University of Wyoming officials held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday at a UW School of Pharmacy laboratory remodeled to facilitate a leading researcher in the field of regenerative medicine.

UW President Dick McGinity and College of Health Sciences Dean Joe Steiner cut the ribbon on the new L.S. Skaggs Research Laboratory, which was adapted to house Jared Bushman and his research team.

Bushman’s interdisciplinary background includes pharmacology and neuroscience that has taken him into the area of biomaterials and regenerative medicine. His group works to raise the clinical standard for peripheral nerve regeneration through organ and tissue transplants between people with different genes.

The facility is named for L.S. “Sam” Skaggs, an entrepreneur and philanthropist who worked to combat human suffering until his death in 2013. The Skaggs family established the ALSAM Foundation in 1984, and since then the Foundation has funded improvements to the UW School of Pharmacy research infrastructure as well as UW’s hiring of Bushman.

“The Skaggs family has been dedicated advocates and financial supporters of pharmacy education for many years,” says Steiner. “Through the ALSAM Foundation, established by Mr. and Mrs. Skaggs, they have had a profound impact and have immeasurably improved pharmacy education and research in the Western states.”

The Foundation’s gift has funded Bushman’s research as well as the construction of a revolutionary surgical suite which continues to play a key role in Bushman’s work. The remodeled laboratory afforded Bushman enough space to hire a postdoctoral fellow, a graduate student and two undergraduate students.

The expanded research team has generated data used in the creation and submission of three research proposals so far.

The UW School of Pharmacy will use the laboratory space to train pharmacy students, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows as part of its graduate teaching mission to create pharmacists who are scholar practitioners.