Governor Gilmore Awards $3.2 Millon For Bioinformatics Research
-South Carolina company to relocate and partner with W&M -
RICHMOND - Governor Jim Gilmore today announced the award of a $3.2 million research grant that will allow the Institute for Computational Genomics, Inc. (INCOGEN), the College of William and Mary and the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech (VBI) to create a cooperative bioinformatics program. INCOGEN will invest $2.4 million to relocate from South Carolina to the Busch Corporate Center in James City County.
“It is more important than ever for the Commonwealth to continue enhancing our intellectual capital,” said Governor Gilmore. “Research partnerships between our colleges and universities and private sector businesses will help Virginia lead in the field of bioinformatics.”
Governor Gilmore awarded the three-year grant to the College of William & Mary through the Governor's Commonwealth Technology Research Fund (CTRF) to collaborate with INCOGEN and VBI in developing a bioinformatics program. This grant was awarded under the fund’s Industry Inducement Program, which helps to attract technology companies to Virginia. The Governor has awarded over $20 million to Virginia research universities under the Commonwealth Technology Research Fund. Grants from this Fund are designed to enhance economic development in the Commonwealth through investment in higher education research.
INCOGEN will create 20 new positions and employ technology specialists such as software developers, database and system administrators, quality assurance managers, science researchers, and administration and management support staff. Virginia successfully competed with North Carolina, Ohio and Colorado for this project.
The James City County Industrial Development Authority is also assisting INCOGEN. In addition, the company was recently awarded a $2 million grant from the National Institute for Standards and Technology under the Advanced Technology Program for research and development of information technology tools for genomic analysis. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), the Peninsula Alliance for Economic Development and James City County assisted INCOGEN with its decision. The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, the Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) and VEDP were instrumental in helping the College secure the grant for this collaboration.
“Williamsburg provides an ideal location for our company,” said Dr. Maciek Sasinowski, INCOGEN’s Founder and CEO. “The area offers a wonderful quality of life and provides an environment which allows companies such as INCOGEN to succeed. In addition, the collaboration between INCOGEN, William and Mary and VBI, made possible by the CTRF funding, provides a tremendous opportunity for everybody involved. We had collaborated with VBI previously, so the decision to come to Virginia was also significantly impacted by the opportunity to be close to the researchers at VBI. I am very impressed and delighted with the level of commitment from the faculty and administration at William & Mary and the efficiency of the entire process. It was the team effort put forth by VEDP, CIT, the Peninsula Alliance, James City County offices, and the College that differentiated this location from any other location in the country.”
INCOGEN focuses on computational solutions for researchers in genomics. It has collaborated with Sun Microsystems and joined the Sun Microsystems, Inc. Discovery Informatics Program. INCOGEN is a founding member of the Interoperable Informatics Infrastructure Consortium. Known as I3C, this organization consists of over 70 international leaders from major life science and information technology companies. The purpose of this organization is to develop common protocols and interoperable technologies for data exchange and knowledge management for the life sciences community.
“INCOGEN’s decision to locate in James City County demonstrates its confidence in the quality of life and education available in the region,” said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Barry E. DuVal. “The collaborative efforts of INCOGEN, William and Mary and the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute at Virginia Tech will not only benefit the company, but the Commonwealth as a whole.”
“James City County is delighted to partner with the State, the Peninsula Alliance, William & Mary, and INCOGEN in this exciting new enterprise that promotes opportunities for our citizens and showcases the next generation of business in our community,” said James City County Board of Supervisors Chairman John J. McGlennon.
“William and Mary is pleased to partner with INCOGEN, the Bioinformatics Institute and the state's Technology Research Fund to attract the benefits of an acknowledged leader in bioinformatics to the area,” said William and Mary President Timothy J. Sullivan. “This confirms our original vision for the New Town area of Williamsburg where INCOGEN and other similar companies may move by bolstering the local economy and offering a range of opportunities for scientific collaboration to our faculty and students in life sciences.”