Research Facilities

Our facilities, our extraordinary researchers

jabsom research facilities

The University of Hawaiʻi John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM) campus routinely finds itself in the top five of surveys about the “most beautiful medical schools” in America. JABSOM’s $150 million JABSOM complex is located on a 9.9 acre site at the center of the Kakaʻako Waterfront.

Our learning and research complex is recognized by the U.S. Green Buildings Council (USGBC) for its energy efficient design, which includes a unique Cold Seawater Cooling System which pulls frigid seawater from the ocean to assist in our air conditioning system, then returns the water to the sea. The JABSOM complex is the first to incorporate energy efficiency and innovations in both its laboratories and offices by adopting the USGBCʻs Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating System.

The Medical Education Building (MEB) of 114,546 square feet, features modern classrooms, a clinical skills center, a grid access-3D room, a human patient simulator facility, and a 150-seat auditorium. The MEB houses the Office of the Dean, the Office of Medical Education, the Office of the Associate Dean for Administration, Finance and Operations, the Health Sciences Library, and the Department of Quantitative Health Sciences, among others.

Research is centered in the 184,142 square foot Biosciences Building (BSB), which features state-of-the-art wet laboratories and gross anatomy facilities. The BSB houses laboratories including a 2,000 square foot Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) research laboratory, laboratory-support functions, offices and conference areas for researchers, and a vivarium and BSL-2 insectary for small laboratory animals and insects.  Shared research core facilities are available.

Animal Housing and Care. The 17,834 square foot JABSOM vivarium, built in 2005, is operated by the accredited Animal and Veterinary Service (AVS) according to the PHS NIH Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare (OLAW), US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) guidelines. It has a holding capacity of 6,111 cages, has 12 animal holding rooms, six procedure rooms including an Animal Biosafety Level 3 (ABSL3) suite, and a sound isolation room for neuro-behavioral and electrophysiological animal testing. There are also necropsy, diagnostic lab, pharmacy, and various storage rooms. The facility uses a building automated system (Edstrom Watchdog®) that controls and monitors temperature, humidity, air-differential pressures, and security. It is also equipped with a state-of-the-art cage wash facility, including a pass-through rack washer, tunnel washer, and autoclave for racks and equipment, an alkaline hydrolysis digester, reverse-osmosis water, and a vacuum bedding supply and disposal system.

Library and Information Services. The Health Sciences Library serves as an information resource for JABSOM, the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa campus, the UH system, and the State. Emphasis is on web-accessible materials. Collections include a wide variety of print and electronic resources, primarily in the clinical sciences. Services available to both students and the public include computer workstations, individual study carrels in stack area, and library reference assistance.

Information Technology Facility and Services. The Office of Information Technology provides technology support to JABSOM at the Kakaʻako campus, and JABSOM departments, programs and clinics located off-campus, including The Queen’s Medical Center, Kapiʻolani Medical Center for Women & Children, Kuakini Health System, the Physician Center at Mililani, and the 677 Ala Moana Building. All faculty and staff have desktop and laptop computers connected to both wired and wireless networks with access to high-speed Internet, email, and video teleconferencing. Computer labs are available in the MEB and are linked to the simulation lab and the Access Grid Room. The Access Grid Room has high definition 3-dimensional imaging simulations, virtual reality simulations, and high bandwidth Internet2 communication. A Polycom two-way interactive video system, telephone land lines, and Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) are available for teleconferencing between collaborating institutions. For technical support, email

Clinical Research Support Facilities. The Hawaiʻi Center for AIDS (HICFA) provides clinical care, conducts translational research, and clinical trials to evaluate optimal therapies for HIV infection and AIDS-associated complications through the Clint Spencer Clinic (CSC) and several specialized laboratories. The CSC, located at the JABSOM Kakaʻako campus, is a multi-specialty clinic where physicians trained in Internal Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Anal Dysplasia Evaluation and Care, and a Women’s Health-Nurse Practitioner provide state-of-the-art HIV-related primary and consultative care for all of Hawaiʻi’s HIV-infected population. The CSC occupies 3,550 square feet and includes a waiting/reception room, office, charting areas, six exam rooms, and two procedure rooms. An additional room accommodates a dual energy absorptiometry (DXA) machine, an imaging scanner that measures bone density as well as fat and muscle by body region. The DXA is therefore useful for research and therapeutic intervention trials for metabolic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease, and for studies that examine how to build muscle and strength.

The Kapiʻolani Medical Center for Women and Children (KMCWC), a nationally recognized, not-for-profit hospital, is widely known as Hawaii’s leader in the care of women, infants, and children. It houses the clinical practice and research of JABSOM faculty in the Departments of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Women’s Health and Pediatrics. KMCWC is an important clinical research site and resource. In addition to providing investigators access to the recruitment of women and children in both outpatient and inpatient settings, KMCWC also provides access to patient databases in obstetrics and gynecology populations, and pediatric populations. The OBGYN clinical site is 2,944 square feet and includes a waiting/reception room, office and charting areas, three consultation rooms, four exam rooms, and two procedure rooms. Every examination, procedure, and consultation room is equipped with computers with access to an electronic medical record system. Standard exam rooms have an exam table, desk, two chairs, mounted ophthalmoscope/otoscope, and a small supply cabinet. Some exam rooms are equipped with a power-adjustable exam table and focused light feature for pelvic examinations. A nearby storage room contains common clinic supplies, a small refrigerator used to store a small supply of vaccines and injectable antibiotics, and an autoclave for sterilizing small surgical/colposcopy instruments. KMCWC is also home for the Hawai‘i IDeA Center for Pediatric and Adolescent Clinical Trials 2 (HIPACT2), part of the nationwide NIH-supported Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) IDeA States Pediatric Clinical Trials Network (ISPCTN).

A major teaching hospital with a mission to improve the well-being of Native Hawaiians and all of the people of Hawaiʻi, the Queen’s Medical Center (QMC) serves as the primary clinical training site for JABSOM’s Internal Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, and Pathology residency programs. QMC and JABSOM have an affiliation agreement to expand medical education and research, engage the next generation of healthcare professionals, and improve the health and well-being of people in our state. Physicians at the Queen’s Heart Institute are the primary teaching faculty for the UH Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) Fellowship Training Program. JABSOM faculty can participate in cutting-edge neuroscience clinical trials through the Queen’s Neuroscience Institute (NSI). The collaborative UH/QMC Magnetic Resonance Research Center explores cutting edge MRI technology for improved imaging diagnostics in healthcare.

Regulatory Knowledge and Support Facility. Led by Venkataraman Balaraman, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, and Kari Kim, MBA, this facility assists researchers who need assistance in complying with human subject protection policies. Dr. Balaraman and Ms. Kim provide consultations and training in human subject protection, including Institutional Review Board submissions. The facility also offers independent Data Safety Monitoring Board services to support the needs of research projects, an Advisory Board to review research ethics issues and concerns, and educational sessions throughout the year that focuses on research ethics and regulatory knowledge.

Additional research facilities located at other sites include the Institute for Biogenesis Research, the University of Hawaiʻi Cancer Center, the Pacific Biosciences Research Center, and affiliated hospitals throughout the State of Hawaiʻi.