Traffic Update: Temporary New Traffic Pattern, Public Meeting on Goodell Street Corridor Project.

As construction continues at the Trico building located at the corners of Ellicott/Washington Streets and Goodell, The City of Buffalo has advised BNMC that Kandey Corp, one of the contractors working on the project, will be implementing some minor traffic pattern changes in the area that are necessary to facilitate work on infrastructure as the project advances.

Beginning on December 1st Ellicott Street will be closed from Virginia to Goodell. That section will be open to local traffic only to access the BNMC Innovation Center and parking lot at 640 and 589 Ellicott respectively.

A detour will be in effect and a map of the new traffic pattern can be found here.

Once the City or the contractor have advised us of a completion date for the work, we will post an update to this article.

In other traffic news, there will be a final public meeting on the Goodell Street Corridor Project on November 29th. Participants who would like to share their thoughts are invited to attend in person or virtually. More information can be found here.

About the BNMC

For more than twenty years, The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus organization (BNMC) has been a driving force The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus organization (BNMC) has been a driving force in Buffalo’s economic renaissance. Throughout its management of the growth of Buffalo’s premier innovation district, the BNMC has foregrounded smart economic, social, and environmental development, prioritizing health & well-being, and sustainability. Today, the BNMC is focused on the next phase of Buffalo’s ongoing resurgence, cultivating inclusive innovation in partnership with our community. In 2021 BNMC spearheaded the initiative to bring the national programs forAll and Eforever to Buffalo. These proven programs support aspiring entrepreneurs from all backgrounds to help them start or grow a business. Program graduates will form the heart of Buffalo’s growing Innovation Community comprised of businesses large and small in an array of disciplines and leading the region’s next wave of economic development and growth.

Presenting the 2nd Annual Food as Medicine Symposium, “A Bridge to Health.”

BUFFALO NY– On October 13, the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus’ Health & Well-Being division presented its second annual Food as Medicine Symposium, bringing together a range of national and local pioneers in the field to discuss research and policy in the Food as Medicine space. The Keynote address “Food as Medicine: Dietary Priorities and Policy Actions After the White House Conference,” was presented by Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, Dean of Policy at Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. The symposium was held at the UB Center for Bioinformatics and Life Sciences at 701 Ellicott Street in Buffalo. More information about the event can be found here.

BNMC and its partner institutions have been a driving force in a campus-wide effort to improve access to healthy food in hospitals and the surrounding community, collaborating with Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, and other medical facilities on the Campus. Together, they have implemented the Farm to Hospital program which has connected local farmers and growers to food procurement systems at area hospitals. This program has allowed BNMC partners to serve healthy, locally sourced food to the tens of thousands of patients and visitors that rely on campus resources each year while also benefitting local farmers and agricultural entrepreneurs.

More recently, the BNMC has spearheaded the formation of the Western New York Food as Medicine Coalition, a group that brings more than 40 partners together to share best practices and expand and accelerate the impact of Food as Medicine programs on advancing health in our region.

Elizabeth (Beth) Machnica, Director of Community Well-Being at BNMC said, “Food is undoubtedly a major factor in the determination of medical outcomes, decades of research have shown us this. What we are missing is a broader awareness of the concept and the movement. Our symposium is open to all that would like to learn more and join us in discovering the latest developments and innovations to engage and empower our communities to evaluate the relationships between diet, medical outcomes, and overall health and well-being.”

Conference organizer and BNMC Associate Director of Health and Well-Being Marla Guarino added “The food as medicine discipline is growing and gaining momentum in the United States, at the BNMC we want to ensure our campus and community are at the forefront of innovation and leadership in the field. This is important for our city which has been, and still is, home to food inequities in our communities. Our symposium will spotlight that and point us toward how we can make meaningful change.”

About Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus  

For more than twenty years, The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus organization (BNMC) has been a driving force in Buffalo’s economic renaissance. Throughout its management of the growth of Buffalo’s premier innovation district, the BNMC has foregrounded smart economic, social, and environmental development, prioritizing health & well-being, and sustainability. Today, the BNMC is focused on the next phase of Buffalo’s ongoing resurgence, cultivating inclusive innovation in partnership with our community. In 2021 BNMC spearheaded the initiative to bring the national programs EforAll and Eforever to Buffalo. These proven programs support aspiring entrepreneurs from all backgrounds to help them start or grow a business. Program graduates will form the heart of Buffalo’s growing Innovation Community comprised of businesses large and small in an array of disciplines and leading the region’s next wave of economic development and growth. BNMC  www.bnmc.org

Introducing City Forward, the story of the BNMC.

We are delighted to share the news that City Forward: How Innovation Districts Can Embrace Risk and Strengthen Community, a new book by Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) President and CEO, Matt Enstice with Mike Gluck, was published today by Island Press.

The book tells the compelling story of the establishment and growth of Western New York’s premier innovation district.

Innovation districts and anchor institutions—like hospitals, universities, and technology hubs—are celebrated for their ability to drive economic growth and employment opportunities. But the benefits often fail to reach the very neighborhoods they are built-in. As CEO of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Matt Enstice took a different approach. Under Matt’s leadership, BNMC has supported entrepreneurship training programs and mentorship for community members, the creation of a community garden, bringing together diverse groups to explore transportation solutions, and more. Fostering participation and collaboration among neighborhood leaders, foundations, and other organizations ensures that the interests of Buffalo residents are represented. Together, these groups are creating a new model for re-energizing Buffalo—a model that has applications across the United States and around the world.

City Forward explains how BNMC works to promote a shared goal of equity among companies and institutions with often opposing motivations and intentions. When money or time is scarce, how can equitable community-building remain a common priority? When interests conflict and an institution’s expansion depends upon parking or development that would infringe upon public space, how can the decision-making process maintain trust and collaboration? Offering a candid look at BNMC’s setbacks and successes, along with efforts from other institutions nationwide, Enstice shares twelve strategies that innovation districts can harness to weave equity into their core work. From actively creating opportunities to listen to the community, to navigating compromise, to recruiting new partners, the book reveals unique opportunities available to create decisive, large-scale change. Critically, Enstice also offers insight into how innovation districts can speak about equity in an inclusive manner and keep underrepresented and historically excluded voices at the decision-making table.

Accessible, engaging, and packed with fresh ideas applicable to any city, this book is an invaluable resource. Institutional leadership, business owners, and professionals hoping to make equitable change within their companies and organizations will find experienced direction here. City Forward is a refreshing look at the brighter, more equitable futures that we can create through thoughtful and strategic collaboration—moving forward, together.

All proceeds from the sale of this book will be used to further diversity, inclusion, and equity-related efforts throughout our community, You can purchase a copy here.

You can read the full press release here.

Ted Walsh to Assume Leadership of BNMC Board to Lead Next Phase of Region’s Economic, Social, and Environmental Development

The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Edward F. Walsh, Jr. (Ted) as the new Chairperson of the Board of Directors. An active champion of community development and growth, Ted brings over 44 years of experience in leadership to the BNMC Board and is poised to lead the organization as it advances the next wave of Buffalo’s economic development. He succeeds David Zebro, who led BNMC to create one of the most environmentally sustainable areas in the City of Buffalo, while creating numerous opportunities for businesses and organizations in the medical and technology fields.

BNMC President and Chief Executive Officer Matt Enstice said “Ted brings a wealth of experience in leadership to the BNMC Board which will be invaluable as we continue to move the organization forward building on our legacy of innovation and entrepreneurship to advance our region’s economic, social, and environmental agenda. Our mission to create an innovation community in Buffalo that provides essential support for everyone, particularly those in historically underserved communities seeking to start or grow their business will flourish under Ted’s stewardship. Ensuring access to entrepreneurship for everyone is the essential next step for our community as we continue to drive our region’s resurgence. Ted is uniquely positioned to lead that effort.”

As it has grown and managed Western New York’s premier medical campus and Innovation district, BNMC has been a long-standing supporter of startup companies, particularly those engaged in the fields of environmental sustainability, providing the essential support that has enabled their businesses to thrive. As part of its work in developing a sustainable innovation district in Buffalo, BNMC has helped to develop and nurture enterprises such as GObike Buffalo and Shared Mobility, Inc. To broaden this effort, in 2021, BNMC partnered with the national organizations EforAll and Eforever, to bring their proven programs to Buffalo. In April of 2o22, a cohort of 14 Buffalo entrepreneurs graduated from the EforAll program which provided hands-on training, mentorship, and support to each new business.  The group will now join the Eforever program which will continue to provide resources and support as these nascent companies grow and develop. Program graduates will form the heart of Buffalo’s growing Innovation Community comprised of businesses large and small in a range of disciplines, leading the region’s next wave of economic development.

Speaking about his appointment, Ted Walsh noted “It has never been more important that our city engage in a significant effort to ensure more equitable access to the opportunity to start or grow a company. We need to support and develop entrepreneurs in every kind of business, not just those in the fields of science and technology, to ensure that our community’s continued economic development is built on a solid, diverse foundation across a range of disciplines. I look forward to leading BNMC in this vital endeavor.”

