Accelerating the pace of scientific discovery
UF Scripps Biomedical Research will improve outcomes for patients in Florida and beyond
In April, the Florida campus of Scripps Research became part of the University of Florida’s academic health center as UF Scripps Biomedical Research. In October, a record-setting gift of $100 million from the Dr. Herbert and Nicole Wertheim Family Foundation — the largest gift from an individual donor in university history — further strengthened research capabilities.
“Together, UF Health and UF Scripps Biomedical Research can more effectively fight disease threats, address lingering medical challenges and create new science education opportunities,” said David R. Nelson, MD, senior vice president for health affairs at UF and president of UF Health. “The scientists at UF Scripps are world-class experts who have noticeably expanded our research and educational enterprise. The Wertheim lead gift will serve as a potent catalyst for continued growth and scientific and clinical discovery.”
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The Wertheim gift will expand what is possible at the UF Scripps campus by creating a nerve center for biomedical discovery with the resources to conquer or prevent disease and foster health care inclusion. It will support the continued development of more than 100 acres — the 30-acre campus situated within Palm Beach County’s innovation corridor that houses 360,000 square feet of research facilities, offices and classrooms and an adjacent 70-acre tract of land. Pending approval by the university’s Board of Trustees and the State University System’s Board of Governors, the campus will be named the Herbert Wertheim UF Scripps Institute for Biomedical Innovation & Technology in recognition of this milestone investment.
UF Scripps’ reputation for biomedical research paired with UF Health’s clinical and biomedical research expertise creates a synergy for drug discovery and other treatments that can improve outcomes for patients in Florida and around the world.
UF Scripps researchers have been responsible for pioneering discoveries that have led to hundreds of patents and numerous spinoff companies. Among the discoveries at Scripps is a novel antibody-drug combination now in clinical trials for use against aggressive cancers. Other potential treatments for HIV, Parkinson’s, ALS and a form of muscular dystrophy are in the clinical trial pipeline. The UF Scripps campus, with approximately 45 researchers, is one of the state’s top National Institutes of Health-supported research centers.
Work to recruit additional prominent biomedical scientists to the faculty is underway, as are efforts to add personnel with expertise in artificial intelligence and computational biology. UF Scripps Biomedical Research maintains its Jupiter, Florida, campus and continues to support postdoctoral, postbaccalaureate and undergraduate training. Scripps scientists have joined the UF faculty while retaining an additional Scripps Research affiliate title. Scripps Research in La Jolla, California, was unaffected by the transition.
“A vision of this scale requires an incredible array of resources, commitment and leadership, and we are deeply grateful to Dr. Wertheim for his advocacy and unmatched generosity,” said UF President Kent Fuchs. “The Herbert Wertheim UF Scripps Institute for Biomedical Innovation & Technology will be a nucleus of growth, discovery and advancement for our university and our world for generations to come.”