From the beginning, collaborative effort attracted interdisciplinary scientists like Leslie Leinwand, Natalie Ahn and Kristi Anseth from across many departments. A task force representing eight different academic departments was quickly developed to find a way to formalize these growing research relationships.
The University of Colorado Boulder leadership recognized that these interdisciplinary efforts were in line with their vision of how the university should evolve in the new century, and they supported the effort with additional faculty hiring, educational program development and fundraising for what was then called the Colorado Initiative in Molecular Biotechnology (CIMB).
Nobel Laureate Tom Cech was asked to return to Boulder from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute to lead the growing effort, working alongside Chief Scientific Officer Leslie Leinwand and Associate Directors Kristi Anseth and Natalie Ahn.
In September 2011, the CU Board of Regents voted to transition CIMB to the University of Colorado BioFrontiers Institute.
Today, BioFrontiers continues to hire new interdisciplinary faculty members with the passion and skills needed to research across traditional disciplines. A graduate studies certificate program has also been instituted (IQ Biology), and the construction of a new building to house collaborative research is nearing completion.
The Institute has its sights set on advancing human health and welfare by exploring the frontiers of biology and translating new knowledge into practical applications. This focus will grow Colorado’s leadership in the biotechnology industry and our state’s contributions to human health.