Ted Walsh has held several leadership positions at numerous organizations throughout Western New York including Chair of the Board at Kaleida Health, United Way of Buffalo and Erie County, Goodwill Industries of WNY, Nichols School, and the Center for Hospice & Palliative Care. In addition, he also serves as Treasurer of the John R. Oishei Foundation and as Chairperson of the Josephine Goodyear Foundation.

Ted has been recognized for his many outstanding accomplishments, both in his professional achievements as well as his dedication to serving the WNY community. In 2018, the Walsh family was recognized by NFJC with its annual family award. In 2013, Ted received recognition as a Red Jacket Award winner from the Buffalo History Museum. In 2011, he was honored to be Canisius College’s Business Executive of the Year Award recipient, a Goodwill Industries of WNY award recipient, and a Florence M. Conti Award recipient. In 2008 Kaleida Health dedicated the Edward F. Walsh, Jr. Emergency Department at the Buffalo General Medical Center in his name. In addition, Ted and his wife Ginna Remington Walsh were named the United Way Philanthropists of the Year by the Alexis de Tocqueville Society.

Ted graduated from Nichols School in 1972 and Williams College in 1976 and began his insurance career that same year with the Continental Insurance Company. He joined Walsh Duffield in 1977. As Chief Executive Officer, Ted is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the firm.

Ted lives in Buffalo, New York, with his wife, Ginna.  They have raised their two daughters, Liza and Ellie, in Buffalo. They are proud grandparents of Avery, Haley, Grant, Addison, and Colette.

About Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus  

For more than twenty years, The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus organization (BNMC) has been a driving force of Buffalo’s economic renaissance. Throughout its management of the growth of Buffalo’s premier innovation district, the BNMC has foregrounded smart economic, social, and environmental development. Today, the BNMC is focused on the next phase of Buffalo’s ongoing resurgence, cultivating inclusive innovation in partnership with our community. In 2021 BNMC spearheaded the initiative to bring the national programs EforAll and Eforever to Buffalo. These proven programs support aspiring entrepreneurs from all backgrounds to help them start or grow a business. Program graduates will form the heart of Buffalo’s growing Innovation Community comprised of businesses large and small in an array of disciplines and leading the region’s next wave of economic development and growth. www.bnmc.org.  

Introducing A Safer, More Vibrant Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus

Left: Hervé Tullet, Traits points taches giboullage (Lines dots stains scribbles), is located at 847 Main
Continuous Improvements Make the Campus a Destination, a Resource, and a Connector for All in Western New York.

BNMC Inc, the organization that operates the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and its innovation community, recently announced a range of initiatives to enhance the safety and beauty of the Campus.

In collaboration with the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, BNMC has added three striking new murals to the area by internationally renowned artist Hervé Tullet and celebrated local artists Muhammad Zaman and Ashley Johnson. The Zaman and Johnson murals are being incorporated into pedestrian safety improvements along Ellicott Street that BNMC worked with GObike to implement. The BNMC will seek to expand its public art program and safety initiatives throughout the area in the coming years.

Jamie Hamann Burney, Director of Campus Planning and Implementation said, “Our Campus is a magnet for innovators, researchers, and healthcare workers, and sees over 1.5M patients and visitors every year. We’re also part of a larger surrounding community and we strive to create places where everyone can gather and connect in a safe environment.  Bringing great art to the Campus all the while making it safer for all who rely on its resources is a win-win for everyone.  Look for more exciting projects coming soon.”

This year’s largest mural is by the internationally renowned artist, performer, and beloved children’s book author Hervé Tullet, and was executed in tandem with his largest exhibition to date, Shape and Color, which was on view at Abright-Knox Northland this summer. The BNMC mural, entitled Traits points taches giboullage (Lines dots stains scribbles), is located at 847 Main Street and is the second-ever public mural by the artist. The site was selected in part because it will live on the Campus, a site for healing, but also because of the many diverse cultural activities that BNMC champions and supports. The artist’s design is based on original works that were included in the AK Northland exhibition. The mural outline was printed on polytab, a mobile and flexible non-woven fabric, and completed at Buffalo Arts Studio by Jump Start program students who learned Tullet’s techniques that allowed them to complete the mural while also helping them develop their own portfolios as they contributed to the production of a major work of public art.

In addition, two other new murals have been added to the Campus. These murals serve not only to beautify the area and highlight the voices of leading local artists, but also to improve crosswalk and intersection safety. They have been produced in collaboration with GObike Buffalo and the Albright-Knox, with funding support from the Ralph Wilson Foundation and the University at Buffalo. Christina Orsi, Associate Vice President for Economic Development at UB said “We are thrilled to continue to support improvements that make the BNMC campus a leading destination for our community of innovators. Together, we forge greater connections with the surrounding community in a place where our differences become our strengths to enable lasting impressions and impacts in Western New York and beyond.”

Ashley Johnson’s work at Ellicott and Virginia Streets

Let’s Walk Together (detail), Muhammad Zaman at the Innovation Center

The murals are designed by artists Ashley Johnson and Muhammad Zaman. Johnson and Zaman working at 640 Ellicott Street and the intersection of Ellicott and Virginia Streets respectively, have each wp-contentlied their signature styles to the spaces.

Walk Together is an abstract work by Zaman at the crosswalk and pathway to the BNMC’s Innovation Center at 640 Ellicott. It is based on the concept that sharing a path together connects people to one another, echoing the importance of the connections made in the building and throughout the Campus community every day.

Artist Ashley Johnson is working on an abstract design on Ellicott and Virginia that evokes BNMC’s role in leveraging economic development on the Campus for the benefit of the overall community. With shape and color, the work explores the connectivity and interrelationships that make communities thrive.

“Through our Healthy Streets Initiative, we have been able to work with institutions and residents across the city to inexpensively develop temporary traffic calming solutions to immediately address safety needs,” said Justin Booth, Executive Director for GObike Buffalo. “We were hwp-contenty to partner with the BNMC and Albright-Knox to deliver this innovative project to do more than improve safety but beautify our city while doing so.”

The BNMC also worked closely with the City of Buffalo to plan and implement additional complete street improvements on the Campus this year. The City reconstructed Virginia and Burton Streets, widening the sidewalks, adding bike lanes, and installing mid-block pedestrian crossings on both Washington and Ellicott Streets.

 

 

 

BNMC & Partners Awarded up to $8.2 Million to Improve Transportation Access.

The United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) has selected the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BMNC) as one of five U.S. locations to pilot the Complete Trip – ITS4US Deployment Program.  The Complete Trip – ITS4US Deployment Program challenges communities to identify ways to provide more efficient, affordable, and accessible transportation options for underserved populations that often face greater challenges in accessing essential services.

Continue reading “BNMC & Partners Awarded up to $8.2 Million to Improve Transportation Access.”

Case Study: Ognomy – Disrupting Sleep Medicine

Innovation-As-A-Service: Ognomy Case Study

Check out how the Ognomy sleep apnea telemedicine wp-content went from dream to wp-content MVP in 4 months through on-demand talent. Read Topcoder’s blog on the process. Watch the Ognomy video.

When Dr. Dan Rifkin had an idea to transform the sleep medicine industry using telemedicine, he knew who to call. His company, Sleep Medicine Centers of WNY was one of the first companies to locate in the Innovation Center nearly 10 years ago, and he has known Matt Enstice, BNMC CEO, for a number of years.

“I reached out to Matt to get his feedback, and he immediately jumped into action,” said Dan Rifkin, M.D., Medical Director of Sleep Medical Centers of WNY. “I wanted to transform my business, and he gave me the tools to do so.”

Matt connected Dan to Sam Marrazzo, BNMC’s Chief Innovation Officer. Sam’s niche is helping companies – any company, regardless of industry – innovate from within.

“Our goal is to connect people with ideas to a quick but thorough process using agile innovation that can create the platform for a solution that minimizes investment and risk in the marketplace,” according to Marrazzo. “We take your domain knowledge and bring connections and ideas to move your initiative along quickly. We use novel methods to solve problems and deliver solutions at a rapid pace, allowing you to prototype prior to building a final product, saving time and money. If the idea is not going to work, we want to fail fast and move along to the next idea. Through this wp-contentroach, we are changing industries by cultivating people and ideas, much like we did with Dan and sleep apnea.”

Marrazzo pulled together an innovation team from across the country, including the International Center for Studies in Creativity at Buffalo State, who helped hone in the idea and its unique business proposition, along with the UB School of Business MIS Department students and professors to help with requirements and overall implementation strategy.

He also engaged BNMC partner Topcoder, an international technology platform connecting companies to top talent. Marrazzo has worked with Topcoder for more than a decade, including bringing 200+ technology superstars to Buffalo in 2017 for its international conference. With the combination of Topcoder, UB, and BNMC’s Innovation team, we were able to develop a solution within budget and timeline that met the needs of Dan’s team.

