Pioneering Cancer Research Complex Nears Completion

Pictured: Zuckerman Research Center

(From left) Douglas A. Warner III, Chairman of the Boards of Overseers and Managers; David H. Koch, Board Member; Louis V. Gerstner, Jr., Vice Chairman of Boards; Mortimer B. Zuckerman, Board Member; and Craig B. Thompson, President and CEO of Memorial Sloan Kettering

Construction on the Mortimer B. Zuckerman Research Center – named in recognition of the $100 million gift from Memorial Sloan Kettering board member Mortimer B. Zuckerman – is all but completed. Our first new research complex built since 1989, the $550 million facility boasts more than 100 laboratories, essentially doubling the number of our research labs. Its location across the street from our inpatient hospital allows for the integration of advanced research and patient care, while fostering a dynamic, two-way exchange of information and ideas among basic scientists, clinical researchers, and physicians.

“This building would not exist without the generosity of Mort  Zuckerman, whose donation was the single largest commitment in Memorial Sloan Kettering’s history,” said Memorial Sloan Kettering President and CEO Craig B. Thompson. “Thanks to his gift, we were able to design an inspiring, interactive, and efficient environment in which basic scientists and clinical investigators can work together in our relentless pursuit of discovering better ways to treat and ultimately cure cancer.”

Latest Technology to Improve Cancer Treatments

The 705,000-gross-square-foot research complex was built in two phases: phase 1, a 23-story, 558,000 square-foot building containing 17 laboratory floors was completed in 2006 and phase 2, a seven-story, 147,000 square-foot addition that is now attached to the phase 1 building, contains a conference center with a 350-seat auditorium, laboratories for research disciplines such as computational biology and cell therapy, and space for physicians’ academic offices. Completion of the seven-story phase 2 addition was recognized at a special event held on Oct 4, 2012, with Mr. Zuckerman and other Memorial Sloan Kettering board members.

The inspiration behind the research complex was to create pioneering research laboratories headed by some of the brightest minds in cancer research and equip them with the latest technology to improve cancer treatment and discover new ways to cure the disease. The Zuckerman Research Center includes many leading-edge research initiatives, such as immunology, molecular pharmacology and chemistry, cancer biology and genetics, cell therapy, and our Human Oncology and Pathogenesis Program (HOPP), a translational research program that allows researchers to focus on moving scientific laboratory findings into clinical investigations and patient care applications.

Home of PhD Program in Biomedical Sciences

It is also home to the Louis V. Gerstner, Jr. Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, a novel PhD program that trains basic laboratory scientists to work in a multidisciplinary setting, leading to careers in which they can apply their laboratory findings to human disease, particularly cancer. The school’s first graduates received their doctorate degrees in May 2012 and more than 50 students are currently enrolled and engaged in graduate thesis work in the laboratories of Memorial Sloan Kettering researchers.

The complex was among the first research buildings in the U.S. to receive Silver Certification from the LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™, a benchmarking standard developed by the US Green Building Council that evaluates the environmental performance of buildings. LEED® Certification recognizes a collaborative and integrated design and construction approach that optimizes environmental and economic factors such as sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality.