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MT. PLEASANT, MI-A joint venture between a molecular research company and an Australian biotechnology company is the first new tenant for a high-tech research and incubator facility at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, Mich.

Dendritic Nanotechnologies Limited, a joint venture of chemist Donald Tomalia and Melbourne, Australia-based Starpharma Pooled Development Ltd., recently leased 808-sf of space in the new 12,000-sf multi-tenant research and incubator complex. The facility is part of the Center for Applied Research and Technology at CMU, a 300-acre certified technology park.

Dendritic Nanotechnologies’ space, which should be ready for occupancy in January 2002, will include incubator space, offices, several individual “secure zones” with controlled access and a conference area. The center will also give the scientists easy access to CMU’s nationally recognized research resources including faculty, students, labs, a powerful IBM supercomputer and high-speed Internet connectivity. Starpharma intends to invest up to $2.18 million over the next three years in the new company, which will employ Tomalia’s team of scientists. They will develop scientific and commercial uses for dendrimers, a unique molecular structure that Tomalia created. Potential uses include innovations in gene therapy, drug delivery and computer chips.

Created by CMU and the city of Mt. Pleasant, the Center for Applied Research and Technology at CMU is home to the Mt. Pleasant SmartZone, part of a network of technology-oriented business centers throughout the state. The center is also Michigan’s first certified technology park. The center is managed and developed by the private, non-profit MMDC, which represents Clare and Isabella counties in the central Michigan region.

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