“Within three months, we went from idea to implementation,” explained Rifkin. “It would have taken me years to get this far on my own. The connections that Sam, Matt and their team made for me are going to disrupt not only my industry, but other health disciplines as well.”

The team developed a telemedicine wp-content that incorporates practice automation and allows diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea to be done via a mobile wp-content—all in the comfort of a patient’s home. Typically, patients need to spend the night in a sleep center, hooked up to monitors in an unfamiliar room and setting. Now, with advances in diagnostic technologies, Rifkin is able to ship the equipment directly to a patient’s home and monitor them in their own environment, increasing access and ease of diagnosis.

Rifkin is now looking at other disciplines that follow similar platforms, such as cardiology, to see how they might benefit from this technology.

 

 

 

BNMC Inc., Mission:Ignite & Say Yes Buffalo Provide Computers for Students

BNMC Inc. Partners with Mission:Ignite & Say Yes Buffalo to Provide Home Computers for Buffalo Public School Students

More Support Needed to Increase Available Computers

BUFFALO (April 6, 2020) – Three Buffalo not-for-profit organizations partnered to provide desktop computers to Buffalo Public School students who would otherwise not have access to this technology at home. More than 65 families will receive computers through an initial donation of $5,000, and the partners are seeking additional donations from individuals and corporations to reach even more families. For the cost of $150, Mission:Ignite will refurbish and certify a computer, and Say Yes will distribute to their families.

The first 20 computers were distributed on April 6th at P.S. 89 Dr. Lydia T. Wright School of Excellence and P.S. 80 Highgate Heights Elementary, with additional computers delivered on April 16th to South Park High School, PR 74 and iPrep Academy.

“When I thought about education shifting to homes when the schools began closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, my mind immediately went to the technology gap,” said Sam Marrazzo, BNMC’s Chief Innovation Officer. “I knew that Mission:Ignite could help provide the hardware, so we reached out to Say Yes to see if they could help with the connection to the families. We hope to see other companies and individuals step up as well to help make sure kids have access to technology during these times.”

“We immediately agreed to help when we got Sam’s call,” said Christine Carr, Executive Director for Mission:Ignite. “Providing technology solutions for kids is our core mission. We are able to build computers relatively quickly to meet the tremendous needs of our community.”

“We were thrilled that BNMC and Mission:Ignite wp-contentroached us with this idea,” said David Rust, Executive Director of Say Yes Buffalo. “Our team has been providing basic needs to the 500+ families in Buffalo that we serve, and we know that parents are concerned that their kids will fall behind in school without access to the right technology.”

Say Yes Buffalo Family Support Specialists and BPS Principals will work to determine families with the highest need to distribute the laptops. The first 20 computers were distributed this morning.

For more information about how you can get involved with this initiative, including donate online, visit http://techforkids.716innovations.com or contact Sam Marrazzo at smarrazzo@bnmc-old.local.

Partners

Mission: Ignite, Buffalo’s source for affordable technology and refurbished computers; the BNMC, Inc., an organization focused on furthering economic growth, igniting urban revitalization, and building a strong thriving community; and Say Yes Buffalo, dedicated to strengthening the Western New York economy by investing in the education of Buffalo’s future workforce.

 

 

UB and St. John Baptist Panel Releases Report on Creation of Economic Opportunities for Residents

UB and St. John Baptist panel releases report on creation of economic opportunities for residents of neighborhoods bordering Buffalo’s Medical Campus

UB to begin immediate implementation of panel’s recommendations

The Economic Opportunity Panel (EOP), wp-contentointed by the University at Buffalo (UB) and St. John Baptist Fruit Belt Community Development Corp. to assess how the opportunities created by the sale of the McCarley Gardens housing complex could be more accessible to the residents of McCarley Gardens and the city’s Fruit Belt, released its report today.

Last week, the panel presented its report to UB President Satish K. Tripathi and Minister Michael Chapman, consultant/CEO, St. John Baptist Fruit Belt Community Development Corp.  A copy of the report is available here (http://tinyurl.com/UB-EOP-Report).

Created in 2011 as a contingency of the future sale of the McCarley Gardens housing project to UB, the EOP, in preparing its report, met with nearly 70 community and business leaders over the past year and a half. More broadly, the panel considered how UB’s growing presence on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC), and the growth of the BNMC itself, could benefit neighboring communities.

An internal working group of UB and the church, the EOP consisted of six members with expertise in business services and procurement, job training and workforce development, minority hiring and business ventures, and leadership development.

While acknowledging that UB already meets or exceeds state-mandated targets for minority and women employment and business participation on all of its downtown Buffalo construction projects, the EOP report identified six ways the university could do more to “make economic opportunities more accessible to those in our community who have had too few such opportunities.”

The panel’s recommendations build upon the success of projects and initiatives already underway at UB to increase community access to jobs and business opportunities created by UB’s expansion in downtown Buffalo.

The panel recommended that UB:

  • Illuminate paths to good permanent jobs at the university by strengthening connections between residents and systems of education, job training, recruitment and placement that already exist.
  • Help minority- and women-owned firms – especially those based in the immediate neighborhood – form, grow and develop their businesses by securing business opportunities with UB for a wide range of routinely purchased goods and services, and other ways.
  • Engage residents of McCarley Gardens and adjacent communities in planning for UB’s downtown expansion, especially to protect and enhance the values of their properties and neighborhood as UB continues to invest.
  • Expand two-way communication between the university and the community that will be timely, transparent, participatory and operating at multiple levels.
  • Assign responsibility and create accountability for ongoing implementation of these recommendations to (1) a member of UB’s senior leadership and (2) to the UB 2020 Opportunities Advisory Council (OAC) or another wp-contentropriate entity, with a charge to facilitate the role of UB and its medical campus partners in promoting economic development in the community.
  • Facilitate collaborations in the implementation of these recommendations with UB partner institutions Kaleida Health and Roswell Park Cancer Institute, as well as Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus Inc.

Tripathi and Chapman thanked the EOP for its work and said that steps will be taken to implement the panel’s recommendations. “The EOP’s report marks the beginning of a process of community engagement, not the end,” Tripathi said.  “The university very much wp-contentreciates the panel’s efforts on behalf of UB, the church and the community.”

“We give thanks to God for this Biblically based social justice model,” Chapman said.  “The EOP has done an excellent job and we congratulate and thank them for their service on the panel and for representation of St John Baptist Church and its affiliate corporations and community at large.”

Chapman continued, “Our project is a national model; it’s the most comprehensive collaborative economic urban workforce development model.  It is our responsibility to turn the panel research into practical wp-contentlication. We expect to create employment opportunities and minority participation through SJBC Corporation and SJB Business Corporation for various positions in construction, automotive, welding, robotics, security, as well as administrative and health services.

“St John and its affiliate corporations have potentially $60 million in projects slated over the next seven years, which will provide training and employment opportunities to community residents in addition to what the University at Buffalo commits.”

Tripathi said UB will take immediate steps to implement the EOP recommendations.  Specifically, the university will:

  • Create a “jobs portal” in UB’s Downtown Gateway building on Goodell Street, where community members can learn about and wp-contently for UB jobs.  The university will work with BNMC partner institutions to expand this resource to include job opportunities at other BNMC institutions.
  • Partner with the BNMC to develop and provide career workshops, education and training opportunities for residents.  These programs will be tied to new and existing programs within UB’s Economic Opportunity Center, local agencies and area colleges to prepare residents for employment.
  • Hire a director of supplier diversity and hold supplier workshops describing and clarifying ways local minority- and women-owned companies can do business with the university.
  • Work with BNMC partners to promote the use of MWBE (minority- and women-owned business enterprise) vendors in new and existing buildings.
  • Open and staff a UB community relations office in UB’s Downtown Gateway Building to serve as a “front door” to the university for residents.  The university will create a “co-laboratory” space within the building where community members can interact with the university and hold meetings and public forums.
  • Continue to engage residents through regular community forums to discuss UB’s plans for growth on the BNMC and reuse of McCarley Gardens, and offer specific sessions on job opportunities, parking and transportation, health impacts and other topics of interest to the community.
  • Offer additional leadership training programs to residents who wish to be active in shaping the future of their community and their interactions with UB and BNMC.
  • Publish a monthly community newsletter and increase its availability throughout the neighborhood.
  • Assign responsibility for implementing EOP recommendations to a senior staff person at the university.

With the submittal of its report, the EOP will disband.  The UB 2020 Opportunities Advisory Council will serve as a primary economic development liaison between the university, the community and BNMC partners.  The council, established in 2010, will work with the university and community to ensure that the EOP’s recommendations are addressed, and will pursue additional ways UB and BNMC partner institutions can open up new economic opportunities to community residents.

Members of the  UB 2020 Opportunities Advisory Council include chairperson June W. Hoeflich, member, UB Council; Michael Badger, pastor, Bethesda World Harvest International Church; Ravinder Bansal, chairman and CEO, AirSep Corp.; Robert Bragg, vice president, decision support and campus development, Kaleida Health; Deanna Alterio Brennen, president and CEO, Niagara USA Chamber of Commerce; Matt Enstice, executive director, Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus; Thomas A. Fentner, senior vice president, human resources and administrative services, HealthNow New York Inc.; Vicki Garcia, vice president, human resources management, Roswell Park Cancer Institute; Laura Hubbard, vice president for finance and administration, UB.

