SALT LAKE CITY — The Huntsman Mental Health Institute at the University of Utah plans to add a new $150 million Translational Research facility near its existing building in Research Park. The building will be funded with a $90 million appropriation from the Utah legislature. The Huntsman family and other private donors will cover the rest of the cost.
The 185,000 square-foot building will include both “wet lab” laboratory space as well as other lab facilities. It will also house a unique seven Tesla magnetic resonance imaging system, with a field strength two to three times greater than a standard hospital MRI.
Dr. Mark Rapaport, chair of the University of Utah Department of Psychiatry and CEO of the Huntsman Mental Health Institute, said the new MRI system will lead to new discoveries in the causes of mental health disorders.
“We need a seven Tesla magnet so we can actually begin to tease apart the brain circuits that are involved in predisposing people to substance abuse disorder or schizophrenia,” Rapaport told KSL Newsradio.
And he said this will be a shared resource.
“We already have reached out to collaborators at BYU and Utah State University, and we envision many other groups wanting to come and partner with us,” he said.
Construction on the new Translational Research building is expected to begin later this year.
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