NJIT Faculty, Staff and Students
Robert A. Altenkirch
Sunday, December 17, 2006
Stem Cell Research Facility Funding at NJIT

You may have already learned from the press or broadcast media that the New Jersey State Senate and Assembly approved final versions of identical bills to fund construction of a stem cell research facility at NJIT as well as complementary facilities in New Brunswick, Camden, Allendale, and Belleville.

There were a number of legislative sponsors and co-sponsors to the bills, whose efforts to make the facility in Newark a reality are greatly appreciated, especially the leadership of Senate President Richard J. Codey, Senator Paul Sarlo, and Assemblyman Neil M. Cohen in guiding the bills through the legislative process. The bill now heads to Governor Corzine, who has already expressed his intention to sign the bill into law. Members of the NJIT community were instrumental as well in securing this facilities funding, particularly the efforts of Don Sebastian and Treena Arinzeh. 

Efforts to secure a stem cell research facility in Newark and participate in the State’s plans to be a leader in stem cell research began over a year ago (see my December 11, 2005 message to the campus and various presentations posted on the NJIT web site in which stem cell research funding was discussed). The facilities bill on its way to the Governor for signing is to be complemented by State support funding to conduct basic and applied stem cell research, and bills to provide that funding are currently under consideration.

We will keep you posted on progress on the stem cell research facility as well as the support funding under consideration over the next several months. This stem cell research facility and proposed research funding for which we may compete will enhance our research efforts in the life sciences and biomedical engineering and pave the way for development of stem cell therapy delivery products and processes here in Newark.