You've heard the phrase "a force of nature," but we'd have to say that the University of Pittsburgh is clearly a force of science based on several recent news items: the University ranks in the Top 3 among public institutions of higher learning in the US (according to the NSF); they're in the Top 5 in federally financed research and development expenditures; and they've just had 3 of their faculty scientists elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences. Chancellor Mark Nordenberg says of the first honor:
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The 225th Anniversary of the University of Pittsburgh will be celebrated this year. One of their most notable accomplishments was contributing to the launch of the "Biotech Industry". Herbert Boyer, a Pitt PhD graduate helped discover how to cut and transfer individual genes within the DNA molecule and transfer them from one organism to another. Boyer eventually founded Genetech, widely considered one of the first successful biotech companies.
With many accomplishments, in 2000, Herbert Boyer and his wife established the Herbert W. and Grace Boyer Chair in molecular biology in the University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Biological Sciences. Today the Herbert W. and Grace Boyer Chair in Molecular Biology is used to support an outstanding faculty member in the field of post-genomic molecular biology.
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The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) recently released a quarterly financial report that showed solid growth for Western Pennsylvania's largest health care provider and one of the largest nonprofit health systems in the US. It also announced that it will be begin construction on a $300M facility to house its nascent Center for Innovative Science, which "will bring together leading scientists willing to develop bold, new approaches to understanding complex diseases," according to UPMC's president. In conjunction with its academic partner, the University of Pittsburgh, UPMC is already recruiting nationally for "a scientific leader in genetics and genomics" to head the center.
Researchers at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh (MIRM) have discovered a way of regenerating muscle. Using a tissue culture, the researchers have been able to grow new muscle from pig bladder cells.
When the American Medical Women's Association (AMWA) met in Washington DC for their annual meeting two weeks ago, they gave the 2011 Women in Science Award to Dr. Katherine L. Wisner of the University of Pittsburgh for her important work on perinatal mental health over the past 20+ years. Dr. Wisner is one of over 200 faculty members of the Department of Psychiatry at Pitt and its affiliate hospital, the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic (WPIC) of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC).
Dr. Robert Kormos at the University of Pittsburgh's McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine has secured $13.3 million in funding from the NIH's Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) to carry out a 5-year heart device study in collaboration with researchers at the University of Michigan. Both the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Michigan's Center for Circulatory Support are leaders in research on and implantation of artificial hearts (also known as mechanical circulatory support devices).