More about the center
Progress in this emerging field of nanomedicine requires the combined talents of teams of diverse scientists brought together to build bridges between and among the fields of cell and molecular biology, medicine, chemistry, engineering, computer science, materials science and physics. An environment that inspires communication, collaboration and interdisciplinary team work is critical to advancing the goals of this bold new field of science, while helping to create technology platforms and paradigms that provide solutions for myriad unmet needs in medicine, agricultural sciences and sustainable energy generation.
The University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) and Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham) have formed a partnership that provides an organization and environmental context for bringing together the diversity of talents required to advance nanomedicine as a discipline. The impact of these efforts will be far-reaching, not only in terms of advancing the science of nanomedicine, but in terms of economic development opportunities for new company generation and job creation.
UCSB has superior strengths in physics, materials sciences and engineering, with nationally ranked programs and outstanding faculty scientists. The university is home to more than 100 interdisciplinary research units, including the nationally recognized California NanoSystems Institute, the Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies, the Mitsubishi Chemical Center for Advanced Materials and a stem cell research center funded by the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.
Sanford-Burnham is a powerhouse in biological sciences, ranking first worldwide for citations per publication in the fields of Biology and Biochemistry for the past decade (1999-2009). Sanford-Burnham’s life-science research capabilities are extensive, including 5 disease-focused research centers: Cancer; Neuroscience, Aging and Stem Cell Research; Infectious and Inflammatory Diseases; Diabetes and Obesity; and Childhood Health Research. Sanford-Burnham has 6 Technology Centers and 17 core facilities. For the past five years, UCSB’s engineers and materials scientists have been collaborating with Sanford-Burnham’s biology and biomedical researchers on projects ranging from creation of tumor-targeting nanodevices that deliver drug payloads into cancers to the construction of bionanodevices that attack unstable plaque in arteries affected by atherosclerosis. These collaborations have developed to the point where impressive collaborative funding (more than $21 million in grants) has been obtained from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Sanford-Burnham scientists have relocated to the UCSB campus to enjoy the benefits of daily interactions with materials scientists, engineers and other nanotechnology experts. Sanford-Burnham leases laboratory space on the UCSB campus to achieve the desired interactions of its biologists with UCSB’s engineers and nanotechnology specialists.