Advancing cancer research

Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah will officially open its Primary Children’s and Families’ Cancer Research Center, Wednesday June 21, 2017. This 225,000-square-foot world-class facility will double HCI’s research capacity and is solely dedicated to advancing cancer research.

The new expansion will house unique resources and technologies that include cancer biostatistics, genetic counseling, genomics and bioinformatics analysis, research informatics and the Utah Population Database. Research enhancements include a biotechnology center, complete with the latest advanced genetic sequencing and imaging equipment.

Scientists and researchers at HCI will leverage the additional space and technology to study the leading disease killer of children, to trace familial cancers, to accelerate the development of new treatments and cancer prevention strategies and to enhance training programs for the next generation of cancer researchers

HCI will plan to recruit 300 additional faculty and staff over the next three years. When the building is fully operational HCI will employ 2,100 faculty, staff and students with the capacity to grow up to nearly 2,600 employees.  The new LEED certified building also includes 276 additional lab bench stations, four rooftop gardens and outdoor walkways connecting the new research building with the original HCI research building and the cancer hospital.

Excavation of the building site equated to nearly 150,000 cubic yards of soil and rock. Due to the prevalence of rock within the excavation site, blasting was used for this work and required significant coordination to minimize any disruption or impact to the ongoing research at HCI as well as patients in the cancer hospital.

The new building addition extends from the southeast corner of the original research area and marks HCI’s fourth major construction phase. The first phase, The Jon M. Huntsman Research Center was completed in 1999, with three floors of research labs and a floor of outpatient clinics. The second phase, a cancer specialty hospital with 50 inpatient rooms, opened in 2004. In the fall of 2011, a major expansion to the hospital was dedicated, doubling clinical capacity.

This ceremony is invite only, but everyone is invited to watch a livestream of the program that will be available at huntsmancancer.org beginning at 11 a.m. on June 21, 2017.