Students from Sunrise Elementary in Puyallup, Washington participate in the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS attempt for most people conducting a DNA isolation experiment simultaneously.

Seattle Children’s Research Institute succeeded in a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS attempt for the most people conducting a DNA isolation experiment simultaneously. The record was set to celebrate the groundbreaking for Seattle Children’s newest pediatric research facility, Building Cure, which will be located in Seattle’s South Lake Union biotech corridor at 1920 Terry Ave. It is scheduled to open in 2019.

The GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title was set by more than 300 people at the building’s future location. Several hundred volunteer participants isolated the DNA of a strawberry simultaneously, including elementary school students from Sunrise Elementary in Puyallup, Washington.

“We are honored to set this record with the support and participation of the community, policymakers and young students,” said Dr. Jim Hendricks, president of Seattle Children’s Research Institute. “Building Cure will allow researchers to conduct life-changing pediatric research and we’ve also designed spaces for young students to do hands-on science with added STEM education.”

Building Cure will add 540,000 square feet of lab space.

Dr. Amanda Jones, director of the Science Education program at Seattle Children’s Research Institute, oversaw the experiment and record attempt.

Pillar of pediatric research in Seattle

The new building will add 540,000 square feet to the research institute, much of which will be dedicated to labs, bringing the total square footage of the research institute to more than 1 million square feet. The facility will house a new therapeutic cell processing core called the Cure Factory that will translate lab discoveries into patient treatments, with a focus on cancer immunotherapy and cell therapies for immune conditions such as type 1 diabetes and sickle cell disease.

Building Cure will allow Seattle Children’s to increase production for cancer immunotherapy trials. The Cure Factory will be able to manufacture cancer immunotherapy treatment products for up to 1,000 children each year using the PLAT-02 acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) research protocol or other research protocols. That’s more than six times the current capacity of 150 treatments per year.

The Ben Towne Center for Childhood Cancer Research, currently at 1100 Olive Way, will be relocated to Building Cure.

A scientific space for community

In addition, the new facility will feature a museum, auditorium and classrooms. STEM education and student learning is a major focus of the new building, which will feature programming for young students to be part of hands-on scientific research.

“This community-based DNA experiment ushers Seattle’s pediatric research into a new era that will bring innovative therapies to children around the globe,” said Dr. Jeff Sperring, CEO of Seattle Children’s. “We want this building to be a forum for scientific dialogue and we have planned thoughtful public spaces for neighbors and visitors to enjoy.”

For more information, visit the Building Cure website.