HARTFORD – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) announced on Friday that The Jackson Laboratory (JAX) of Farmington is this month’s “Murphy’s Innovator of the Month.” JAX is a nonprofit biomedical research institution dedicated to discovering the precise genomic causes of and cures for devastating human diseases. Headquartered in Maine, JAX’s new 183,500 square-foot facility in Farmington is located on the campus of the University of Connecticut (UConn) Health Center in Farmington. Since opening in the fall of 2014, top researchers from around the world have joined the JAX team, and the Farmington laboratory is helping solidify Connecticut’s role as a global bioscience leader. JAX’s researchers, scientists, and doctors partner closely with various Connecticut hospitals and universities including UConn Health, the UConn School of Medicine, and Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
“Connecticut’s economy depends on innovative companies like Jackson Lab. They’re working on cures for cancer and Alzheimer’s while tapping into the strengths of our skilled workforce and top-notch educational institutions,” said Murphy. “I learned a lot today about how I can help Jackson Lab and Connecticut’s other biotech companies cut through red tape and expand their research. I’m excited to continue fighting for them in Washington.”
“We are truly honored to receive this recognition from Senator Murphy for our innovations in improving human health. From research on the microbiome’s impact on health to conditions like heart diseases, Alzheimer’s, cancer, aging, and rare conditions like spinal muscular atrophy and Charcot-Marie-Tooth, JAX is dedicated to finding cures for the most devastating diseases by exploiting our powerful technologies,” said Edison Liu, M.D., president and CEO, The Jackson Laboratory. “We appreciate the state of Connecticut’s commitment to the biosciences and Senator Murphy’s heartfelt support. We are excited to be part of Connecticut’s thriving bioscience sector.”
As part of the “Murphy’s Innovator of the Month” series, Murphy will recognize one of Connecticut’s distinct startups or innovators for their outstanding contributions to Connecticut each month. Murphy will work directly with the innovators selected to identify specific steps he can take at the federal level to support Connecticut’s startup, bioscience, and entrepreneurial community. The awardee will also receive an official U.S. Senate certificate of achievement.
Murphy believes entrepreneurship and innovation are building blocks for a strong economy. In the U.S. Senate, he has introduced two bipartisan pieces of legislation to incentivize angel investors to put more money into startup companies – the Angel Tax Credit Act and the Helping Angels Lead Our Startups (HALOS) Act. Last month, Murphy’s HALOS Act passed the U.S. House of Representatives. Startup companies create an average of 2 million jobs each year.
Murphy is also focused on securing federal National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding for Connecticut research institutions. Murphy recently helped secure over $4.8 billion for NIH over 10 years for new investments in cancer treatment and medical research, and celebrated a $2 billion increase in NIH federal investments for research institutions, such as those in Connecticut, that are working to develop new medical therapies, diagnostics, and preventative measures.