom 13-t capacity crane, provides ample space for Gene Machine’s Fjord 42 and a Hatløy Maritime Oxpro AL8 landing craft, as well as additional mission-specific equipment.



Matthew Gow, captain of the owner’s 55m yacht Gene Machine, represented this repeat client during the sale. “We’ve achieved an incredible amount of work in a short period of time, and the collaboration with the team at Damen Yachting has been excellent. Watching the transformation take place has been very special and I cannot wait to see Gene Chaser alongside Gene Machine.”



Owner Dr. Jonathan Rothberg sums up the motivation behind Gene Chaser. “Coronavirus reminded us of the fragility of our world. Whether it’s a global pandemic or global climate change, each of us must rise to the challenges we face, as we are best prepared. For my family, this means Gene Chaser and her onboard Gene Lab – a next generation lab to address mankind’s greatest challenges. Gene Chaser will be the tip of the spear as we deploy never before available technology to characterise, understand, and expand our knowledge of biodiversity, and identify nature’s solutions – within her genes – to the world’s greatest existential threats.” 

Dr Rothberg confirms this is also the origin of the name Gene Chaser. “We are going to go after genes to combat global warming and clean up the oceans and the air. That’s why it’s the Gene Chaser. In our planet’s very genes lie the answers to our biggest challenges and the key to our salvation.”

Damen Yachting, a division within the Damen Shipyards Group, was created in 2019. The division combines the pedigree and heritage of Amels yachts with a growing portfolio of SeaXplorer yachts and Yacht Support vessels.

Credits: Amels

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