A report prepared by RTI International describes the success of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Combinatorial Methods Center (NCMC) in advancing technology development and assisting industry. Launched in 2002, the NCMC was charged with providing technology for combinatorial and high-throughput experimentation for organic polymers, disseminating research and establishing a scientific forum. Structured as a consortium, the NCMC had a membership of 23 companies in 2004 at its peak. General membership costs approximately $10,000 per year. NCMC advanced three platforms for creating screening libraries: gradient thin films, discrete libraries resulting from robotic dispensing, and microfluidics. Such techniques enable the systematic and simultaneous synthesis and testing of large numbers of new compounds. Among the techniques developed by the NCMC was continuous gradient libraries. RTI estimates that economic benefits from the NCMC of at least $8.55 for every $1 invested. Asked if the annual benefits of participation was equal to or greater than the membership fees, 78% of members answered affirmatively.

Source: NIST

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