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Cardiovascular Innovation Institute opens; scientific director named

January 13th, 2007

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The Cardiovascular Innovation Institute opened in downtown Louisville.

Internationally known bioengineering researcher Stuart Williams has been selected as the scientific director for Louisville’s Cardiovascular Innovation Institute (CII).

His appointment, announced Jan. 13 in conjunction with the opening of CII, must be confirmed by the institute’s board of directors.

Professor and chairman of biomedical engineering at the University of Arizona since 1997, Williams also directs the Arizona Research Laboratories’ division of biomedical engineering and holds joint appointments in the university’s departments of materials science and engineering, surgery and physiology.

“Dr. Williams brings tremendous expertise in translational research and a stellar track record of scientific research to Louisville,” said Laman Gray Jr., CII medical director and University of Louisville professor of surgery.

“Dr. Williams work is an outstanding fit for the CII and the University of Louisville,” said UofL President James Ramsey. “As a leader, a scientist and an entrepreneur, his expertise in biomedical engineering and materials science will complement the work being done by several of our distinguished faculty. I look forward to seeing the progress he will bring the institute in the future.”

A partnership between the University of Louisville and Jewish Hospital, the institute seeks to improve care for patients with advanced heart disease, so they may live longer, richer lives. It will build on the success of both institutions’ work with ventricular assist devices and artificial hearts.

The institute will focus on testing, clinical evaluation and development of bio-adaptive heart innovations and combination therapies, including heart assist devices, gene therapies, biofeedback sensors and related technologies. This is done through a collaboration between UofL’s Health Sciences Center and the Department of Bioengineering at the university’s J.B. Speed School of Engineering.

CII includes expanded research facilities plus training and administrative space equipped with the latest technology. Funding for the facility includes a $15 million investment from Jewish Hospital, $6.2 million in federal earmarks secured by Sen. Mitch McConnell, $4.2 million invested by the University of Louisville, a $5 million grant from Kosair Charities, $5.5 million from the Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development and the Department of Commercialization and Innovation and $1.5 million from the Gheens Foundation.

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Cardiovascular Innovation Institute

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