Harvard Medical School
Sabatini Neurobiology Laboratory

Boston, MA

The Bernardo Sabatini Lab is part of the Neurobiology Department at Harvard Medical School. In 2014 MDS completed a full planning, design and implementation of the lab. The primary design goal of the project was to create a highly flexible research space capable of easy adaptation, accommodating the dynamic nature of neuroscience research.

 Flexible work area 

Flexible work area 

 Shared office area

Shared office area

The project involved the relocation and renovation of 4,500 sf of laboratory and 1,000 sf of shared support space in the Warren Alpert Building. Working collaboratively with Dr. Sabatini to establish program needs, design standards, optimal space allocation and layout plans, and target design priorities, MDS met repeatedly with Dr. Sabatini to comprehend the lab’s research practices, specific characteristics and requirements of the complex equipment, and operational needs.

The lab includes Behavior Rooms acoustically isolated from the rest of the lab, Wet Bench positions, Tissue Culture Room, multiple Electrophysiology stations, and an office suite for Dr. Sabatini and 15 graduate students and administrative assistants. It is organized in an open, loft-style plan with fixed equipment and utilities on the perimeter. Overhead carriers and flexible casework provide a framework that can be easily adapted to different configurations to support new research practices.

 Flexible lab benches

Flexible lab benches


The flexible layout supports the dynamic nature of Neuroscience research. 


 Flexible work area

Flexible work area

Photos by Chuck Choi

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