The Big Bang in BioTech • Brooklyn Paper

The Big Bang in BioTech

Innovative: Long Island University graduate student Nini Fan, a member of the university’s Biotech team, at work in the lab
Courtesy LIU Brooklyn

Fort Greene

Congratulations to graduate student Nini Fan and the Biotech team at LIU Brooklyn. The innovative team was selected to participate in the Innovation Corps program administered by the New York City Regional Innovation Node (NYCRIN) for the National Science Foundation.

LIU’s team will create a Genomic Sequencing Core Facility — a biotechnology Contract Research Organization staffed by a team of experienced scientists and entrepreneurs.

The goal of the LIU team’s I-Corps project is to provide genomic sequencing services to local Brooklyn companies and researchers, while simultaneously supporting and training biology students. The project will evolve into a biotech consulting firm that generates revenue for additional training of students and equipment.

The concept was developed by Nini Fan, a graduate student pursuing Master’s degrees in Molecular Biology and Business Administration-Marketing.

“We are bringing this ‘Next Gen’ technique to a larger audience of scientists, teachers, and students to enable them to develop emerging technology concepts into valuable new products through public-private partnerships,” said Fan.

The project team adds Edgar Troudt, assistant dean for research and strategic partnerships in LIU Brooklyn’s School of Business, Public Administration and Information Sciences, who serves as an entrepreneurial advisor, along with Joseph Morin, professor and chair of the university’s Biology department and Jeanmaire Molina, assistant professor of Biology, who serve as technical advisors on the team.

LIU Brooklyn [1 University Pl. at DeKalb Avenue in Fort Greene; (718) 488–1000]

Bay Ridge

What a centerfold

Huzza to Bobby Daquara who was inducted into the Fresenius-Kabi Hall of Fame on Dec. 6, at his latest blood drive, held at the Greenhouse Cafe. The Cafe, owned by Bobby and partner John Keegan, has hosted drives since 2009.

Bobby was selected to be featured in the 2017 Fresenius–Kabi Donation Hall of Fame annual calendar which is distributed to blood centers across the United States. The New York Blood Center nominated Standing O pal Bobby because of all the above-and-beyond he does to keep the blood supply in the pink.

“We are so pleased that the work Bobby and his team do will be nationally recognized through this calendar,” said Michele Lariviere, recruitment director for the center’s New York region. Adding, “We appreciate all that they do to save lives.”

In 2013, Bobby and wife Kelly, renamed the drive Haley’s Comets in honor of their daughter Haley who lost her battle with the genetic disorder known as Hurler Syndrome when she was 10 years old.

To date the blood drives have supported the community by collecting more than 1,700 blood donations.

The Greenhouse Café, 7717 Third Ave. at 76th Street in Bay Ridge; (718) 833–8200]



Put your hands together and welcome Santander Bank. The lending institution has opened a new branch and donated $17,000 to local organizations to celebrate the occasion.

Local pols and members of the community cut the ribbon on the first-ever Lending Center and officially presented checks totaling $17,000 to Neighborhood Housing Services of Brooklyn CDC (NHS Brooklyn) and Brooklyn Generation School — two organizations supporting the diverse needs of this Brooklyn neighborhood.

“Our Lending Center differs from a typical bank branch in that its only focus is helping people and businesses secure the right home, personal and business loan for their individual needs,” said Steve Adamo, Santander’s U.S. head of home loans. He added, “Increasing our presence in Brooklyn gives us more opportunities to support the community and we look forward to working with our non-profit partners to host neighborhood events at this new location.”

As a service to the community, team members will be offering regular home buyer education and financial literacy workshops to people who want to buy a home, learn how to budget their money and save for the future.

Santander Bank Lending Center [1549 Ralph Ave. at E. 79th Street in Canarsie; (718) 306–5418]

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