Gotham's genome center grabs grant for bioinformatics hires

The New York Genome Center has won a grant to fuel its ambitious plans to establish one of the country's leading genomics institutes in Gotham. The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation has awarded the nonprofit $3 million to aid in hiring bioinformatics and sequencing pros, the center said.

Founded in 2010, the New York Genome Center has been raising funds and plans to begin operations in its new 120,000-square-foot facility in Manhattan this year. This latest grant comes as the center plans to staff up with more than 350 sequencing and bioinformatics professionals over a 5-year period. And hiring scads of genomics professionals for the center is expected to boost the city's biotech sector as officials push for expansion in high-growth industries such as life sciences and tech.

"We are very pleased that the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation recognizes the importance of investing in large-scale genomic sequencing, bioinformatics, data mining and translational research," said Nancy Kelley, founding executive director of the New York Genome Center, in a statement. "NYGC's mission and operations align with the Sloan Foundation's commitment to support unique opportunities that will benefit the New York metro area in ways that advance the foundation's interests in science, technology, and economic performance."

Clearly, it's not going to be cheap to erect a major genome center in New York. The project carries a $125 million price tag. Yet the benefits of the investment are expected to include new jobs in life sciences, as well as the advancement of therapies and diagnostics for patients in New York and beyond.

- here's the release