Also, Anthony Johnson, CEO, Empire Genomics; Mary Lou Klee, director of corporate employment and corporate human resources, Kaleida Health;  Michael Pietkiewicz, assistant vice president of government and community relations, UB; Michael Sexton, general counsel and chief institute operations officer, Roswell Park Cancer Institute; Brian C. Springer, executive vice president, Roswell Park Cancer Institute; and Paul E. Tesluk, Donald S. Carmichael Professor of Organization and Human Resources, UB School of Management.

Members of the EOP included Dennis Black, vice president for university life and services, UB; Colleen W. Cummings, former executive director, Buffalo Employment and Training Center; Hoeflich; Brenda W. McDuffie, president and CEO, Buffalo Urban League; Hon. James A.W. McLeod, Buffalo City Court judge; and Tesluk.

John DellaContrada (UB); dellacon@buffalo.edu; 716.645.4601

New UB Medical School Design Revealed


The University at Buffalo (UB) unveiled the HOK design for the new School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences building to be constructed atop the NFTA Allen/Medical Campus station on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.

Medical-School-Design-1Since winning the international design competition for the medical school concepts last year, HOK has worked closely with UB officials, the SUNY Construction Fund and community groups to develop the design best suited to the needs of the medical school while strengthening connections with the surrounding community. The design process is still underway, but is expected to be finalized within the next few months. The groundbreaking for the 7-story, more than 500,000-square-foot school is scheduled for the fall of 2013. The medical school will be one of the largest buildings constructed recently in the region when it officially opens in 2016.

Expected to bring an additional 2,000 faculty, staff and students to the Medical Campus, the steel-framed, state-of-the-art facility will feature a 6-story, light-filled glass atrium. The building’s façade will be clad with a high-performance terra cotta rainscreen and a glass curtain wall system that will bring daylight deep into the building. A convenient facility amenity will include bridges connecting to the two L-shaped buildings, the soon-to-be-built John R. Oishei Children's Hospital and Conventus medical office building.

Medical-School-Sidebar-1Serving as the building’s main interior “avenue,” there will be an atrium that will provide naturally illuminated by skylights and two glass walls, one along Washington Street and the other toward Allen Street.

Floor layout:

  • Floors 1 & 2: Multipurpose educational and community spaces for medical school and community outreach programs, such as the UB mini-medical school and other public health initiatives. The goal is to make the building’s public spaces highly accessible.
  • Floors 3, 4 & 5: Core research facilities as well as wp-contentroximately 150,000-square-foot of state-of-the art, easily configurable research laboratories for faculty in the basic sciences.
  • Floor 6: Advanced and specialized medical education facilities in the U.S., such as an expanded patient care simulation center, which will include the Behling Simulation Center, currently located on UB’s South Campus.
  • Floor 7: Gross anatomy facilities.

The medical school’s administrative offices and academic departments will be located on floors 3-7. It will also house a surgical simulation center where medical students can conduct surgeries in a simulated operating room. A complementary robotic surgery simulation center will train students and physicians in the latest remotely controlled robotic surgery technologies.

Aligning with key objectives from the UB 2020 strategic plan, the medical school will help create of a world-class medical school, increase recruitment of outstanding scientists, physician-scientists and clinicians to the university and transform the region into a major destination for innovative medical care and research.

“The new design allows us to grow our class size from 140 to 180, educating more physicians, many of whom will practice in the region,” said Michael E. Cain, MD, vice president for health sciences at UB and dean of the medical school.  “It allows UB to hire more talented faculty, bringing to this community much-needed clinical services and medical training programs.”

Medical-School-Sidebar-2The new design also provides the most efficient layout for state-of-the-art medical education and research as it looks to receive LEED gold certification. A pedestrian passageway will extend through the building between Main and Washington Streets, leading to the Allen Street Western Gateway. To further promote alternative transportation modes, the passageway is deliberately aligned with a proposed Allen Street pedestrian extension from Washington to Michigan Streets, which will feature a bike share facility.

Cain also stated that “faculty conducting scientific and translational research will be in close proximity to faculty performing clinical care in the hospitals” and that the new design will establish “a complete continuum from discovery to patient care on one campus and in modern facilities expressly designed to efficiently maximize the medical school’s primary missions of education, clinical service and research.”

With the medical school so close to major teaching hospitals like Kaleida Health's Buffalo General Medical Center and Roswell Park Cancer Institute and research facilities like the Clinical Translational Research Center, UB will be made into a strong academic and health care contender, much like Cleveland Clinic and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

For UB's downtown campus, the medical school will help create a vibrant, urban, mixed-use district seamlessly connected to the surrounding Allentown and Fruit Belt neighborhoods and other downtown communities. The $375 million medical school is partly funded by the NYSUNY 2020 legislation and private donations.

Read coverage about the medical school design unveiling below:

New UB Medical School is Designed to be an Integral Part of its Community

UB Unveils Med School Design (More Images)

UB Unveils New Downtown Medical Facility Design (With Photos)

UB Unveils School of Medicine Design

UB Unveils Design for Downtown Medical School: Building to be “Gateway”

UB Offers Images of Future Medical School

*Pictures retrieved from the University at Buffalo/HOK

*YouTube video created by the University at Buffalo

Roswell Park Scientists Advance Findings About Novel, Low-Toxicity Anticancer Agent

New FL118 formulation may prove effective against colon, head/neck, mesothelioma, ovarian and pancreatic cancers

Researchers at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) have found that a new formulation of a promising anticancer agent, the small chemical molecule FL118, is even more effective in controlling two types of cancer than a version reported in PLOS ONE six months earlier proved to be. Additional evidence also suggests that the agent may successfully treat other solid tumors as well.

In their previous research, a team led by Fengzhi Li, PhD, Associate Professor of Oncology in RPCI’s Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, demonstrated that FL118 eliminated human colon and head-and-neck tumors in animal models without relapse but was limited in that it could be delivered only by intraperitoneal (IP) administration. This new study, to be published in the April 8 issue of the American Journal of Translational Research, compares the earlier formulation of the agent to a new version that can also be administered intravenously, translating to much wider potential clinical wp-contentlication.

Comparing the antitumor efficacy and therapeutic index, or relative toxicity, of FL118 in its new intravenous (IV) formulation with the earlier form, the researchers found that maximum tolerated dose increased three- to seven-fold, depending on dosing schedule. While the original formulation contained Tween 80 or polysorbate 80, a solvent commonly included in drug formulations, the agent in its new composition is free of Tween 80, resulting in significantly lower toxicity.

FL118 is a targeted therapy that selectively inhibits the expression of four major cancer-survival gene products: survivin, Mcl-1, XIAP and/or cIAP2. While both studies tested the agent’s effectiveness against models of head-and-neck and colon tumors, other research from Dr. Li’s lab suggests that mesothelioma, ovarian and pancreatic cancers, and potentially other solid tumors, may also be good targets for treatment with FL118.

“This work represents a significant move forward,” notes Dr. Li, senior author on the study. “We’re targeting four of the most resilient and pervasive cancer survival mechanisms, and because the findings from preclinical testing have been so striking, we’re anxious to see FL118 tested in the clinical setting.”

Xiang Ling, MD, PhD, a senior scientist in RPCI’s Department of Pharmacology & Therapeutics, is co-author of the paper, “An intravenous (i.v.) route-compatible formulation of FL118, a survivin, Mcl-1, XIAP, and cIAP2 selective inhibitor, improves FL118 antitumor efficacy and therapeutic index (TI).” The study was e-published today and is available at http://goo.gl/y0oZy.

The work was supported in part by grants from the U.S. Department of Defense (PC110408), Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation and Roswell Park Alliance Foundation, and by shared resources supported by the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Center Support Grant to RPCI (P30CA016056).

Annie Deck-Miller, RPCI Senior Media Relations Manager; annie.deck-miller@roswellpark.org; 716.845.859

Olmsted Center for Sight Names New President and CEO

Tammy Owen_Olmsted Center for SightThe Olmsted Center for Sight Board of Directors elected Tammy Owen as the organization’s new president and chief executive officer.
Olmsted’s search committee underwent a national search for the successor of former president and chief executive officer, Ron Maier, after he retired in September 2012.  There were 50 candidates being considered for the position. The seven-member search committee was able to narrow it down to three finalists. With over 20 years of experience working in health care operations, Owen was considered to be a great fit for the position.

Patricia Clabeaux, chairperson of Olmsted Center’s Board of Directors stated that “[Owen’s] strong background in health care management, with a special focus on service delivery, and a team-oriented, results-driven leadership style will serve us well.”

