Sunday, September 28, 2008

UC Davis Moves Ahead on $62 Million Stem Cell Lab

Some nostalgic folks in Sacramento were perturbed years ago when the California State Fair abandoned its location in a seedy part of the river city.

Last week, however, one of those old Fair buildings officially began a transformation into a state-of-the-art stem cell research laboratory.

The occasion was the groundbreaking Friday for the $62 million project, partially funded with $20 million from CIRM. It was the first-groundbreaking for a CIRM facility in Northern California.

CIRM Chairman Robert Klein was on hand along with Claire Pomeroy, vice chancellor for Human Health Services and dean of the medical school at UC Davis. Pomeroy also is a member of the CIRM board of directors.

The 92,000-square-foot lab is scheduled to be completed in late 2009. Jan Nolta, professor of hematology and oncology and a regular attendee at CIRM meetings, is director of what is officially tagged the "UC Davis Institute for Regenerative Cures, a facility supported by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine."

The first groundbreaking for a CIRM-funded facility occurred earlier this month at USC. The Trojan marching band high-stepped through those proceedings. There is no word on whether the Aggie band turned out for Pomeroy's affair.
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