Director's Letter

Ruth Lehmann Dr. Ruth Lehmann

Director, Kimmel Center for Stem Cell Biology
Director, Skirball Institute of Biomolecular Medicine
Chair, Department of Cell Biology
HHMI Investigator
Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Professor of Cell Biology


Dear Stem Cell Community,

I am delighted to update you on the progress of the Kimmel Center for Stem Cell Biology. The Center was established in 2005 with a generous gift from Helen L. and Martin S. Kimmel. The goal of the Center has always been to provide a multidisciplinary research and training environment where groundbreaking research can be conducted to advance the understanding of stem cell biology and explore the potential of stem cells for therapy.

In these past six years our center has grown tremendously and we have reached several of the goals we set at the outset. With the addition of new faculty members, establishment of a graduate and postdoctoral training program, and support from two training grants, we have made significant progress towards our goal of being at and defining the leading edge of stem cell biology research.

Our faculty membership now exceeds 45 members. Our members represent every basic and most of the clinical departments within the NYU School of Medicine, providing for a multidisciplinary approach to stem cell biology. We have recruited new faculty members who bring novel technologies and a variety of stem cell systems to our center. For a list of all our faculty members and their research interests please see the faculty listing on our website.

We are particularly pleased with the progress we have made in establishing a rigorous training program for pre- and postdoctoral trainees to produce high caliber next-generation scientists within the field of stem cell biology. The new graduate training program in stem cell biologyis under the umbrella of the Sackler Institute of Graduate Biomedical Sciences and is among the first of its kind in the country. The first graduate student class was accepted in 2011. This past year the Center also achieved another milestone when we were awarded two training grants, one from the National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health and another from NYSTEM, the New York State Stem Cell Initiative. We are very proud of this achievement and are looking forward to providing exceptional training to our trainees.

At the center of the new program is a highly successful course in stem cell biology directed by Dr. E.Jane Hubbard. This course is team taught by members of the Center and provides students with a diverse and challenging curriculum focused on stem cell biology. Connected to the training program is a seminar series that features outside speakers as well as progress report presentations from NYU School of Medicine faculty, students and postdocs in the Center. This new series provides ample opportunities to discuss the most recent findings in stem cell biology with colleagues. To find out more about upcoming seminars and progress reports please visit our website.

We deeply appreciate the support that we have received from the community and from our benefactors and are looking forward with great anticipation to the future.. In the year ahead we hope to continue our faculty recruitment efforts and to develop new stem cell technologies at NYU Langone Medical Center. Stem cell research has the potential to revolutionize medical care. We are hopeful that the interdisciplinary nature of our center will lead to new collaborations that ultimately foster the transfer of the Center’s research findings into medical practice.

Sincerely,

Ruth Lehmann, PhD
Director, Kimmel Center for Stem Cell Biology
Director, Skirball Institute
Chair, Department of Cell Biology
Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Professor of Cell Biology
HHMI Investigator