The Tulane Cancer Center recently relocated a number of its cancer investigators, their laboratory teams and its administrative unit into the new Louisiana Cancer Research Center, a 10-story, $102 million facility near the Tulane University downtown campus. In all, approximately 100 cancer center personnel will work in the new, state-funded building.
Tina O'Grady, a Ph.D. student in the Tulane School of Medicine, works in one of the new laboratories in the Louisiana Cancer Research Center building. (Photo by Ryan Rivet)
The Louisiana Cancer Research Center is state-of-the-art, featuring an open-lab format, the new standard for modern research facilities that offers several advantages.
“Our research personnel are able to communicate and collaborate more effectively, since they are all working together in one large, modern space, as opposed to individual labs,” says Prescott Deininger, director of the Tulane Cancer Center
. “This leads to the sharing of research theories, camaraderie and synergy.”
The open-lab formula makes it easier to share small research equipment, preventing the need for each lab to purchase its own. The format allows for maximum flexibility, so that space can be reallocated as needed.
The space also is an attractive recruitment tool that has already proven effective in attracting well-funded cancer research faculty to New Orleans, Deininger says.
Although six floors of the facility were designed for administration and research activities, two floors have been reserved for future growth. Tulane fully occupies the eighth floor and half of the seventh.
The new building, which also will house cancer researchers from the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center and Xavier University, partners in the Louisiana Cancer Research Consortium
, also offers cutting-edge information technology systems and a large meeting facility on the first floor.
Although a significant percentage of the Tulane cancer research enterprise has relocated to the LCRC, many cancer researchers and their teams remain at the Tulane University School of Medicine, the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, the Tulane National Primate Research Center and the uptown campus.
Melanie Cross is manager of communications at the Tulane Cancer Center.