A new $25 million research fund has been established at Rockefeller University to aid in new techniques for drug discovery. The Robertson Therapeutic Development Fund was created in light of a generous $25 million gift from the Robertson Foundation, established by investment manager Julian H. Robertson, Jr. and his family.
“The Robertson Therapeutic Development Fund will provide critical support for medically significant research that has evolved beyond the basic research stage, but has not yet amassed sufficient data to attract industrial or venture capital,” said Marc Tessier-Lavigne, president of Rockefeller University. “Julian Robertson’s extraordinary gift will enable these projects to move forward, and the fund’s flexible, multi-tiered structure will ensure that the resources are used efficiently to support projects that have the greatest potential to benefit patients.”
The new research funding will be used to transition basic research knowledge into new medical therapies and support Rockefeller University projects through research grants over a five-year period. Research grants for Rockefeller research labs will range from $10,000 to $1 million or more to be used for groundbreaking discoveries in new medications, new diagnostic tests and other clinical advances.
Research lab scientists at Rockefeller University can request grants, and their applications will be reviewed by an independent committee of experts whose professional experience ranges from industries such pharmaceuticals, biotech and life sciences investment. Dr. Bruce Conway has been selected as the program director and will work towards administering grants, guiding faculty, and assisting in the execution of projects. Dr. Conway has a Ph.D. in pharmacology and has worked for 20 years in drug discovery and early development project management.
Rockefeller University Hospital
Image courtesy of Rockefeller University
Rockefeller University’s 73 laboratories conduct both clinical and basic research in a diverse array of biological and biomedical research fields. In addition to receiving $25 million to use towards the establishment of a research fund, Rockefeller University receives research funding from a number of external funding organizations. In 2013, the National Institutes of Health gave Rockefeller University $61.4 million in science research funding. Rockefeller University is also in the planning stages of constructing a new $240 million, two-story research building measuring 160,000 square-feet.
"The new building is critical to maintaining the university's excellent standards for research and teaching, by allowing for the recruitment of new faculty to replace those lost by attrition, and for the renewal of laboratory space that is outdated and poorly suited to modern science," said a spokesman.
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