Winter 2014

Medical Research Lab Wins Approval

Dean Berman hails opening of TB facility as “a landmark event”

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Research conducted at the newly approved biosafety lab will deepen the world’s understanding of TB. Photo: Alonso Nichols

Tufts University received a permit from the Boston Public Health Commission in June to operate a new research laboratory dedicated to finding new ways to detect, prevent and treat tuberculosis. The 1,700-square-foot Biosafety Level 3 facility, called the Arnold 8 Biosafety Laboratory, is located in the Biomedical Research and Public Health Building (formerly M&V) on the Boston campus.

“The completion of the laboratory is a landmark event for Tufts University School of Medicine,” said Dean Harris Berman. “This facility will make possible innovative, potentially lifesaving research. It will be an important addition not only to Tufts but also to Boston’s health science research capacity.”

Tuberculosis, the primary focus of the laboratory’s research, remains a serious concern worldwide. The World Organization estimates that the disease infects as many as one in three people. Each year, approximately 10 million people develop symptoms that require months of treatment with multiple drugs.

The laboratory will be home to leading scientists, including Bree Aldridge, an assistant professor of microbiology. She is combining her training in microbiology and engineering to uncover the survival strategies of the bacterium that causes TB in an effort to shorten and simplify treatment for the disease.

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