A visit to LabCentral is a glimpse of the future of entrepreneurship in the life sciences. It’s a first-of-its-kind shared laboratory space that provides a pre-built business and R&D infrastructure to roughly 30 early-stage biotech companies, each of which would otherwise be forced to equip and permit its own facilities.
The private, non-profit organization, created with grant funding from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center and sponsorship from corporations such as Johnson & Johnson Innovation and Triumverate Environmental, is designed to extend the idea of affordable co-working—so popular succesful in the world of infotech startups—into the realm of biotech. LabCentral residents can access shared lab equipment such as biosafety cabinets, fume hoods, centrifuges, microscopes, and PCR machines. In addition, all permitting and EH&S services are provided as are shared conference rooms, kitchens, and rec rooms. Residents also benefit from close proximity to university research centers, biotech and pharmaceutical companies, and referrals for professional services such as legal, accounting, and investing firms.
LabCentral staff will lead participants on a tour of LabCentral’s recently renovated wet labs and business facilities in a historic Cambridge building that was the site of the world’s first telephone call (in 1876) and Edwin Land’s invention of a one-step photographic system at Polaroid (in the 1940s).