Burlington, Mass. – Lahey Hospital & Medical Center (LHMC) has been awarded a $4 million grant from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center (MLSC), which will support the build out of LHMC’s Image Guided Therapy (IGT) Innovation Center. The award is part of the MLSC’s Research Infrastructure Program, which invests in innovative infrastructure across Massachusetts that is in high demand from both academic and industry scientists.
In 2019, LHMC launched a new state-of-the-art Neurointerventional Radiology Suite that houses equipment for diagnosing and treating brain aneurysms, strokes and other neurovascular and spinal disorders. Building on this foundational first step, the MLSC grant enables LHMC to invest in building out a new IGT Innovation Center that will bring together scientists, engineers and physicians to deliver leading-edge clinical care and produce major breakthroughs in novel imaging that will improve diagnosis and treatment in many areas of medicine.
“This investment from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center will empower us to realize our vision of bringing together the best and brightest multi-disciplinary physicians who will work with innovative companies on solutions to real world clinical challenges at an early, preclinical state,” said Christoph Wald, MD, PhD, MBA, FACR, chair of the Department of Radiology at LHMC. “Image guided therapy is the future of minimally invasive precision medicine and enhances the delivery of patient care.”
Minimally invasive image guided therapy is increasingly replacing conventional surgical approaches that involve large incisions, blood loss and long hospitalizations. The ultimate goal of image guided therapy is less damage to healthy tissue, faster recoveries and fewer complications, less pain and scarring and a quicker return to home or work after treatment. An added benefit will be reduced costs associated with disease detection, monitoring and treatment.
“We appreciate this generous grant from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, which will help support solving challenging and complex problems in clinical medicine using minimally invasive image-guided robotic systems that will benefit our patients and the region,” said Ajay Wakhloo, MD, PhD, FAHA, chief of the Department of Neurointerventional Radiology at LHMC and director of the IGT Center. “This funding and support from the Baker Administration will enhance the collaboration between industry and academia, which is now more important than ever and is engrained in the character of Massachusetts.”
The IGT Innovation Center will be the only facility in New England dedicated to the multidisciplinary development of minimally invasive, image guided therapies. It will be built within the main hospital, adjacent to the Center for Professional Development & Simulation, which creates further synergies for the mission of both efforts.
“To remain the global leader in the life sciences, we must continue to leverage emerging research and innovative infrastructure throughout the Commonwealth,” said MLSC President and CEO Kenn Turner. “We are incredibly bullish on the potential of this project to support our research and entrepreneurial communities, while also advancing important science to produce the next breakthrough unlocking treatments and cures for patients around the world.”
Applicants to the MLSC Research Infrastructure program are required to demonstrate the potential of their project to fill a gap or accelerate growth in the Massachusetts life sciences ecosystem. Additionally, they must provide specific details on how the equipment will be shared and marketed to other prospective industry and academic partners. Moreover, awardee institutions are required to regularly report usage of MLSC-funded equipment by external partners, including use by industry partners. Learn more about the MLSC Research Infrastructure Program.
About Lahey Hospital & Medical Center
Lahey Hospital & Medical Center (LHMC) is a world-renowned tertiary medical center known for its innovative technology, pioneering medical treatment, and leading-edge research. A teaching hospital of Tufts University School of Medicine, LHMC is a national leader in several health care areas, including spine surgery, stroke, weight management and lung screenings, among many others.
LHMC is a part of Beth Israel Lahey Health, a health care system that brings together academic medical centers and teaching hospitals, community and specialty hospitals, more than 4,800 physicians and 36,000 employees in a shared mission to expand access to great care and advance the science and practice of medicine through groundbreaking research and education.