News Release

The Gardens Mall Celebrates the First Year Anniversary of Scripps Florida Opening

JUPITER, FL, February 3, 2009 – The Gardens Mall at Palm Beach Gardens, one of South Florida's premier shopping destinations, is helping Scripps Florida celebrate the one year anniversary of the official opening of the prestigious biomedical research facility with a series of special events, culminating in a day of interactive science exhibits on February 6.

It was a year ago this month that Scripps Florida officially moved into its new 350,000 square-foot state-of-the-art biomedical research facilities in Jupiter.

That gathering in front of the three new laboratory and administrative buildings included state and local dignitaries, Nobel Laureates, Scripps Florida faculty and staff, supporters and friends.

In his remarks that day, Scripps Research President Richard A. Lerner said, "Today we all join together to celebrate the completion of this magnificent campus. We dedicate it to expanding biomedical research, educating and training future scientists and, ultimately, improving human health."

One Year Highlights

Since then, Scripps Florida has grown considerably, both in terms of its scientific reputation and its overall accomplishments. A few examples of that growth:

  • As of December 31, 2009, Scripps Florida employed 340 full time people.
  • Scripps Florida recently received an additional $2 million in two separate gifts from long-time Scripps Florida supporters Elizabeth M. Fago, a successful Palm Beach Gardens business executive and philanthropist; and Miami physician, businessman, and philanthropist Phillip Frost and his wife, Patricia Frost, generous supporters of the arts and education.
  • One hundred and sixteen (116) new jobs were created within Scripps Florida between July 1, 2008 and June 30, 2009. Eight of those jobs were faculty positions; 44 were research associate positions; and 64 were scientific or administrative support posts. Of the new jobs filled, 45 were filled by Florida residents.
  • Scripps Florida scientists were awarded 35 research grants from outside sources with a total value of $81,454,786. Since inception, scientists at Scripps Florida have received a total of $129 million in outside grants. In addition, just over $4 million in funds from Pfizer, the pharmaceutical giant, were spent at Scripps Florida to support ongoing research activities. Approximately 53 percent of total research dollars at Scripps Florida came from outside sources.
  • Scripps Florida continued to expand its Education Outreach Program during the 2008-2009 school year. During that time, 17 Florida high school students, teachers, and undergraduates participated in the highly competitive program. Since its inception in 2006, 43 teachers and students from 15 of Palm Beach County's public high schools have participated.

New Scientific Research

In the past year, scientists at Scripps Research have published a number of studies that have expanded the world's knowledge in a number of important areas and advanced the potential of several new therapies to meet a host of unmet medical needs.

Among those:

  • Scripps Florida scientists determined for the first time that prions, lifeless bits of infectious protein devoid of DNA that can cause fatal neurodegenerative disease in animals and humans, are capable of Darwinian evolution. The study shows that prions can develop large numbers of mutations and, through natural selection, these mutations can eventually bring about such evolutionary adaptations as drug resistance, something seen before only in bacteria and viruses.
  • Researchers from the Scripps Florida discovered several novel small-molecule inhibitors of the hepatitis C virus (HCV). These new inhibitors have the potential to dramatically alter the therapeutic approach to treating HCV infection. With more than 170 million people infected worldwide by HCV, new therapeutic strategies for HVC—a blood-borne disease that affects the liver—are urgently needed.
  • A Scripps Florida scientist, working with the Hanley Center, a non-profit addiction recovery facility in West Palm Beach and the Florida Department of Health, is closing in on a novel blood test that could accurately predict the risk of a relapse in patients with addictions. After identifying some potent biomarkers for addictive relapse in published animal studies, Hanley and Scripps Florida are working together to develop potential commercial and clinical human applications.
  • A pair of scientists from The Scripps Research Institute, one at Scripps Florida, the other at the La Jolla (CA) campus, were awarded a multi-year $3.9 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to develop a new technology to accelerate the search for new protein ligands -- compounds that bind to proteins and alter their function. The new technology could potentially open up a major bottleneck in the search for these basic tools that are the source of most new drug compounds.
  • About The Scripps Research Institute

    The Scripps Research Institute is one of the world's largest independent, non-profit biomedical research organizations, at the forefront of basic biomedical science that seeks to comprehend the most fundamental processes of life. Scripps Research is internationally recognized for its discoveries in immunology, molecular and cellular biology, chemistry, neurosciences, autoimmune, cardiovascular, and infectious diseases, and synthetic vaccine development. Established in its current configuration in 1961, it employs approximately 3,000 scientists, postdoctoral fellows, scientific and other technicians, doctoral degree graduate students, and administrative and technical support personnel. Scripps Research is headquartered in La Jolla, California. It also includes Scripps Florida, whose researchers focus on basic biomedical science, drug discovery, and technology development. Scripps Florida is located in Jupiter, Florida.

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