$1.74 million Maine Technology Asset Fund award to support Jackson Laboratory Ellsworth facility

Bar Harbor, Maine The Maine Technology Institute (MTI) has made a $1,740,000 award to The Jackson Laboratory (JAX) from the Maine Technology Asset Fund (MTAF) to develop a next-generation vivarium, a facility to maintain research mouse models, at the institutions Ellsworth location.

JAX leads the world in providing gold-standard, pathogen-free mice to the global research community, says Jackson Laboratory Executive Vice President and COO Charles E. Hewett, Ph.D. Demand for innovative mouse models is growing rapidly worldwide, and our Bar Harbor and Sacramento facilities will be at capacity before the end of the decade.

Hewett explains, The new vivarium will provide the space and state-of-the-art automation to expand and optimize production and positions JAX for the next 25 years.

The MTAF award, which JAX will match, will enable JAX to launch a pilot phase to test and validate the concept and equipmentR&D innovation that could be commercialized in the future.

The focus of the new facility will be on people, not machines, Hewett notes. We project 33 new JAX jobs during the pilot phase, 365 at the 10-year build-out, and up to 725 related jobs in the community.

Although JAX is a non-profit organization, its economic consultant projects that from project inception through 2030, vendors and employees of the new vivarium in Ellsworth will generate more than $71 millionin state and local taxes and fees in Maine.

In November 2012, following the purchase of a 143,000-square-foot building on a 17-acre site in Ellsworth, JAX announced that it was launching a multi-year planning process to determine which functions would be located in the building.

The award is one of eight awards, totaling $4.85 million, that the MTI has made to Maine companies, nonprofit research institutions and the University of Maine to develop R&D capabilities in the state.

The Jackson Laboratory is an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institution and National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center based in Bar Harbor, Maine, with a facility in Sacramento, Calif., and a new genomic medicine institute in Farmington, Conn. It employs 1,600 staff, and its mission is to discover precise genomic solutions for disease and empower the global biomedical community in the shared quest to improve human health.


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