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New Jersey Appropriates $270M to Build Biomedical and Stem Cell Research Facilities

January 08, 2007

Last month, New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine signed a bill that will contribute $270 million to the construction of five biotechnology research facilities across the state. The funding source will be bonds backed up by cigarette tax revenue, as issued by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. Gov. Corzine believes the state is at a strategic moment to accumulate "a critical mass of scientists, researchers, doctors and physical facilities" ahead of the next presidential administration, which will dictate future federal spending on stem cell research.

The proposal includes:

  • $150 million to build and equip a stem cell research institute at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, which will be named for the late actor, New Jersey native, and stem cell research advocate Christopher Reeve;
  • $50 million for a biomedical research facility in downtown Camden;
  • $50 million for an adult stem cell research facility in Newark at the New Jersey Institute of Technology;
  • $10 million for the Garden State Cancer Center in Bellville; and,
  • $10 million for an umbilical cord blood collection program in Allendale.

In addition to this investment, $10 million has been allocated from the state budget to award stem cell research projects this fiscal year. The New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology will distribute these funds, with $7 million directed to 2-3 embryonic stem cell research facilities not supported by federal funding and the other $3 million to be spent on general stem cell research awards of up to $300,000.

Upon approval by the New Jersey legislature, a referendum that would provide an additional $230 million for stem cell research grants could be placed before the voters on the November ballot. 

Additional information from the New Jersey Commission on Science and Technology on stem cell research, including instructions to attain research grants in 2007, can be found at: http://www.state.nj.us/scitech/stemcell/

New Jersey