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South Texas-specific research facility, SBC Teleconference Center dedicated (11-1-00)

Today’s dedication of two new buildings in the Texas Research Park doubles the presence of The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio in the park and promises a new age of research geared toward the cure, and eventual elimination, of diseases that disproportionately affect people in South Texas, leaders said.

The $19 million South Texas Centers for Biology in Medicine (STCBM) is the result of generous and enthusiastic support from community donors, the state of Texas and the National Institutes of Health. The state-of-the-art SBC Teleconference Center, adjacent to the STCBM and made possible by a generous $1.8 million grant from the SBC Foundation, provides a bridge linking researchers in the Texas Research Park to colleagues both 19 miles away, in the South Texas Medical Center on San Antonio’s Northwest Side, and worldwide. SBC also has provided $5 million for technology to create a “virtual campus” for Health Science Center researchers.

“We are grateful that former Governor Dolph Briscoe, Jr., and San Antonio businessman Sam Barshop led the campaign for our new South Texas Centers for Biology and Medicine,” said Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., president of the Health Science Center. “The addition of these Health Science Center facilities to the Texas Research Park ushers in a new era of scientific discovery.”

The 87,000-square-foot, three-story building will house laboratories and offices for scientists studying aging and infectious diseases, as well as interim laboratories and offices of the recently announced Children’s Cancer Research Center. The building will have capacity for 200 faculty researchers and students.

Community leaders donated $12 million for the South Texas Centers for Biology in Medicine, expanding upon $6 million in Permanent University Funds approved for the project and $1 million from the National Institutes of Health. The STCBM is adjacent to the Health Science Center’s U. T. Institute of Biotechnology, a molecular genetics research center that was dedicated in 1990 and is celebrating its 10th anniversary along with the Texas Research Park.

Edward E. Whitacre Jr., chairman of the board and chief executive officer of SBC Communications Inc., was one of the invited speakers at today’s dedication.

Contact: Will Sansom