The Alexandria Center for Life Sciences

Nolan Piccola Strives to Make a Difference

The Alexandria Center for Life Sciences is located one block from NYU Langone Medical Center.

September 12, 2017

Nolan Piccola isn’t playing any games. The Huntington High School senior is serious about getting everything he can out of his four years of high school, even during the summer months.

More than anything else, Mr. Piccola wants to make a difference in the world. The teenager is a mainstay in Huntington’s science research program and is once again interning with teacher Lori Kenny, who leads the research initiative.

Mr. Piccola spent the summer interning at NYU Langone Medical Center’s Neuroscience Institute, which is located one block from the hospital in the Alexandria Center for Life Science in Manhattan.

“I took the train every morning and worked with my mentor, Fanny Dao in the gynecology lab,” Mr. Piccola said. At first, I conducted background research regarding cancer and then was able to work in the laboratory on endometrial cancer. More specifically, I used preliminary findings to confirm frameshift mutations in two tumor suppressor genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2.”

Mr. Piccola later presented his findings to the laboratory’s staff. “I will be using my summer research as part of my science research program project this year,” he said.

NYU Langone’s Neuroscience Institute is home to 17 core faculty members with laboratories in the Alexandria Center and the Smilow Research Building,” according to the lab’s website.

Nolan Piccola
Huntington science research program intern
Nolan Piccola.

“This was an amazing experience for me, as the internship allowed me to work with esteemed scientists and work on something that is truly affecting our world,” Mr. Piccola said. “I just want to make a difference and this internship showed me how.”

The Alexandria Center for Life Science bills itself as an “international hub for collaboration and innovation.” It’s the only such urban campus for life science companies in New York City.

“With mission-critical adjacency to world-renowned academic and medical institutions, the Alexandria Center provides tenants with access to an unmatched concentration of scientific, clinical and entrepreneurial talent, top-tier investment capital and a diverse and innovative commercial life science industry,” according to the facility’s website. “The Alexandria Center for Life Science has become New York City’s leading destination for the most innovative life science entities to translate novel discoveries into breakthrough products for patients around the world.”