University At Buffalo to Dedicate New $54 Million Biomedical Research Building

By Lois Baker

Release Date: February 5, 1996 This content is archived.


BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences officially opens its 18-month-long sesquicentennial celebration on Thursday, Feb. 22, with events on the South (Main Street) Campus designed to look to the medical school’s future, as much as its past.

Philip B. Wels, M.D., chair of the UB Council, will preside at a 10 a.m. program dedicating the medical school’s new $54 million Biomedical Research Building, and officially designating the former Cary-Farber-Sherman (CFS) addition as the Biomedical Education Building. The program will take place in the atrium of that building.

Tours of both buildings will follow the program.

At 3:30 p.m., Saxon Graham, Ph.D., UB professor emeritus of social and preventive medicine, will receive an honorary doctorate of science degree in the Flint Reading Room of the Health Sciences Library. Recognized internationally for his pioneering research on the relationship between diet and disease, particularly cancer, Graham was chair of the UB Department of Social and Preventive Medicine from 1981-91.

Stephen Schroeder, M.D., president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, will present the Harrington Lecture in conjunction with the conferral ceremony. His lecture title is “The Triumph of the Market: What Does it Mean for Medicine?”

Schroeder represents the largest private medical-research foundation in the United States. The UB medical school has received a total of $750,000 from the foundation since 1992 to help fund efforts to increase the number of graduates entering primary-care fields.

A reception in Harriman Hall will follow the lecture.

The final event of the day will be a private dinner in honor of Graham hosted by UB President William R. Greiner.

The opening of the Biomedical Research Building marks the beginning of a new era in research at the medical school.

• 18 environmental chambers, which can be maintained at from 2-40 degrees F.

From the outset, the building was designed to facilitate multidisciplinary, multidepartmental research groups composed of basic and clinical scientists. The multidisciplinary group is considered the most beneficial milieu for advanced scientific work, and is the direction in which UB has been moving for several years.

Initially, the facility will house the Center for Microbial Pathogenesis, the Center for Cardiopulmonary Biology and the Center for Molecular Mechanisms of Disease and Aging. Researchers in these areas began moving into their offices and laboratories in November. Other groups are forming.

The Center for Microbial Pathogenesis conducts research into viral, bacterial and parasitic diseases, and works on developing infectious-disease vaccines. This group includes researchers from the departments of microbiology, medicine and pediatrics, and the School of Dental Medicine.

The Center for Cardiopulmonary Biology is composed of cardiology, pulmonary and perinatology subgroups and involves researchers from the departments of medicine, pediatrics, gynecology/obstetrics, physiology, pharmacology and surgery, and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Investigations being conducted by these groups include molecular mechanisms of cardiac ischemia; heart and lung transplantation; surfactant therapy for newborn and adult lung injury; nitric-oxide therapy for pulmonary hypertension of the newborn, and coronary and cerebral circulation control.

Researchers affiliated with the Center for Molecular Mechanisms of Disease and Aging will focus on understanding how the actions of key proteins regulate cellular processes and/or metabolic pathways. This group involves faculty from biochemistry, pharmacology, pathology, neurology and pediatrics.

Complementing the new research building is the Biomedical Education Building, which is being renamed to more clearly reflect its purpose. Completed in 1982, it houses the Department of Medical Education, classrooms, laboratories, computer and study rooms, and administrative offices, in addition to the Museum of Neuroanatomy, which is used extensively in teaching.