Funding Completed for Biomedical Labs

Three agencies finalize lending package

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – The approval of a $9 million investment last week by the West Virginia Economic Development Authority completes the $24.4 million research funding package announced in November 2004 by then-Governor Bob Wise to accelerate biomedical research at West Virginia University.

Other elements of the plan, already approved, include $9.4 million from the state’s Infrastructure and Jobs Development Council and  $6 million from the West Virginia Housing Development Fund.

The funds will support neurosciences and cancer laboratories, renovations to research space in the Health Sciences Building and completion of the Health Sciences Library and Learning Center.

“These funds, combined with the other state and private support that has been assembled for research development at WVU, and the $20 million recently secured by Senator Robert C. Byrd, assure that we can complete our Strategic Research Plan,” said Robert M. D’Alessandri, M.D., vice president for health sciences.

D’Alessandri said the university has already recruited ten new faculty members and nine other employees in research areas. Over the next five years, he predicts, WVU will add as many as 852 jobs, including 118 faculty posts. Another 500 jobs will be created in the immediate area by research spending.            

“Once we create the research space, we can expect an increase of $57 million annually in research grants,” he said. “That translates into an $87 million impact on the local and regional economy.”

- WVU -

For more information:
Bill Case, HSC News Service, (304) 293-7087

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