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Higher Ed Commission Approves Funds to Boost High-Tech University Research
on Higher Education today awarded $6.5 million to six New Jersey universities
to boost their capacity for biomedical and other high-tech research
and help the state become a leader in the advancement of knowledge and
a hub for high-technology industry.
of each institution's proposal to build research capacity is attached.
NJIT is expanding its academic and research programs in biomedical
engineering in response to New Jersey's rapidly growing medical device
industry. The university will use its capacity-building funds to purchase
state-of-the-art equipment for six biomedical research laboratories
that will foster linkages with other research programs and help to make
New Jersey and University Heights a hot-bed of biomedical engineering
activity. The funds will contribute to the creation of a national center
of excellence that will attract outstanding faculty and students, nurture
new start-up companies, and attract increased federal and corporate
Princeton intends to develop the technical infrastructure needed to perform basic research in the new science of genomics, particularly in the area of proteomics, which focuses on the study of cellular proteins that are important for normal cell function and a key element in the development of many diseases. The university will use its funds to upgrade a fluorescence-activated cell-sorter, add a new mass spectrometer, hire skilled technicians to run the instruments, and establish a training program for graduate students. Building technical ability in proteomics will enable Princeton scientists to compete for research funds for which they have not previously had the technical capabilities needed to qualify. Enhancing Princeton's teaching and research in this vibrant new field will help to make New Jersey a leader in genomic and proteomic research.
will use its funds for seven multidisciplinary projects targeting biomedical
and high technology research critical to key New Jersey industries.
Research areas include animal biotechnology, which has applications
for medical research and endangered species; bioinformatics, which contributes
directly to drug design; physics-based simulation technology for medical
imaging and other biomedical uses; life sciences research in biomaterials
used in implants and medical devices, human genetics, and neuroscience;
molecular and cellular pharmaceutical research related to absorption
of drugs for combating disease; cellular and molecular biodynamics,
which has implications for the study of aging in tissues and new drug
design for repairing injuries; and hybrid materials, which has applications
for information technology. Rutgers will use its capacity-building funds
to acquire and build advanced instrumentation, upgrade lab facilities,
and recruit outstanding new faculty members with proven success in attracting
external funding. The projects will prepare students to meet the workforce
needs of key industries, strengthen interactions with industry, create
new commercial ventures, and enhance Rutgers' ability to attract external
Hall is building capacity in biomedical research with the potential
to impact the pharmaceutical industry, and in material sciences, which
can lead to the development of novel, high-tech micro and nanomaterials.
Advancing research in these areas requires state-of-the-art facilities,
and the university will use its funds to purchase eight pieces of scientific
equipment. The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry has a strong
reputation of providing well-trained scientists to New Jersey's pharmaceutical,
chemical, and high-technology industries. The availability of these
instruments will improve the department's competitiveness for federal
funding and its ability to attract excellent faculty and students.
Stevens plans to strengthen its physical and intellectual infrastructure
in areas centered on the design, synthesis, and processing of multifunctional
polymers. Such research is expected to lead to the development of new
materials and methods for biomedical applications. The funds will be
used to purchase a state-of-the art liquid chromatography system and
support two post-doctoral research scientists, building upon Stevens'
ongoing investments in faculty, instrumentation, and laboratories. Stevens'
focus on polymeric structure for advanced biomaterials and medical devices
will provide a cadre of students to meet workforce needs and will build
the intellectual property needed to help maintain New Jersey's competitiveness
in biomedical technologies.
UMDNJ plans to enhance dramatically neurosciences research and clinical practices in areas that may lead to improved diagnostic and treatment procedures for cognitive disorders and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and ALS. The university will devote its funds, along with an institutional match, to the purchase of a state-of-the-art high field MRI scanner that will enable new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to these diseases. Establishing UMDNJ as a leading neuroimaging facility with the most advanced equipment available will enable the university to recruit well-funded neuroscience faculty members, enhance its national prominence, and further develop its ability to attract federal and corporate research grants.