Friday, November 27, 2015


UTSA, UT Health Science Center, SwRI, Texas Biomed establish vaccine center


From left are Robert Gracy (UTSA), Mike MacNaughton (SwRI), Guangming Zhong (UT Health Science Center San Antonio), Bernard Arulanandam (UTSA), Jean Patterson (Texas Biomed) and Ken Trevett (Texas Biomed)

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(April 25, 2012) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio, the UT Health Science Center San Antonio, Southwest Research Institute and Texas Biomed have jointly announced they have together established the San Antonio Vaccine Development Center, a unique partnership that will result in the creation of new vaccines to treat infectious diseases and approaches for quicker and more effective vaccine development.

"It's significant that the city will have a vaccine development center dedicated to safeguarding the community by coordinating effective collaboration between leading health partners that care about people in San Antonio and globally," said San Antonio City Manager Sheryl Sculley.

"As the seventh-largest city in the United States, San Antonio is experiencing solid economic growth and development in 21st century industries like bioscience and health care," said Sculley. "Biotechnology and health care fields contribute $18.9 billion annually to the local economy. This new center will continue to place the city in a position of leadership in the biotechnology and health care industry at the regional, national and global level."

The San Antonio Vaccine Development Center will draw upon the unique and varied expertise of scientists and investigators at the four partnering institutions. Benefits of the partnership include the Southwest National Primate Research Center housed at Texas Biomed, venues for clinical trials and research and development, military partnerships, and federally funded vaccine-related research programs.

The vaccine center will function through two tiers of leadership: a scientific directors team (one representative per institution) and an administrative leadership team (one representative per institution). UTSA Associate Dean of Research Bernard Arulanandam will serve as the UTSA scientific director for the center while Special Assistant to the President Robert Gracy will serve as the center's UTSA administrative director.

The UTSA South Texas Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases specializes in microbiology, immunology, medical mycology, virology and microbial genomics and conducts research with a focus on vaccine development.

The San Antonio Vaccine Development Center's research pipeline includes the development of:

  • a vaccine against Chlamydia trachomatis, which causes chlamydia and is the leading bacterial sexually transmitted infectious agent worldwide
  • a bio-defense vaccine against Fracisella tularensis, the causative agent of pneumonic tularemia
  • a vaccine against Lassa virus, which causes hemorrhagic fever in humans
  • vaccine delivery systems using microencapsulation and nanomaterials

Additionally, the center researches Lyme disease, Valley Fever, cholera and other infectious diseases with an eye to creating vaccines to prevent and eliminate widespread outbreaks of those diseases.

Last year, UTSA received funding from the U.S. Department of Defense to establish the Center for Infection Genomics. This support allows UTSA to expand its reach and focus on organisms threatening the well-being of the nation's military and will further support the activities of the San Antonio Vaccine Development Center. The new vaccine center will be managed by a team of four scientific officers and four administrative officers, one of each from the four institutions.



Dec. 1, 9 a.m.

CITE Venture Competition & Exposition

The annual Center for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (CITE) 100K Venture Competition and Exposition will be held on the Main Campus on Dec. 1. Twenty-eight teams from across the university will exhibit their project; six teams will compete for a prize pool of more than $100,000 in funding to launch their new venture / company. More than 650 students have participated in launching new technology ventures.
Biotechnology, Sciences and Engineering (BSE 2.102), Main Campus

Dec. 3, 5:30 p.m.

UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert

This concert features 50 community children performing music in the UTSA Downtown String Project Winter Concert. The children, led by UTSA music students studying to be music teachers, will join together in playing the Theme from Batman at their concert. The Batman of San Antonio, a local celebrity figure, will make an appearance at the concert. This event is free.
Buena Vista Theatre, Downtown Campus

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Did You Know?

UTSA writes the book on all-digital libraries

As touch screens and e-books demand more and more attention from both casual readers and scholars, many people say the handwriting is on the wall for the printed page.

At UTSA, the handwriting is on the wall for a library that doesn't have any printed books.

Since March 2010, the bookless library in the Applied Engineering and Technology Building has given UTSA students an innovative way to read, research and work with each other to solve problems.

With ultra-modern furniture and a décor featuring desktop computers, scanners and LCD screens, the AET Library is designed to engage students in an online format. But it also offers group study niches and study rooms with whiteboards and glass walls on which students can write. The space encourages teamwork, communications and problem solving for the next generation of scientists and professional engineers.

Did you know? The UTSA AET Library is the nation's first completely bookless library on a college or university campus. It served as a model for Bexar County's first-in-the-nation public bookless library system and one of its branches, the Dr. Ricardo Romo BiblioTech.

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The University of Texas at San Antonio is dedicated to the advancement of knowledge through research and discovery, teaching and learning, community engagement and public service. As an institution of access and excellence, UTSA embraces multicultural traditions and serves as a center for intellectual and creative resources as well as a catalyst for socioeconomic development and the commercialization of intellectual property - for Texas, the nation and the world.

UTSA's Vision

To be a premier public research university, providing access to educational excellence and preparing citizen leaders for the global environment.

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We encourage an environment of dialogue and discovery, where integrity, excellence, inclusiveness, respect, collaboration and innovation are fostered.

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