Throughout her 22 year tenure, Owen has held many leadership positions including vice president, ambulatory and rehabilitation services; vice president, strategic planning and network development; vice president, physician services; president, DeGraff Memorial Hospital; and president, Millard Fillmore Gates Hospital. In her most recent position, Owen served as the chief operating officer of the Buffalo General Medical Center/Gates Vascular Institute.

A Boston native, Owen received her Bachelor of Science degree in physical education/athletic training  and her Master of Science degree in sports medicine/education from Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts. She went on to receive both her Bachelor of Science degree in physical therapy, and her MBA  from the University at Buffalo.

She serves on numerous boards, has taught as an adjunct faculty member at both the University at Buffalo and Daemen College, and has been named in Buffalo Business First’s 2012  Top 50 Healthcare Executives and Women of Influence lists.

Owen will begin her tenure in April 2013, continuing the innovative provision of services for blind, visually impaired and physically disabled Western New Yorkers.

 

First Niagara Gives UB Land for Medical School

UB Acquires the Last of 3 Properties to Move Forward with Medical School Construction

First Niagara Financial Group Inc. has given the University at Buffalo (UB) a .85 acre of land to be incorporated into the UB School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences site. The parcel of land at 973 Main Street is where a current First Niagara bank branch is located.

Although the land is considered a donation, in exchange for $1 First Niagara offered the land, worth wp-contentroximately $2 million, to assist UB in its quest to acquire the third property necessary for the building of the medical school.

Recognizing the importance of the land in UB's plan for the medical school, First Niagara's interim president and chief executive officer, Gary Crosby, stated that “We are committed to doing great things in our community and we are proud to collaborate with UB in order to provide the final piece of the puzzle for the new medical school to move forward.” He also stated that First Niagara is highly supportive of the region's efforts to continue being a recognized leader in life sciences, innovation and research.

Satish K. Tripathi, UB's president, said that “With [this most recent] acquisition, UB can move ahead with its plans for the new medical school, which will help to dramatically improve health care and medical education in our region while providing a significant boost to the local economy.”

UB Med School HOK2The $375 million, 520,000-square-foot medical school will be located on the corner at Main and High Streets.

With high expectations to improve health care throughout Western New York and to attract patients from other areas, the move of the medical school will also contribute to the growing world-class Medical Campus and its vision to attract the best and the brightest. The medical school will be able to graduate more physicians who will most likely stay and practice in the area. Medical school students will have the opportunity to receive a great and invaluable educational experience while near facilities like the John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital, Buffalo General Medical Center, Gates Vascular Institute, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, the UB Clinical and Translational Research Center and others.

“UB will attract the most promising medical students and world-class faculty,” said Michael E. Cain, MD, UB vice president for health sciences and dean of the medical school. “The prospect of a brand new, 21st century medical school next to teaching hospitals and state-of-the-art research laboratories in downtown Buffalo is helping UB to recruit top physicians and scientists, some of whom are already here.”

UB will add several new clinical service areas within the new medical school, providing specialty care and health services not currently offered in the region. Faculty will pursue cutting-edge research and collaborations with member institutions will lead to advanced care for patients.

On October 1st, First Niagara will relinquish the property to UB, later opening a new branch on the BNMC.  Until the new branch opens, a temporary branch will be located at 1031 Main Street.

The groundbreaking for the new building is set for September and construction is expected to be completed in 2016.

*Design rendering by HOK , a global design, architecture, engineering and planning firm.

Read more about the this announcement below:

First Niagara Donating Downtown Land for UB Medical School

Land Donation Leads to First Niagara Branch Shuffle

First Niagara Provides Land for New UB Medical School Project

First Niagara Donates Land for New UB Med School

First Niagara Giving UB Main Street Land for $1

More UB Medical School Students Choose Buffalo for Their Residencies

Fifty percent more students in the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences have chosen a UB residency program this year than last year, according to statistics compiled on the graduates at Match Day 2013 held March 15.
Match Day is the day when medical school students around the country find out where they will do their postgraduate training, called a residency, which lasts from three to seven years, depending on the specialty chosen.

Thirty-eight out of the 150 students who make up the Class of 2013 have chosen to stay in Buffalo and do their residencies at UB, up from 24 in 2012, according to Roseanne C. Berger, MD, senior associate dean for graduate medical education.

“This is a vote of confidence in UB’s residency programs,” says Berger. “We do know that the residents have a tendency to remain in the areas where they train, so many will start their careers here, providing quality health care for our region.”

“We’re excited to see this,” agrees David A. Milling, MD, senior associate dean for student and academic affairs in the UB medical school.  “We have recruited so many new faculty and the quality of our training programs continues to improve, so students are more receptive, not only staying in Buffalo for postgraduate training, but some who leave also will return once their training is complete. The growth of the Buffalo Niagara Medical campus, including the forthcoming medical school downtown, is also attracting young physicians here.”

Seventy-three percent of the UB Class of 2013 are New York State residents. A total of 75 students, half of the class of 2013, will stay in New York State to do their training.

Ellen Goldbaum (UB); goldbaum@buffalo.edu; 716.645.4605

UB Goes to Great Lengths to Recruit Top Medical Talent to Buffalo – Buffalo News Story

Buffalo News)
(Photo from The Buffalo News)

Published: 03/3/2013, 11:54 PM Updated: 03/3/2013, 11:54 PM

Buffalo News Article: The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus – and the opportunity for growth it promises – is helping UB attract some of the country’s top doctors to its medical school faculty.

BY: Jay Rey /Buffalo News Staff Reporter

Recruiting top doctors and medical researchers to Buffalo is not unlike the Bills or Sabres going after blue-chip free agents.

Buffalo may not be high on their list of destinations – or on their list at all – when bigger, warmer or more lucrative markets are out there.

Buffalo? thought Dr. Andrew Talal.

Dr. Gil Wolfe was hesitant, too.

And Dr. John Tomaszewski was sure Buffalo wasn’t for him, even before he stepped off the plane.

That’s part of the recruiting process the University at Buffalo is going through right now as it grows its School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Over the next three years, UB plans to hire more than 100 full-time medical faculty members in preparation for the 2016 opening of its new medical school, which will serve as a linchpin for an emerging Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.

 

But luring smart, high-priced medical talent to the region isn’t as impossible as you might think.

If you can get them to visit – that’s the key – Buffalo can convince them it is a city on the rise and they can be a part of building something special.

“People want to be in a place that’s moving forward with a vision,” said UB President Satish Tripathi. “The way I feel is, if we are able to clearly state our vision and provide them the resources to succeed, people will come.”

“You got to get them on the airplane,” said Dr. Anne Curtis, chairwoman of the department of medicine at UB, who was recruited a few years ago. “Get them on the airplane and get them here, and then we can do OK.”

That’s why Talal, Wolfe and Tomaszewski eventually came around to Buffalo, with dozens more expected to follow.

“I began to understand that there really is a new day in town,” said Tomaszewski, who came from Philadelphia more than a year ago.

The added faculty will allow UB to increase enrollment at the medical school, from which the region gets many of its future physicians.

In addition, these newly hired doctors – who will set up practices and labs and hold positions at area hospitals – will bring some needed depth and breadth to Buffalo’s medical community, as UB targets specialists in areas where the region has a shortage.

It’s helping set the stage for a better, 21st-century health care system, where people from the region can be treated for most any condition by local doctors, said Michael Cain, vice president of health sciences and dean of the medical school.

And in a way, it serves as a reminder that Buffalo really is making progress, especially when the community’s Rust Belt image is seen through the fresh eyes of these newcomers.

“We fell in love with the city,” said Dr. Anthony Martinez, an associate professor of medicine, who moved to Buffalo from San Diego in December. “It just feels like there’s something going on here. It’s hard to describe, it’s just something you feel.”

But first, you have to get them to Buffalo.

Seeing the potential

Actually, Cain said, it hasn’t been that difficult.

“In all the recruiting I’ve done in the past six years, I’ve had no one turn us down because it was Buffalo,” Cain said.

In fact, UB landed its top choice for each of the 10 leadership positions recently filled for the medical school, Cain said.

They see the potential in Buffalo.

UB and Kaleida Health opened a state-of-the-art research building last year on Ellicott Street.

An 11-story addition to Roswell Park Cancer Institute breaks ground this year.

A new Women & Children’s Hospital is expected to open in 2016 – as is UB’s $375 million medical school.

“If you come here,” Cain tells the recruits, “you’re going to be part of a growing, expanding academic health center, and after four or five years, you will feel that you have contributed to making something better.”

It’s a vision that attracted Curtis, who came to UB in 2010 from the University of South Florida in Tampa, where she was chief of cardiology.

“People who are builders get excited about that,” Curtis said. “They see an opportunity to put their mark on something.”

Buffalo also caught the attention of Dr. Vanessa Barnabei, who had other offers but came to UB last fall from the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, where she was director of obstetrics and gynecology.

“When I came here, I was very impressed by the opportunity for growth that’s going on, that’s being planned and is actually going to hwp-contenten,” Barnabei said. “You never know sometimes. People make these grand plans. But here, it really does look like it’s going to move forward.”

