Wolf W. von Maltzahn, Ph.D.
Associate Vice President for Research
Professor, Biomedical Engineering
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

“Biotechnology at Rensselaer and in the Capital Region”

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is constructing a world-class biotechnology research facility that will house laboratories for molecular and cellular biology, analytical biochemistry, functional tissue engineering, microscopy, histology, material characterization, and scientific computing. Rensselaer’s building program is accompanied by an aggressive campaign to recruit junior and senior faculty with expertise in integrative systems biology, functional tissue engineering, biocatalysis and metabolic engineering, and bioinformatics. By sharply focusing people and resources, Rensselaer will be able to assume leadership positions in these key areas of biotechnology research.

Other institutions in the Capital Region of New York are also investing significantly in biotechnology and bioscience. The University at Albany, State University of New York, is currently constructing a signature life sciences building on the main campus and will build a Cancer Research Center on the east campus. The new building of the Ordway Research Institute will bring together bioscience researchers from Albany Medical Center, Rensselaer, Wadsworth Institute, University at Albany, and Albany College of Pharmacy to focus on clinical research. In addition, Albany Medical College will create a state-of-the-art neuroscience institute. All of these activities will be enhanced significantly by funds from the GenNYsis program through which the state of New York has pledged to invest more than $50 million over the next three years for biotech research facilities at Rensselaer, UAlbany, and AMC.

Wolf W. von Maltzahn received his undergraduate education in electrical engineering at the University of Stuttgart, Germany, and the first part of his graduate education in biomedical engineering at the Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. After completing his doctorate in biomedical engineering in 1979 at the University of Hannover, Germany, he became a professor in biomedical engineering at the University of Texas at Arlington and University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. His research focused on biomedical instrumentation, mathematical modeling, and the mechanical characterization of soft tissues, in particular small arteries. His research was funded by grants from NSF, NIH, AHA, and some industry contracts. He authored or co-authored over 80 publications in journals, books, and conference proceedings.

Before accepting his current position at Rensselaer in 2002, von Maltzahn was vice president for biomedical engineering at the Whitaker Foundation. During his seven years at the foundation, he directed the Young Investigator Program for biomedical engineering faculty and the Industrial Internship Program for biomedical engineering students; he organized the Whitaker Annual Conference, and participated in major university site visits. He is an elected fellow of AIMBE and an elected member on the Board of Directors of BMES.

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