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GTEC Celebrates Success - Renews Commitment to Regenerative Medicine
Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience (January 26, 2009) — Georgia Tech and Emory Celebrate Success and Renew Their Commitment to Regenerative Medicine
January 13, 2009. The Georgia Tech Emory Center for the Engineering of Living Tissues (GTEC), a National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center, celebrated its tenth year of innovative research. When founded in 1998, GTEC’s focus was on replacing tissues or growing cell-based substitutes outside the body for implantation into the body. As GTEC has evolved over the last decade, its approach has broadened from a focus on tissue engineering to one that includes tissue regeneration.
Now, a decade after the $25 million National Science Foundation award, GTEC is internationally recognized for its strengths and novel applications in the emerging field of Regenerative Medicine. The center’s success is built on the long-standing partnership between Georgia Tech, a top-ranked engineering school and Emory University, one of the nation’s finest medical schools. Both institutions are consistently in the top rankings by U.S. News and World Report.
The day began with Mark Allen, Senior Vice Provost of Research for Georgia Tech, and Tom Lawley, Dean of the School of Medicine at Emory, addressing the crowd and vowing their commitment to build Regenerative Medicine in Atlanta. Presentations throughout the day outlined the impact that GTEC has had on the state. The total quantifiable economic impacts of GTEC’s activities on Georgia total over $177 million dollars since its inception nine years ago.
This unique partnership between a public and private university has allowed GTEC to build a cohesive team of scientists and clinicians with diverse areas of expertise who have a shared mission of understanding how tissues are formed and are dedicated to a larger goal of how they can be regenerated or repaired. This broadening into regenerative medicine is necessary due to the biological complexity of many tissues and organs. GTEC will maintain its goal of developing technologies necessary for cell-based therapies; however, the center now takes several different approaches by incorporating repair and regeneration in addition to replacement. “You can make the world a better place by making a device that goes into a person tomorrow. You can also make it a better place by understanding how a cell becomes stem cell to a cancer cell to a bone cell,” Co-Deputy Director for Research, Ravi Bellamkonda explained.
Ten years after its inception, both Institutions renewed their commitment to GTEC and spoke about a renewed effort in Regenerative Medicine at a day-long symposium and celebration dinner at the Parker H. Petit Institute for Bioengineering and Bioscience on January 13, 2009. Robert M. Nerem, Director of GTEC, addressed the crowd. He emphasized, “The focus for the next ten years will be on the development of clinical translational studies based on Georgia Tech and Emory technologies and the basic life sciences, making Atlanta the leading place for regenerative medicine clinical trials.”
To learn more about Regenerative Medicine and the research taking place among the scientists that belong to GTEC visit the GTEC website.
The Georgia Institute of Technology is one of the nation's premier research universities. Ranked seventh among U.S. News & World Report's top public universities, Georgia Tech's more than 20,000 students are enrolled in its Colleges of Architecture, Computing, Engineering, Liberal Arts, Management and Sciences. Tech is among the nation's top producers of women and minority engineers. The Institute offers research opportunities to both undergraduate and graduate students and is home to more than 100 interdisciplinary units plus the Georgia Tech Research Institute.