Stevens Institute of Technology Receives $251,000 Instrumentation Donation from Merc

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The Center for Healthcare Innovation at Stevens Institute of Technology has received a donation of laboratory instruments, valued at more than $251,500, to establish a new Biophysical Chemistry Laboratory within the Biotechnology and Drug Discovery Laboratory aimed at exposing students to biotechnology and drug development. Preclinical drug discovery is the first step toward the development of new medications for the treatment of a variety of diseases.

These instruments will be useful in our research to confirm the activity of newly discovered drugs and to understand how the drugs bind and inhibit the function of proteins involved in causing disease.

Instruments will aide in the study of new drug discovery

The Center for Healthcare Innovation at Stevens Institute of Technology has received a donation of laboratory instruments, valued at more than $251,500, to establish a new Biophysical Chemistry Laboratory within the Biotechnology and Drug Discovery Laboratory aimed at exposing students to biotechnology and drug development. Preclinical drug discovery is the first step toward the development of new medications for the treatment of a variety of diseases.

Merck, a global healthcare leader, donated both large and small pieces of equipment that were no longer being utilized. The donated items include fluorescence plate readers, a spectropolarimeter, and isothermal titration calorimeter which will allow students to develop their biochemistry and biophysical chemistry expertise in enzyme kinetics and drug binding. Had the instruments been purchased at their original retail price, the cost would be more than $600,000.

“This donation will give Stevens more competencies to train our students in more detailed aspects of drug discovery and development,” says Dr. Peter Tolias, Professor and Director of the Center for Healthcare Innovation. “Furthermore, the gift provides new resources for the faculty, and affords an opportunity to move forward with our drug discovery projects.”

The instruments were delivered by Merck in late October and are currently in place to assist with the development of biological and chemically-based drugs.

“These instruments will be useful in our research to confirm the activity of newly discovered drugs and to understand how the drugs bind and inhibit the function of proteins involved in causing disease,” said Dr. William Windsor, Director of the Biophysical Chemistry Laboratory. “Ultimately, we would also like to develop a course that incorporates the new lab for students to conduct research and receive credit.”

The Biotechnology and Drug-Discovery Laboratory opened in January 2014 as a new biotechnology and drug discovery enterprise that partners with other Stevens faculty, students and external academic and industry collaborators.

About the Stevens Center for Healthcare Innovation

The Stevens Center for Healthcare Innovation seeks solutions to improve medical technology and healthcare delivery through education and research, connecting the fields of medicine, engineering and science by sponsoring research, building partnerships, commercializing intellectual property and creating curricula to strengthen skill gaps in the workforce. Over 60 university faculty from diverse academic disciplines are affiliated with the Center for Healthcare Innovation, tackling unmet needs in medical technology and major issues in healthcare delivery with their students. Current areas of research include tissue engineering of cancer biopsies for drug assessment and therapy selection, biomaterials that promote cell growth and control infection in implanted prosthetic and medical devices, drug discovery and development initiatives, mobile healthcare and telemedicine applications, and data analytics and modeling of healthcare delivery systems. Additional information can be obtained at the Center for Healthcare Innovation website at http://www.stevens.edu/chi or by contacting the center’s director at ptolias(at)stevens(dot)edu.

About Stevens Institute of Technology

Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University®, is a premier, private research university situated in Hoboken, N.J. overlooking the Manhattan skyline. Founded in 1870, technological innovation has been the hallmark and legacy of Stevens’ education and research programs for more than 140 years. Within the university’s three schools and one college, more than 6,800 undergraduate and graduate students collaborate with more than 380 faculty members in an interdisciplinary, student-centric, entrepreneurial environment to advance the frontiers of science and leverage technology to confront global challenges. Stevens is home to four national research centers of excellence, as well as joint research programs focused on critical industries such as healthcare, energy, finance, defense, maritime security, STEM education and coastal sustainability. The university is consistently ranked among the nation’s elite for return on investment for students, career services programs and mid-career salaries of alumni. Stevens is in the midst of a 10-year strategic plan, The Future. Ours to Create., designed to further extend the Stevens legacy to create a forward-looking and far-reaching institution with global impact.

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Danielle Wooddruffe
Stevens Institute of Technology
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