Web directory gives R.I. scientific community access to lab resources

Academic and medical institutions from across Rhode Island unveiled CoresRI.org, an online directory of publicly shared core science facilities and services, Brown University announced Tuesday. More

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Web directory gives R.I. scientific community access to lab resources

COURTESY BROWN UNIVERSITY
CORESRI.ORG, an online directory, is designed to make expensive scientific resources available to a broad scientific community. The site will be constantly updated, according to a Brown University release.
Posted 9/10/13

PROVIDENCE – Academic and medical institutions from across Rhode Island unveiled CoresRI.org, an online directory of publicly shared core science facilities and services, Brown University announced Tuesday.

CoresRI.org provides detailed information on more than 500 lab instruments and services available in more than 30 core facilities and laboratories at 12 institutions.

The site is designed to make expensive scientific resources, such as high-end equipment and expert staff, available to a broad scientific community.

“Research is very technology-driven and so access to instrumentation is really critical,” said Edward Hawrot, the Alva O. Way University Professor of Medical Science at Brown University and associate dean for the program in biology in the university’s Division of Biology and Medicine, in a release. “Having a searchable database is a big advantage.”

Site visitors – scientists, engineers or physicians – can search by institution, facility, general application or any keyword to find electron microscopes, high-throughput gene sequencers, nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometers, bioinformatics services and many other resources.

Scientists, engineers and physicians do not need to work at any of the partner institutions to use the site or arrange access to facilities listed there.

Hawrot said CoresRI.org can make state researchers more competitive in applying for grants, because they will be able to show that they have access to relevant instruments even if their home institutions cannot provide those instruments.

The site also can help inspire new research collaborations and recruit researchers to the state, Hawrot added.

Pam Swiatek, director of research operations in Brown’s Division of Biology and Medicine, believes that CoresRI.org could also aid long-term economic development by helping scientists at startup companies carry out research and development.

Inaugural partner institutions participating in the CoresRI.org directory are Brown University, Bryant University, Care New England, Community College of Rhode Island, Lifespan, Providence College, the Providence V.A. Medical Center, Rhode Island College, Rhode Island School of Design, Roger Williams University, Salve Regina University and the University of Rhode Island.

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