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Workshop to address questions on Pfizer Center
(April 12, 1999)

A public workshop to answer questions about the UConn-Pfizer Center of Excellence in Vaccine Research will take place Tuesday, April 13, from 3-8 p.m. in the Bishop Center, lower level.

The workshop will provide information about the Horsebarn Road site for the building, the partnership between UConn and the pharmaceutical company, Pfizer, environmental assurance, animal care, and intellectual property, the benefits of the project to UConn and the Town of Mansfield, and other topics.

"The workshop will provide faculty, staff, students and town residents an opportunity to get the facts first hand and a chance to pose questions to University and Pfizer officials,"

says Scott Brohinsky, director of communications. "The Center of Excellence in Vaccine Research has many benefits for both UConn and the town of Mansfield and we want to be sure that people are aware of them."

Members of the Coalition to Save Horsebarn Hill and town officials have also been invited to participate in the workshop.

The $35 million, 90,000 square foot center will be built tucked under and behind Horsebarn Hill, across from the Kellogg Dairy Barn. The building will provide space both for the University and for Pfizer Inc. to conduct research on animal vaccines.

The project will provide the University with at least 18,000 square feet of state-of-the-art laboratories, animal facilities and administrative space at essentially no cost, says Robert Smith, vice provost for research and graduate education. "This arrangement will also provide extraordinary opportunities for UConn-Pfizer collaborations, including opportunities for faculty and student research and academic support," he adds.

The Pfizer portion of the building will provide significant tax revenue to Mansfield.

Currently, the University is collaborating with Pfizer on basic and applied research on vaccines for livestock, including cattle, pigs and sheep. Smith says research emphasis in the new building will be on the development of vaccines that prevent livestock-unique diseases that compromise food safety, farm animal welfare, and agricultural animal production costs.

Karen Grava