Estimates of damage to the structure alone exceed $9 million.
"When our first firefighters arrived on the scene they found that the fire had already broken through the roof and was spreading through the building," Capt. Patrick Love with the Poudre Fire Authority said. "Firefighters immediately started a defensive or exterior attack due to the fact that the fire was in the roof and we did experience a couple of collapses."
Flames were 20 feet in the air when the 28 firefighters began putting water it.
Firefighters, with the assistance of CSU police officers, began moving horses in nearby barns and stalls away from the burning building. No horses were injured.
The reproductive lab is an important research and educational element of CSU.
"School is just around the corner and as we head into the fall it is obviously a big time for education. We have people come in from all over the world to learn some of the reproductive technologies that take place here," Colin Mckewon Clay, head of the department of biomedical sciences, said.
With the fall semester at CSU scheduled to begin in a matter of weeks, work will begin immediately to look for temporary facilities.
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
(KUSA-TV © 2011 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)