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NCRR Has Awarded $1B in Stimulus Bucks

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institutes of Health has now awarded $1 billion in funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act fund for improved and new biomedical research labs around the country, Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said today.

Granted through the National Center for Research Resources, the $1 billion is funding 146 grants for construction, repairs, and renovation for research labs in 44 states, according to HHS.

The $1 billion total NCRR funding amounted to around 10 percent of the more than $10 billion that NIH received under ARRA in 2009.

"This unprecedented Recovery Act investment in research facility construction will not only give our world-class scientists the modern facilities they need for impact research, it will also help create and maintain jobs in varied business sectors and in all regions of our country," Sebelius said in a statement.

The total appropriated budget for NCRR in 2009, excluding ARRA money, was around $1.2 billion.

"These Recovery Act dollars will provide state-of-the-art facilities for hundreds of researchers to conduct cutting-edge science with the latest technologies," NIH Director Francis Collins added. "At the same time, they will create job opportunities nationwide."

HHS pointed to a few examples of the scale and scope of the projects NCRR is funding, including The Genome Data Center Initiative at Washington University School of Medicine, which won $14.3 million to build a Genome Data Center that will be used in cancer and disease genomics research efforts; and Rutgers University's Cell and DNA Repository, which won $9.5 million for a project that will expand and renovate facilities for its data and biological sampling programs, supporting approximately 90 NIH-funded grantees studying a wide range of diseases.

Other NCRR stimulus grants funding molecular biology, genomics, and personalized medicine include:

• $9.5 million to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center for construction and renovation of a biospecimen core research facility;

• $4.4 million to the Salk Institute for Biological Sciences for facility renovations for translational research in cancer, cardiovascular, and other diseases;

• $4.1 million to the University of California, Santa Cruz, for construction of a facility for studying cancer, autoimmune disease, genetics, and other diseases;

• $7.9 million to the University of Connecticut for construction and renovations of core facilities for a range of studies, including molecular medicine;

• $8 million to the University of Delaware for expansion of a data center of computational biology and bioinformatics, which supports research to prevent, treat, and cure disease;

• $4.7 million to the University of Kansas to renovate the KU Bioinformatics Computing Facility;

• $2.1 million to Jackson Laboratory for the construction and renovation of research space for bioinformatics and computational biology faculty;

• $3.9 million for the Mount Desert Island Biological Lab for a new building to house research into genomics and biological functioning, including tissue and limb regeneration;

• $7.3 million to the University of Maryland, Baltimore, for construction and renovation projects to support personalized medicine research;

• $9.5 million to Tufts University for construction of lab space and for tools for use in studying genomic structure and developmental patterning;

• $1.9 million to Mayo Medical School to build core research facilities that will provide the ideal environment for enhancing scientific advancements in regenerative and molecular medicines;

• $8 million to the University of Nebraska Medical Center to renovate space for use in cancer diagnostics, preventions, and treatments;

• $10 million to Columbia University to build a biomedical and translational research core facility that will be used for life sciences and other research approaches;

• $4.4 million to Oregon Health and Science University for construction of a core facility that will support molecular, cellular, and genomic characterization studies that may lead to research gains in personalized medicine;

• $8.7 million to Vanderbilt University for a core consolidation center for genomics research, supporting personalized medicine and other biomedical research.

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