The National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals (NIIMBL) based at the University of Delaware's STAR (Science, Technology and Advanced Research) campus will receive more than 150 million dollars in funding from the federal government.
The funds, announced by U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, are through the National Institute of Standards and Technology and extend federal support of NIIMBL for five more years.
NIIMBL Executive Director Kelvin Lee said eighty-three million dollars of the funding is earmarked for coronavirus response projects.
"All of that work is to either prevent the next coronavirus outbreak, prepare for the next coronavirus outbreak, or respond to the current or future outbreaks," said Lee.
"There's elements of responding to the current situation, then there's also, very frankly, how do you try to make sure this never happens again," said Lee, "and how can we take advantage of the learnings and the opportunities in terms of what we need to innovate in so that we can go faster next time in terms of bringing vaccines and medicines to the American people."
University of Delaware students will continue to get the opportunity for hands-on learning at the NIIMBL facility as a result of the additional funding.
NIIMBL is a public-private partnership founded in 2017 with more than 180 members, representing large industries, small businesses, academic institutions, non-profit and federal agencies.
The objective of the institute is to improve U.S. competitiveness in the biopharmaceutical industry.