Steven Ortiz is one of the many individuals enabling some of NASA’s most complicated research on the International Space Station. In 2019, he joined Leidos as a research facility manager.
From this facility, researchers and scientists work directly with crewmembers flying 250 miles above the Earth’s surface. The facility consists of environmental research chambers, a hardware laboratory, and science laboratories.
As a graduate of the United States Marine Corps School of Electronics and Communication, Steven received training in the configuration of digital telephones, switchboards, and other ancillary equipment.
When he returned to civilian life, Steven continued his education in bio-medical research, maintaining his CPR certification and certification as an emergency medical technician. He also volunteered with an ambulance corps.
While working at a hospital for special surgery, Steven became a member of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science. As a laboratory animal technologist, he trained interns and oversaw operations in accordance with USDA regulations.
Steven’s dedication to research, commitment to science, and passion for animal enrichment resulted in an April 2019 grant awarded by the American Welfare Associations Animal Refinement. The grant enabled research focused on developing forms of suitable types of enrichment for the African clawed toad or Xenopus.
Xenopus are an important tool for in vivo studies in molecular, cell, and developmental biology. Xenopus is the only vertebrate model system that allows for in vivo analyses of gene function and biochemistry. Xenopus oocytes are a leading system for studies of ion transport and channel physiology.