Monell Center Recipient of State Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program Grant

Contact: Karen Kreeger, kkreeger@monell.org

(PHILADELPHIA) December 21, 2022. The Monell Chemical Senses Center has received $1,000,000 in Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program funds for the immediate creation of quality jobs for Pennsylvanians. The program – Monell’s first such grant – finances projects that result in employment related to the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects.

“This funding is being given to an organization with an important research mission that also sees training the next generation as vital to the economy,” said the Hon. Rick Krajewski. “Their long-standing program for training students underrepresented in the sciences – the Monell Summer Apprenticeship Program – is a shining example of this.”

Pennsylvania State Representative Rick Krajewski accompanies the 2022 cohort of apprentices following his keynote address during the 2022 Capstone Symposium of the Monell Science Apprenticeship Program.

Since 1968, the Center has conducted biomedical research on the senses of taste and smell. Over that time, these investigations have shed light on some of the most important discoveries in human health — from finding that flavor preferences are shaped by our mother’s diet before we are born to the role of taste-like receptors throughout the body in protecting us against disease. Some have even informed public health policies made by the World Health Organization.

Researchers estimate that because of the COVID-19 pandemic more than 15 million people worldwide will have permanent smell and/or taste loss. “We have an unprecedented opportunity to continue our efforts in combating this important issue, requiring a significant growth strategy in staff and infrastructure,” said Monell Acting Director Nancy Rawson, PhD. “This funding would not have been possible without the strong support from Pennsylvania Senator Vincent Hughes, Representative Rick Krajewski and Congressmember Dwight Evans whose Districts include the Monell Center.”

Monell also thanks members of leadership, Representative Joanna McClinton, whose District borders the Center, and Representative Matthew Bradford. Joining them in their support are Pennsylvania Senators Christina Tartaglione and Jim Dillon; Pennsylvania Representatives Mary Jo Daley and Jason Dawkins; and Philadelphia Councilmember Jamie Gauthier.

“We appreciate these leaders’ advocacy for this important project within our West Philadelphia community” said Rawson. The funds will be used for capital infrastructure expenditures to allow Monell to expand its staff and faculty.

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The Monell Chemical Senses Center is an independent nonprofit basic research institute based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1968, Monell‘s mission is to improve health and wellbeing by advancing the scientific understanding of taste, smell, and related senses, where our discoveries lead to improving nutritional health, diagnosing and treating disease, addressing smell and taste loss, and digitizing chemosensory data.