Inside the Keck Center

The W.M. Keck Center for Collaborative Neuroscience is designed for team science and interactive communication.  Planned by Larry Wente and Sterling Plenart of Gertler & Wente Architects, the W. M. Keck Center for Collaborative Neuroscience adheres to three principles: the Center accommodates all the technologies needed for multidisciplinary studies; the design fosters collaboration; and, the facility not only is accessible to, but usable by, people in wheelchairs.  The design flowed from these principles. 

Adjacent to the Keck Center is the Rutgers Stem Cell Research Center (SCRC). The W. M. Keck Center operates the SCRC and works in collaboration with stem cell scientists throughout New Jersey and around the nation and world.

Facilities: The 10,000 square foot facility includes a large central laboratory with specialty areas dedicated to molecular, cellular, and tissue analyses, a state-of-the-art confocal facility, tissue culture laboratory, four-station animal surgery suite with separate animal holding area, four specialized laboratory spaces, offices, conference spaces, seminar room, machine shop, and staff lounge.  The Center is designed to be open, interactive, and handicap accessible.  The center is fully equipped to carry out high-volume studies of spinal cord injury models.  Its multi-user design facilities allow teams of surgeons and researchers to significantly boost productivity and capability in-house, with consortia of scientists, and with collaborating laboratories.

Eighty percent of the space is shared with all working spaces shaped to facilitate people collaboration.  All working surfaces are desktop for sit-down users. Under-the-counter refrigerators with double glass doors are accessible and located in the appropriate working areas.  To meet storage needs, each user is assigned one or more mobile rolling cabinets. To make the laboratory comfortable and home-like, the Center includes a comfortable wood-paneled staff lounge with refrigerator, microwave, and dishwasher.  Because people in wheelchairs cannot reach up high, there are no wall cabinets thus permitting the display of original art including several works created by people with spinal cord injuries.  The oval motif, use of wood and glass, choice of colors, and indirect lighting create an atmosphere that is warm and welcoming for staff and visitors but with a modern, high-tech look that befits the standard of research being conducted.

Equipment: The Keck Center is equipped with 4 thermal cyclers, a Axon GenePix 4000B microarray scanner, DNA gel equipment for electrophoresis, Applied Biosystems STORM phosphorimager and FluorImager595 scanner, Milli-Q water system, a Genetix QArray2 microarraying robot, Zeiss LSM510 confocal microscope with a Meta Detector, a Zeiss Automated Cell Scan System for Axiovert 200M, Zeiss 200M fluorescence microscope, two Hacker cryostat, two Atomic Absorption Spectrometers, a 96-well BioTek ELx800 UV/VIS spectrophotometer, Sorvall RC5C centrifuges, Sorvall RC3C centrifuges, Revco low temperature freezer, gel dryer, 2 Savant concentrators, and pumps. A TC lab is equipped with 3 laminar flow hoods and 4 Hera incubators. In the newly built RSCRC, the laboratory area is equipped with Eppendorf 5801R Centrifuge, Eppendorf Mastcyc Gradient with LCD control panel, Eppendorf MDL5301 Vacufuge, Fisher Cytofuge, Kodak Gel Logic 2200 system, and Nanodrop spectrophotometer. The NSC culture room is equipped with 3 laminar flow hoods, 4 Hera incubators and a Zeiss Axio Observer A1 microscope with a Zeiss Axiocam. The hES tissue culture room is equipped with 2 laminar flow hoods, 2 incubators, and a Olympus IX81 inverted fluorescence microscope.