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New York State Approves $7M in Grants for Equipment at Cold Spring Harbor Labs

By Alex Philippidis

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory will receive a combined $7 million in grants from New York state's economic development agency that will pay part of the cost of new microscopes and genetic analysis equipment for the campus-within-a-campus that opened last year.

Earlier this week, members of the Empire State Development Corp.'s board of directors approved for CSHL a $5 million Downstate Regional Projects grant, as well as a $2 million grant from ESD's Economic Development Fund.

CSHL will house the equipment at Hillside Laboratories — the $100 million mini-complex of six buildings completed in 2009 — where it will be used for research into cancer, neuroscience, and bioinformatics.

"The scientific equipment which has been or plans to be purchased includes numerous microscopes, centrifuges, incubators, animal cages, animal testing machines, freezers, and autoclaves. Additionally, there are anesthesia machines, mass spectrometers, laser scanners, chameleon systems, and genome analyzers," Hema Bashyam, a CSHL spokeswoman, told GenomeWeb Daily News.

"The majority of the equipment has been purchased and placed in service. We expect to purchase the remainder of the equipment which the state funds are supporting by the end of this year," Bashyam said.

Also included, she said, is the new computer networking equipment required after CSHL relocated its central network facilities to Hillside Labs, and a new backup/storage system for the supercomputer that was moved there.

The total cost for the equipment is $20 million.

"Without assistance, the project scale would have been reduced, hindering the Lab's ability to attract top researchers," ESD said in its Sept. 14 announcement of the CSHL grants.

CSHL has about 950 employees, up from the roughly 800 it had when it first requested state funding for the equipment — a staff increase largely due to the opening of Hillside Labs, Bashyam said.

As a result, ESD has acknowledged, CSHL has exceeded its commitments to the state of creating at least 80 new jobs and retaining at least 800 existing jobs in return for the state funding.

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