UB has been hiring for the medical school the past few years to fill vacancies and replace retired professors. Currently, the medical school has 720 full-time faculty members.

But the university wants to increase that number to as many as 850 over the next three years, as the need to train more physicians grows around the U.S.

A combination of resources – including philanthropy and money raised from state tuition increases – will be used to finance the school’s growth.

It’s that commitment of funds to build a better medical program at UB that helped lure Wolfe, who arrived at the end of 2011. He was recruited from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas to head the department of neurology at UB.

“This was not the first chair opportunity I was offered,” Wolfe said, “but looking back and hearing what hwp-contentened in those other situations, I’m glad I’m here. The level of state support – and even community support – doesn’t match what I’ve experienced here.”

That’s not to say the initial reaction to Buffalo is always enthusiastic.

Intriguing interview

Tomaszewski was recruited from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

As he arrived in Buffalo for his first interview, the Philadelphia native remembers looking out the window of the plane and thinking: “I am not coming to Buffalo.”

But Tomaszewski’s interview was intriguing. It turned into another visit, then another. And during every conversation, another dimension he found engaging was revealed. He became chairman of the department of pathology and anatomical sciences at UB in the fall of 2011.

“Buffalo has a whole bunch of cards assembled to be a first-rate, modern health care system in the model that’s going to be successful going forward,” he said.

Talal, who was recruited from Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, had a similar reaction when he received an email from the search firm.

“Who wants to go to Buffalo?” Talal thought to himself.

He promptly deleted the email.

But after being asked to speak in Buffalo, Talal learned more about what was going on at the university and the emerging medical campus. His opinion was changing.

When Talal returned to Manhattan, he reached out to the search firm. It took his daughter getting admitted to City Honors School and his wife – who is also a professor – to be recruited by UB, but Talal eventually joined the university in September as chief of the division of gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition.

“Buffalo is an interesting community in the sense you have a lot of very top-notch things, but they haven’t been highly publicized,” Talal said. “There’s a lot more here than the city is given credit for.”

Now the recruited have become the recruiters.

A rare opportunity

The doctors acknowledge that Buffalo can be a tough market to recruit.

It’s just enough out of the way and close enough to major metropolitan areas, where top talent would rather head, Barnabei said.

But they also believe the medical growth planned for Buffalo is a rare opportunity for faculty, especially at a time when schools around the country are trying to cut costs.

“A lot of academic medical centers in 2013 are not growing,” Curtis said. “They see health care changing. They don’t see a need for more people. They’re treading water. Their staffs are full.”

“There are good people coming out of training who want an academic career but are finding the opportunities are somewhat [more] limited than in the past,” Curtis said.

“Times are tight,” added Tomaszewski. “California is a good example. Because of its finances, it really had to downsize its state university system, so there’s a lot of faculty on the market.”

And once the prospects see Buffalo, they understand the wp-contenteal.

“I enjoy Buffalo,” Wolfe said. “I’ve become a big booster for the city. I have to be, but I can do it in a sincere fashion. There are great recreational opportunities. The arts are excellent. The restaurant scene holds its own very well in comparison to even larger cities. And the cost of living, from a real-estate standpoint, is a big bonus.”

Barnabei and Tomaszewski were struck by the friendliness of the community. He recalled moving into his office – arms full, fumbling with his access card – when a woman saw him from the third floor of the building and came down to open the door for him.

“If you keep an open mind enough to give it a chance, it’s the kind of place that the more you look the more you find,” Martinez said. “If you just give it a chance, the more it gets under your skin and grabs you.”

When Talal, his former mentor, recruited Martinez to Buffalo from the University of California, San Diego, Martinez and his wife rented a place in Elmwood Village for a week to determine if Buffalo would suit them.

Martinez, a native of Providence, R.I., and a huge hockey fan, immediately got Buffalo. He saw how the cold weather and tough economy shaped this community for the good.

“I’ve never been in a place that has such a strong sense of community. That seeps into the people and permeates out,” Martinez said. “It’s a great fit for my family and a great fit for me.”

email: jrey@buffnews.com

Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences Honors Researchers Making a Difference

A group of innovative and influential tycoons came together to form the Breakthrough Prize in Life Sciences, recognizing individuals who have made significant contributions in the life sciences field. The most lucrative prize offered for any academic achievement in the world, the first group to receive the annual Breakthrough Prize included 11 recipients, all scientists, in February. The awardees received $3 million and recognition for their “excellence in research aimed at curing intractable diseases and extending human life.”
Lauretes included:

  • Cornelia I. Bargmann – For the genetics of neural circuits and behavior, and synaptic guidepost molecules.
  • David Botstein – For linkage mwp-contenting of Mendelian disease in humans using DNA polymorphisms.
  • Lewis C. Cantley – For the discovery of PI 3-Kinase and its role in cancer metabolism.
  • Hans Clevers – For describing the role of Wnt signaling in tissue stem cells and cancer.
  • Napoleone Ferrara – For discoveries in the mechanisms of angiogenesis that led to therapies for cancer and eye diseases.
  • Titia de Lange – For research on telomeres, illuminating how they protect chromosome ends and their role in genome instability in cancer.
  • Eric S. Lander – For the discovery of general principles for identifying human disease genes, and enabling their wp-contentlication to medicine through the creation and analysis of genetic, physical and sequence maps of the human genome.
  • Charles L. Sawyers – For cancer genes and targeted therapy.
  • Bert Vogelstein – For cancer genomics and tumor suppressor genes.
  • Robert A. Weinberg – For characterization of human cancer genes.
  • Shinya Yamanaka – For induced pluripotent stem cells.

Russian venture capitalist and entrepreneur, Yuri Milner, established the prize along with additional founding sponsors Sergey Brin, Priscilla Chan, Anne Wojcicki and Mark Zuckerberg. All accomplished Internet and business gurus in their own right, the group has already guaranteed that the prize be presented for the next 5 years.

Life sciences companies including those involved with biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and biomedicine are coming up with innovative and effective ways to treat different types of cancer. Academic and health care institutions are leading research efforts to use genomics to identify personalized medicine. With all of the developments taking place on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus alone, it is easy to understand why it is important to recognize the individuals making life-enhancing discoveries. The Prize is public validation that the work being done in labs, under the microscopes, in the manufacturing companies and during simulations is highly valued and respected.

“I believe this new prize will shine a light on the extraordinary achievements of the outstanding minds in the field of life sciences, enhance medical innovation, and ultimately become a platform for recognizing future discoveries,” said Art Levinson. In addition to his current position as Chairman of both the Apple Inc. and Genentech Boards, Levinson will serve as the Chairman of the Board of the Breakthrough Prize Foundation.

Bound to spark an influx of submissions for consideration since any third party can nominate a researcher or scientist for the Prize, the major qualification is that it must recognize a major achievement, with special attention to recent developments. A person can win the Prize any number of times and there are no age requirements. The Prize can also be shared amongst a group of people.

In realizing that the next generations will lead the development of the next big breakthrough, the Prize is a recognition well-deserved for those whose jobs may not be as glamorous or well-known. It will serve as one more way to shed light on how impactful and relevant scientists and researchers are and will open the door for more students to take interest in pursuing those career paths.

Roswell Park in Top 6% of U.S. Centers for Blood and Marrow Transplant

RPCI’s BMT patient results superior to expected outcomes

For the third consecutive year, outcomes for patients receiving blood and marrow transplants through the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) are among the best in the nation. The latest report compiled by the Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) puts RPCI in the top 6% of U.S. centers performing allogeneic blood and marrow transplants, based on patient survival rates.

Allogeneic blood and marrow transplantation (BMT) involves infusion of bone marrow or blood cells from a donor, and is commonly used to treat many blood cancers, including some forms of leukemia, multiple myeloma and lymphoma. The CIBMTR (website: http://www.cibmtr.org) is an international research organization that collects and publishes data from centers that perform blood and marrow transplants. Its 2012 report includes outcomes data for 169 U.S. centers. The report, which analyzed related and unrelated donor BMTs performed between 2008 and 2010, places RPCI among 10 centers whose one-year survival results were above what could be expected based on the level of acuity or risk represented among the transplanted population.

The RPCI population was once again assigned to the highest risk category, indicating that the Institute’s BMT cases during the period covered were among the most complicated. Factors such as degree of tissue match/mismatch between donor and recipient and the type of transplant being performed can add risk to these already-complex procedures.

“These outcomes, which have been consistently high for the last three years, are a direct product of the multidisciplinary interaction on which our care is based,” noted Theresa Hahn, PhD, an Associate Professor of Oncology at RPCI and Director of Quality Assurance for the Blood and Marrow Transplant Program. “Our outstanding clinical team has put every effort into constantly improving the experiences of our patients, and that work involves many of Roswell Park’s teams, including our Department of Medicine clinicians, nursing staff, case management, our blood cell apheresis and processing lab, the departments of Laboratory Medicine, Pathology, Radiation Medicine, Radiology and Psychosocial Oncology, our clinical pharmacy staff, physical and occupational therapists, dieticians and housekeeping staff.”

