The Center for Biotechnology & Interdisciplinary Studies at Rensselaer

The Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies (CBIS) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute interweaves life sciences, physical sciences, and engineering into the fields of biotechnology and medicine, opening exciting new pathways to innovation and discovery. From complex biological networks to nanoscale assemblies that mimic biological processes, CBIS is a powerhouse of academic and research advancement. More than 200 CBIS scientists and engineers are working here to uncover the molecular basis of biological mechanisms and disease, using biological systems as the basis for new therapeutics, and developing new cellular niches critical in tissue regeneration. More about CBIS

Over Ten Years

  • 40 Faculty
  • 200 Ph.D.s Granted
  • 1,000 Undergrads Trained
  • 2,000 Peer-Reviewed Publications
  • 30,000 Citations (ISI)
  • $130MExternal Grant Funding

News & Events

Salt-Evolved Zooplankton Grow Too Slowly To Block Salt-Induced Algal Blooms

Small animals at the base of the freshwater food chain can rapidly adapt to salt pollution – from sources like winter road deicing, agriculture, and mining – but at a price.

Research Focuses on a New Frontier in Circadian Rhythms

A new frontier in the science of circadian rhythms – whose disruption is linked to major diseases like cancer and diabetes – suggests a previously unknown mechanism at work in our daily biological cycle.

Biocatalysis Expert Richard Gross Recognized for Economical Environmental Chemical Advances

The American Chemical Society (ACS) has recognized biocatalysis expert Richard Gross with the 2019 ACS Award for Affordable Green Chemistry, bestowed for outstanding scientific discoveries or chemistries that lay the foundation for cost-competitive environmentally friendly products or manufacturing processes that are less expensive than existing alternatives.

Flipped Cells Cause Blood Vessels To Leak in Diabetes and Other Diseases

An enzyme activated in diabetics has been found to cause previously aligned cells in a blood vessel to reverse their orientation, creating misalignments that allow veins and arteries to leak three times more blood proteins than normally constructed blood vessels.

Research Seeks Candidates for Alzheimer’s Drug to Block Production of Amyloid Peptide

With support from the Warren Alpert Foundation, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have launched a search for drug candidates to block a biological process associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Our Center

  • 150 PhD Students
  • 50 Postdoctoral Fellows
  • 33 Principal Investigator Laboratories
  • 25 Visiting Research Scientists
  • 218,000 sq ft modern facility
  • 31, 240 sq ft of open research labs
  • 13,009 sq ft of support labs
  • 27,350 sq ft of core facilities
  • 5,830 sq ft conference and seminar space

In the News

  • Freshwater Is Getting Saltier, Threatening People and Wildlife

    December 21, 2018 -

    Salts that de-ice roads, parking lots and sidewalks keep people safe in winter. But new research shows they are contributing to a sharp and widely rising problem across the U.S. At least a third of the rivers and streams in the country have gotten saltier in the past 25 years. And by 2100, more than half of them may contain at least 50 percent more salt than they used to. Increasing salinity will not just affect freshwater plants and animals but human lives as well—notably, by affecting drinking water.

  • Brain Scans Can Detect Who Has Better Skills

    October 3, 2018 -

    To gain new insight into how highly specialized workers learn skills or react to stressful situations, researchers are leveraging advanced scanning technologies to look at what’s happening inside the brain.

  • Scientists are developing greener plastics – the bigger challenge is moving them from lab to market

    August 16, 2018 -

    Synthetic plastics have made many aspect of modern life cheaper, safer and more convenient. However, we have failed to figure out how to get rid of them after we use them.