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Jefferson and Monell Center Sign Letter of Intent to Merge

Leadership at Jefferson and the Monell Center announced today the signing of a non-binding Letter of Intent (LOI) to move forward with discussions of merging the two organizations.

The proposed merger would combine Monell, the world's leader in taste and smell research, with research operations at the new Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University) and Jefferson Health to open new frontiers that will take transformative discoveries about the senses and translate them into clinical practice.

"We will be able to go further than ever before to link the senses to health," said Stephen K. Klasko, MD, MBA, President and CEO of Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health. "When you combine our clinical work with the entrepreneurial, academic environment of our University, the groundbreaking research that occurs at the Sidney Kimmel Medical College and now add the esteemed Monell Center into the mix, this is how you improve lives."

Monell is at the forefront of research on the senses of taste and smell. Since its founding in 1968, Monell research has advanced understanding of the mechanisms and functions of taste and smell to benefit human nutrition, health, and well-being. The Center's interdisciplinary approach focuses on collaboration and innovation, leading to discoveries that guide real-world public policy, industry practices and people's behavior to enable healthier diets, safer environments, and lead to more powerful ways to address pressing health challenges.

"This partnership would bring together two outstanding Philadelphia institutions with a shared vision of making the world a healthier place for us all," said Robert F. Margolskee, MD, PhD, President and Director of the Monell Center. "The tremendous synergies between Monell and Jefferson will enable us to build on our combined strengths in basic science and stem cell biology and translate them into clinical practice. Together, our research will identify solutions to nutrition-related diseases such as obesity, hypertension, and heart disease, and also extend to address cancer, infectious disease, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's dementia."