Annie Deck-Miller, RPCI Senior Media Relations Manager; annie.deck-miller@roswellpark.org; 716-845-8593

Roswell Park Study Finds Substantial Use of E-Cigarettes by Smokers

Nearly 80% of smokers who use electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, believe the devices are less harmful than traditional cigarettes, according to a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and authored by a team of scientists led by Richard O’Connor, PhD, Associate Professor of Oncology and Director of the Tobacco Research Laboratory at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI).
“This study offers a snapshot in time on the use of e-cigarettes from mid-2010 to mid-2011 and examines awareness, use and product-associated beliefs among current and former cigarette smokers in the United States, Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom,” said Dr. O’Connor.

Nearly 6,000 adult smokers from the four largest English-speaking countries participated in the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Four Country Survey. Study results include:

  • Overall, 46.6% of those surveyed were aware of e-cigarettes (US: 73%, UK: 54%, Canada: 40%, Australia: 20%)
  • Younger, non-minority, heavy smokers with higher incomes were more likely to be aware of e-cigarettes.
  • Younger, non-daily smokers and those who believe e-cigarettes to be less harmful than traditional cigarettes were four times more likely to try e-cigarettes.
  • E-cigarette use was higher among non-daily smokers and those who smoke more than 20 cigarettes a day.
  • 79.8% of smokers believe using e-cigarettes is less harmful than smoking traditional cigarettes.
  • 85% of current e-cigarette users indicate that they are using the devices as a tool to help them quit smoking, yet only 11% had successfully stopped smoking.

“This study provides valuable insights into the use and attitudes surrounding e-cigarettes among smokers,” adds Dr. O’Connor. “However, questions remain regarding the impact of these devices in nonsmokers, such as what potential exists to induce nicotine addiction in non-smokers and/or maintain addiction in current smokers who might otherwise stop smoking.”

Regarding future steps, the researchers suggest that the net impact of e-cigarettes on public health be examined. If evidence shows that e-cigarettes reduce the number of cigarette smokers and do not attract use among nonsmokers, they note, then the net public health effect is likely to be positive.

The study, “Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems International Tobacco Control Four-Country Survey,” will be published online today at http://www.ajpmonline.org.

Annie Deck-Miller, RPCI Senior Media Relations Manager; annie.deck-miller@roswellpark.org; 716-845-8593

 

Fisher-Price & Mattel Donate $3M to New Oishei Children's Hospital

Inside Kaleida Health‘s John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital will be the Fisher-Price & Mattel Family & Child Resource Center thanks to a $3 million donation to The Children’s Hospital of Buffalo Foundation from the local toy company. The donation secured naming and construction rights by Fisher-Price, Inc. and Mattel, Inc. for the Center which will be located on the 5th floor of the new hospital.
fisherpricecenter_0In addition to interaction with and support from the Child Life and Stone’s Buddies staff, patients and families will have access to the 6,000-square-foot respite area and its designated sections. There will be areas for meditation, a chapel, family consultation rooms, and an area for computers and video games. Fisher-Price and Mattel will incorporate toy storage compartments within the play areas on each of the hospital floors, and will include branded animal sculptures within the outdoor garden.

The Center is scheduled to open in 2016 with the new hospital. Groundbreaking for the new Children’s Hospital site on the corner of Ellicott and High Streets, across from the Buffalo General Medical Center, is set to begin this spring.

Read coverage about the donation below:

Toy Makers Pledge $3 Million for Children’s Hospital Family Center

Fisher-Price, Mattel Pledge $3 Million for New Children’s Hospital

Fisher-Price, Mattel Give $3M for Children’s Hospital Project

Roswell Park's Center for Personalized Medicine

center-personalized-medicine-press-conference.2013-01-30-35Roswell Park Cancer Institute‘s (RPCI) new 5,000-square-foot facility, the Center for Personalized Medicine (CPM), will provide individualized therapies for patients through genetic code sequencing (an analysis of genomes – the entire inherited genetic makeup of humans). Using state-of-the-art, next-generation technology, advanced research has led to the identification of unique genetic characteristics that will help determine effective and custom treatments for patients with certain diseases. Utilizing high-throughput screening for drug discovery, personal gene sequence machines and a 1,600-processor supercomputing cluster, the RPCI team will efficiently be able analyze individual genome data.
Located within RPCI’s Center for Genetics & Pharmacology, the Center will also act as a resource for scientists and medical providers to use for national clinical care wp-contentlication. In addition to having a mobile unit, the CPM is the first regional resource for next-generation gene sequencing to have met federal Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) requirements.

At the end of  last year, RPCI was awarded a $5.1 million grant to begin the pilot phase of the genome project from Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council, established to promote regional economic development. Since then, RPCI has garnered an additional $18.5 million in investments to support the project. From RPCI, $16 million has been invested in equipment and infrastructure, and Computer Task Group (CTG), a Buffalo-based national leader in healthcare IT, has committed to $2.5 million. As a local and nearby partner, CTG will provide its healthcare and bioinformatics expertise to deliver personalized medicine quickly and cost-effectively. The University at Buffalo, IMMCO Diagnostics and Western New York Urology Associates LLC are additional supporters of the project.

Candace Johnson, PhD, Deputy Director of the CPM stated that “We now have the ability to do robust, ‘next-generation’ gene sequencing on blood and tissue samples, with tremendous possibilities in terms of what we can learn diagnostically, prognostically, therapeutically.” Johnson also stated that personalized medicine is the future, not just for oncology patients but for treatments across all diseases.

The CPM is a prime example of the type of support that Cuomo’s Council looks to provide for organizations throughout the region to capitalize on resources and developments that will support the local economy by creating more jobs and economic growth. Recognizing the growth hwp-contentening on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and throughout the region, Cuomo stated that “Western New York has a thriving health and life sciences industry cluster, which the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council and Roswell Park Cancer Institute recognized. Through the Regional Council process, they created a custom-tailored plan to take advantage of this opportunity, which will rebuild the regional economy.”

center-personalized-medicine-press-conference-2013-01-30-34RPCI’s President and CEO, Dr. Donald Trump captured the significance of the Center’s presence. He stated that “The doors are wide open in terms of the opportunities for entrepreneurship and technology transfer that will flow from [the Center].” The CPM team, partners and supporters increase RPCI’s menu of services, giving the institution the opportunity to contend with other small circle healthcare organizations providing similar medical services.

Immediately on the agenda, the CPM will undertake its first 3 sequencing projects, clinical research studies that will:

  • Predict on a case-by-case, personalized basis which of the two main types of standard chemotherapy, anthracycline-based or platinum-based, will be most effective in treating a woman’s breast cancer, and with fewest adverse side effects;
  • Develop, in collaboration with Western New York Urology Associates, a diagnostic test for superficial bladder cancer, the ninth most common cancer in the U.S. and the most expensive of all cancers in terms of cost to treat; and
  • Engage 600 healthy volunteers representing the ethnic, racial, socioeconomic and geographic diversity of the eight-county Western New York region in an initiative to identify the particular healthcare priorities of this community, aided by a mobile tissue-collection unit that will travel to disparate and underserved areas.
  • In addition, RPCI expects to use the resources of the CPM in planning individualized care for its lung, melanoma and leukemia patients in the near future.

Read more about the CPM below:

Roswell Launches Center for Personalized Medicine

Groundbreaking Cancer Research Hwp-contentening in Buffalo

Progressive Medicine is Roswell’s Newest Venture

 

UB Medical School to Develop Tools for Cloud-Based Simulations of Patient Visits

UB is one of eight institutions in the U.S. chosen to write patient cases

The American Medical Association is providing funding to support the University at Buffalo (UB) School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and other institutions in a national consortium to develop simulated, interactive “encounters” with virtual patients to supplement the education of students in the third year of medical school.

The i-Human Patients platform is a cloud-based service for medical students that simulates a patient visit. Students use the software to interview and examine animations of patients, order and review diagnostic tests, develop diagnostic hypotheses and create a treatment plan. Online guidance and comprehensive feedback occurs at every step of the process.

Avery Ellis, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine and physiology and senior associate dean for medical curriculum at UB, is one of 8 faculty members at prestigious institutions throughout the U.S., who will be working together to develop simulations for internal medicine. Ellis and Susan J. Gallagher, MD, clinical associate professor of medicine at UB and director for internal medicine clerkships in the third and fourth years, will be writing cases on chest pain, heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, edema, electrolyte abnormalities, syncope, dizziness and hyperlipidemia.

The new cases are expected to be completed, peer-reviewed and included in the curriculum that third-year medical students at UB experience starting in July, Ellis says.

“These very sophisticated patient simulations will round out the education of third-year medical students,” says Ellis. “For our students, working on these patient simulations, complete with actual test results and realistic clinical data, such as audible heart sounds, angiograms and ultrasound studies, is far more beneficial than just reading about the same disease in a textbook.”

