One of the most advanced research laboratories in the California State University system is located at CSULB and celebrated its relocation with a dedication and open house on May 9.
The Institute for Integrated Research in Materials, Environments and Society (IIRMES) is a collaborative research center developed by faculty from the colleges of Natural Sciences and Mathematics (CNSM) and Liberal Arts that provides access to state-of-the-art analytical equipment for CSULB faculty and students as well as scientists from other institutions for research in the natural, physical and social sciences studies.
The lab has been relocated from Peterson Hall 3, which is being demolished to make way for a major new science building on campus.
IIRMES projects range from archaeologists performing chemical analyses of ancient pottery shards and stone tools to help them learn more about the native people who created them, to scientists examining water and fish tissue specimens to learn about environmental effects of chemicals.
IIRMES is home to several special programs and centers including, the Facility for Elemental Micro-Chemical Analysis (FEMCA) and the Center for Education in Proteomics Analysis (CEPA). FEMCA is funded by the California State University Program for Education and Research in Biotechnology to provide subsidized analytical services to faculty and students from the 23 CSU campuses.
CEPA provides training and research in proteomics—the study of protein profiles—and was made possible by a $500,000 grant obtained from the W. M. Keck Foundation and supplemental funds from CNSM that were used to purchase an Applied Biosystems 4800 Matrix Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization, Tandem Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer. CEPA is one of the few centers in the nation to make such advanced equipment available to undergraduate as well as graduate students and to focus on training students for biotechnology careers.
To increase instrument accessibility, IIRMES is also now part of a new e-consortium, the California Partnership for Remote Instruments to Study the Structure of Matter (CAL-PRISSM), which enables researchers to remotely access and operate IIRMES equipment.
IIRMES is supported by CSULB as well as grants, donations and contracts from a number of public agencies and private supporters, including the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health, among others.
For more information about IIRMES, visit www.csulb.edu/programs/iirmes/index.htm.