August 23, 2000

Medical School Announces $160 Million Research Initiative

Print More

Cornell’s Weill Medical College has joined forces with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and Rockefeller University to create a $160 million Tri-Institutional Research Program in basic biological research.

“This new and unique institutional collaboration of these outstanding research centers will allow us to take on the most exciting intellectual challenges of the 21st century: how to utilize the full knowledge of the human genome and how to apply new technologies in structural biology and nontechnology to advance human health,” said President Hunter R. Rawlings III, following the collaboration’s June 27 announcement.

The three areas targeted for development are chemical biology, computational biology and cancer biology.

“Each of our institutions brings unique talents and resources to our partnership so we are a good fit,” Rawlings said. “For example, the Cornell Theory Center in Ithaca, which houses our supercomputer, will play a significant role in this venture.”

The venture, sparked by an anonymous donor who will contribute half the total investment, will include the joint recruitment of a dozen new faculty members over the next five to 10 years. The appointees will have full faculty privileges at each of the partner institutions. In addition, plans are being developed for a shared graduate program.

After the announcement, Arnold J. Levine, president of Rockefeller University, told The New York Times, “If these three institutions had done this 10 years ago we might have been one of the centers in which genome sequencing would have occurred. We have now found that we must collaborate to be great.”

Archived article by Nicole Neroulias