The cases are being prepared by faculty at UB and at the University of Chicago, Columbia University, Cornell University, Northwestern University, Tufts University, Rush University and Stony Brook University.

“These interactive web-based patient encounters will nicely complement the other kinds of experiences our students are getting at UB’s Behling Simulation Center,” Ellis adds.

“The American Medical Association is funding the development of medical school cases and other interactive content for the i-Human Patients educational services platform because we see a need to accelerate student training in patient assessment and diagnostic skills,” says James Madara, chief executive officer/education vice president for the AMA.

i-Human Patients Inc. is a designer and developer of “virtual” medical training products and services.

Ellen Goldbaum (UB); goldbaum@buffalo.edu; 716.645.4605

Hauptman-Woodward to Open Doors for Science & Art Cabaret

The Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute (HWI) will open its doors to the public on Jan. 30 for “Modularity,” the latest event in Buffalo’s Science & Art Cabaret series.
Each cabaret centers around a common theme, featuring short talks by scientists and artists on how that theme relates to their work. The next topic of conversation will be modularity, which refers to the way ideas and objects, from molecules to artwork with repeating patterns, can be broken down into standardized units.

“Modularity” will begin at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 30 at HWI at 700 Ellicott St., Buffalo. The event is free and open to the public.

The lineup:

  • A talk by University at Buffalo Professor of Physics Surajit Sen on sociophysics: modeling battles, terrorism and chimpanzee social behavior with simple rule-based dynamics, which rely in part on the methods of physics to describe dynamical problems beyond the traditional bounds of physics.
  • A presentation by HWI researcher Vivian Cody, a UB professor of structural biology, on the artful structural models of protein/enzymes and their functions.
  • A video interview with Western New York artist Katherine Sehr, whose work is notable for its intense modularity. As described in Artvoice in 2007, “Sehr’s drawings don’t look like drawings at all, but rather like prints of simple, paired squares of muted colors. Upon closer inspection, however, they reveal themselves to be something entirely different — large, frenetic, scribbled testaments to compulsive, repetitive motion.”
  • Bill Louden, who will present, “Piece for String Quartet and Chladni Pattern Generator.”

The event will give the public a chance to step inside HWI’s state-of-the-art research building, which opened in 2005. The sleek, modern facility features an innovative floor plan that supports HWI’s collaborative and open culture.

The Science & Art Cabaret series is organized by the UB College of Arts and Sciences, Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center and Buffalo Museum of Science.

“Modularity” is the 13th cabaret held since 2009, and the third of the 2012-13 season. For information on the Science & Art Cabaret and past events, visit http://www.buffalo.edu/news/13376 and http://www.hallwalls.org/science-art.php.

Charlotte Hsu (UB); chsu22@buffalo.edu; 716-645-4655, 510-388-1831

UB Recruiting Innovators in Life Sciences for High-Tech CEL

Program Offers Entrepreneurial Guidance, Knowledge and Mentorship for those in Field

Leaders of early-stage life sciences and technology companies can take advantage of a High-Tech Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL) program that will begin in March 2013.

Now in its third year, the High Tech CEL is a collaboration between the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership (CEL) in the University at Buffalo School of Management and UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences.

With funding from a number of sources, including an Economic Development Administration grant and an award from UB’s “E Fund,” the program’s mission is to help participants build a strong management team and develop an individualized pathway toward commercialization.

Participants of the 10-week program meet for two hours a week, covering a range of topics, including commercialization strategies, finance issues, intellectual property, FDA regulations, investor relations, sales and marketing, and more.

“The High-Tech CEL is a unique opportunity for entrepreneurs to build their business skills, gain hands-on experience, and learn from other professionals who understand the challenges they’re facing,” said Thomas Ulbrich, executive director of UB’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership.

“This program is greatly beneficial for those whose firms are in the initial phase of taking their work from the lab to the market,” said Marnie LaVigne, PhD, associate vice president of economic development at UB. “It incorporates key high-tech business topics into the strength of the time-tested CEL program that has helped hundreds of traditional businesses in the region grow since 1987.”

Case studies, roundtables, panel discussions and lectures make up the curriculum, and each participant is partnered with a seasoned, successful entrepreneur who is attuned to the issues that influence business decisions. These mentors guide, advise and support participants throughout the program to help them achieve specific objectives.

The High-Tech CEL program is engaging and interactive and focuses on the importance of initiating and nurturing relationships between early-stage companies and leaders in the Buffalo-Niagara life science and technology ecosystem by providing structured networking opportunities throughout the duration of the program.

Charles d’Estries, director of SciBiz International Inc., will moderate the program. He provides business development consulting for entrepreneurs in the life sciences and high-tech fields, particularly those in the early stages of business.

Program cost is $995 per participant, and consecutive participants from the same company can attend at a 50 percent discount ($497).

To learn more or wp-contently, contact the CEL at 716-885-5715 or mgt-cel@buffalo.edu.

The mission of UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (COE) is to study the mechanistic processes involved in human disease with the goal of developing diagnostics tools and therapeutic interventions, preventative treatment and other disease management devices and processes to improve the health and well-being of the population. This scientific mission is balanced by the COE’s responsibility to act as a facilitator of economic development in Upstate New York by building and supporting partnerships between academia, industry and government. More information is available at http://www.bioinformatics.buffalo.edu.

The UB School of Management is recognized for its emphasis on real-world learning, community and economic impact, and the global perspective of its faculty, students and alumni. The school has been ranked by Bloomberg Businessweek, the Financial Times, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report and The Wall Street Journal for the quality of its programs and the return on investment it provides its graduates. For more information about the UB School of Management, visit http://mgt.buffalo.edu.

Jacqueline Ghosen, UB School of Management; ghosen@buffalo.edu; 716-645-2833

New Vaccine Research Aims to Prevent Recurrent Ear Infections

Lab in UB’s Clinical and Translational Research Center is one of few in the world studying an increasingly prevalent bacterium, once considered harmless
Children’s ear infections cause more than pain and sleepless nights; they temporarily disrupt hearing when children are at a critical age for speech and language development.  They also have major social and economic costs.

But while infants and children receive immunizations against infections caused by Haemophilus influenzae and pneumococcus, there is no vaccine against Moraxella catarrhalis, an increasingly prevalent bacterium that causes at least ten percent of otitis media cases.

Now, University at Buffalo scientists, among just a handful of researchers in the world studying this organism, have received a $1.5 million National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant to develop a vaccine against it. The researchers are among the first tenants in UB’s Clinical and Translational Research Center, which opened in September on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus.

The goal of the current research, funded by the NIH’s National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, is to identify new virulence mechanisms for this understudied pathogen, identify the structure of a candidate antigen for a new vaccine and develop a new vaccine.

According to Timothy F. Murphy, MD, SUNY Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Microbiology in the UB School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and principal investigator on the NIH grant, research on M. catarrhalis has lagged because it was originally believed to be a “commensal” or harmless bacterium. While it does cause milder cases of middle ear infections (otitis media) than other bacteria, Murphy said it is becoming more prevalent. Preliminary evidence also shows that existing ear infection vaccines are changing colonization patterns among otitis media pathogens, possibly increasing the prevalence of M. catarrhalis infections.

“Of the 15 to 20 million cases of otitis media each year in the U.S., about ten percent are recurring, causing incredible disruption for the child and the family,” explains Murphy. “When a child has the infection, the middle ear fills with fluid, a condition that can last for a month or longer. During that time, the child’s hearing is muffled, which disrupts the normal development of language and speech skills, potentially resulting in long term delays and learning problems in school.”

Recurrent ear infections also require repeated courses of antibiotics, which then contribute to the global problem of antibiotic resistance. Some children must undergo insertion of drainage tubes under general anesthesia.

“The best option would be to prevent these infections in the first place,” says Murphy.

The goal of the UB researchers is to identify M. catarrhalis antigens that are very similar among all strains so that a vaccine based on a single antigen will protect against as many strains of the bacterium as possible.

“Based on our results thus far, it looks like we will be able to identify antigens that are identical or very similar among all strains and genetic lineages,” says Murphy.

He and his colleagues are using bioinformatics to identify genes predicted to encode proteins on the surface of the organism, construct a gene chip to test which of more than 300 possible genes on the surface are identical or similar among multiple strains and then clone genes for some of the predicted proteins for testing in in vitro and mouse models.

The UB group is now testing several promising vaccine antigens that they have identified. A new vaccine could be ready for human testing in three to five years.

Murphy and his colleagues at UB are global leaders in the study of M. catarrhalis in otitis media in children and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbations in adults. Their hope is that the same vaccine could be used to prevent both kinds of infections.

In addition to directing the M. catarrhalis research, Murphy directs UB’s Clinical and Translational Research Center and is senior associate dean for clinical and translational research in the UB medical school. For more than a decade, Murphy has studied how M. catarrhalis causes both otitis media in children and infections in chronic obstructive COPD in adults.

Ellen Goldbaum (UB); goldbaum@buffalo.edu; 716.645.4605