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UMass Boston Opens Center To Expand R&D Activity and Corporate Partnering

The University of Massachusetts Boston has opened a new Venture Development Center to expand the university's research and development activity and to provide entrepreneurial opportunities for faculty and students. The center will be the university's focal point for industry outreach and partnering and will offer state-of-the-art labs and research and collaborative facilities for UMass Boston's faculty and students.

"The ... Venture Development Center is the most recent evidence of our commitment to growing our research and reputation for excellence," said Chancellor J. Keith Motley. "The Venture Development Center will broaden and stimulate UMass Boston's research activities, attract top faculty and students, and invigorate undergraduate and graduate learning and teaching."

The university said its research activity has grown 50 percent over the last five years, generating $558 million in total economic activity in fiscal 2008.

Four companies have signed on to locate in the facility at launch:

  • Anthurium Solutions is building a software platform for matching continuous digital work with virtual workers globally;
  • DPixel, based in Milan, Italy is a venture advisor and manager of an investment fund focused on digitalization of content and processes;
  • GeoMed Analytical, launched by UMass Boston faculty member Robyn Hannigan, is a custom analytical services and support company devoted, in part, to advancing innovative analytical techniques for quantification of metals in biological samples in medical sciences;
  • Symmetric Computing is a Massachusetts-based high-performance computing start-up company developing advanced supercomputing for the life sciences industry.

In addition to the current partners, the Venture Development Center is working to launch the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy with Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center later this year. The center will work to develop affordable diagnostic tests that match a disease with therapy for community hospitals.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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