Empire State Development Announces Opening of New Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Lab at New York Institute of Technology's Long Island Campus

January 13, 2020

Research at New 1,000-Square-Foot Lab will Focus on Point-of-Care Disease Diagnostics, Virus Therapeutics, Synthetic Biology, and Emerging Contaminants

Empire State Development (ESD) today announced the opening of a new Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Lab at New York Institute of Technology’s Long Island Campus in Old Westbury, Nassau County. The new interdisciplinary laboratory will bring together faculty and students from the university’s College of Arts & Sciences and College of Engineering & Computing Sciences to discover new pathways in point-of-care disease diagnostics, virus therapeutics, synthetic biology, and analysis of emerging contaminants such as PFAS and 1,4-dioxane. The project, which was supported by the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council (LIREDC), furthers Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s efforts to bolster Long Island’s innovation corridor and thriving biotech industry.

Eric Gertler, Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate, said, “Long Island’s innovation corridor is booming — delivering top-notch research, jobs, and economic activity for the entire region. This new lab will further those efforts, while helping train the next generation of scientists who will drive Long Island’s biotech industry to new heights. New York State is proud to support this project, and we look forward to the new scientific advances researchers at New York Institute of Technology will discover.”

Henry C. “Hank” Foley, Ph.D., New York Institute of Technology President, said, “Our region is primed to become a center for research and innovation in life sciences, which will lead to great jobs for New York Tech graduates and wonderful opportunities for us to partner with leading life sciences companies and top scientists.”

The new 1,000-square-foot Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Laboratory is located in New York Institute of Technology’s Theobald Science Center on its Long Island Campus in Old Westbury. A “living lab,” the new facility will include space for faculty to both train students and pursue important interdisciplinary research that combines biology and engineering. The lab will feature high-tech equipment, including:

  • A BioX 3D bioprinter, which can print complex biological components — including, most recently, a 3D-printed ear;
  • A third generation DNA sequencer;
  • A UV-Visible Spectrophotometer and X-ray fluorescence unit; and
  • A BSL-2 Chamber, which enables scientists to research agents associated with human diseases.

The $750,000 project to construct and outfit the lab was supported by a $150,000 ESD grant, recommended by the LIREDC. The project supports the Regional Council’s efforts to support Long Island’s growing biotechnology industry cluster, create a strong workforce development pipeline, and bolster interdisciplinary facilities that will incubate the discovery of new technologies.

Kevin Law, LIREDC Co-Chair and Long Island Association President, said, “From the moon landing to sequencing DNA, Long Island has a strong history of shaping the future of technology. This new laboratory will further our efforts to create a research corridor on Long Island and help ensure that we remain at the forefront of scientific discovery today, while preparing our students to continue that work to solve the problems of tomorrow. I look forward to seeing what researchers at New York Institute of Technology discover in this new lab — and I am proud we could support this important project.”

Stuart Rabinowitz, LIREDC Co-Chair and President of Hofstra University, said, "Long Island is home to some of the best research institutions in the world, and every day our region’s scientists are working on new treatments and technologies. This laboratory will bring an interdisciplinary team of researchers and high-tech resources together with students to further our understanding of the natural world and further develop our biotech talent pipeline — two goals the LIREDC is proud to support.”

This new lab complements over $250 million New York State has invested in Long Island’s thriving biotech sector since 2011. These investments have advanced projects including an electron-ion collider at Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory’s Center for Therapeutics Research, an electron microscope building at Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Stony Brook University’s Institute for Discovery and Innovation in Medicine & Engineering, among many others.

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said, “This lab places Nassau County on the forefront of solving some of the world’s most complex and critical challenges facing human health, while further solidifying Long Island’s place as the epicenter of a thriving innovation economy. I thank Governor Cuomo, ESD and NYIT on this literally life altering investment, which will spur further high-end research and investments in our communities by attracting, preparing and retaining the next generation of talented students, teachers and thinkers.”

Senator Jim Gaughran said, "I am thrilled to welcome a new state-of-the-art biological sciences and bio-engineering lab to Long Island. This lab will contribute to the critical issue of emerging contaminants in our drinking water, among many other pressing concerns. I thank Governor Cuomo for his unwavering dedication to growing Long Island's biotech corridor and developing a stronger workforce, with an unprecedented commitment to advancing investment in science and technology in our region. These investments will undoubtedly lead to additional groundbreaking research and development to solve the pressing issues of our day."

Assemblymember Edward Ra said, “The new Biological Sciences and Bioengineering Laboratory at NYIT is a win for Long Island. These are exactly the kinds of jobs we want to create. They’re tackling profoundly important problems — curing disease, protecting our environment and harnessing the power of synthetic biology to build a better world. I’m appreciative for the state’s investment, and I’m looking forward to supporting the lab and its important work.”

About Empire State Development

Empire State Development (ESD) is New York’s chief economic development agency. The mission of ESD is to promote a vigorous and growing economy, encourage the creation of new job and economic opportunities, increase revenues to the State and its municipalities, and achieve stable and diversified local economies. Through the use of loans, grants, tax credits and other forms of financial assistance, ESD strives to enhance private business investment and growth to spur job creation and support prosperous communities across New York State. ESD is also the primary administrative agency overseeing Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Councils and the marketing of “I LOVE NY,” the State’s iconic tourism brand. For more information on Regional Councils and Empire State Development, please visit and www.esd.ny.gov.


Jack Sterne | [email protected] | (212) 803-3764
ESD Press Office | [email protected] | (800) 260-7313