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Old 10-04-2006, 05:20 PM #1
paula_w paula_w is offline
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paula_w paula_w is offline
In Remembrance
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Florida
Posts: 3,904
15 yr Member
Default good news and long overdue

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
NIH News
National Center for Research Resources (NCRR)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, October 3, 2006

CONTACT: NCRR Communications, 301-435-0888, <>


BETHESDA, Md. - National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Elias A.
Zerhouni, M.D., today announced the launch of a national consortium that
will transform how clinical and translational research is conducted,
ultimately enabling researchers to provide new treatments more
efficiently and quickly to patients. This new consortium, funded
through Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSAs), begins with 12
academic health centers (AHCs) located throughout the nation. An
additional 52 AHCs are receiving planning grants to help them prepare
applications to join the consortium. When fully implemented in 2012, about
60 institutions will be linked together to energize the discipline of
clinical and translational science.

"The development of this consortium represents the first systematic change
in our approach to clinical research in 50 years," said Zerhouni. "Working
together, these sites will serve as discovery engines that will improve
medical care by applying new scientific advances to real world practice.
We expect to see new approaches reach underserved populations, local
community organizations, and health care providers to ensure that medical
advances are reaching the people who need them."

Applicants were encouraged to develop institutes, centers or departments
for these awards and were challenged to devise innovative and
far-reaching approaches to build academic homes for clinical and
translational science. In response, the CTSA institutions are planning

-- Develop better designs for clinical trials to ensure that patients with
rare as well as common diseases benefit from new medical therapies --
Produce enriched environments to educate and develop the next
generation of researchers trained in the complexities of translating
research discoveries into clinical trials and ultimately into practice

-- Design new and improved clinical research informatics tools
-- Expand outreach efforts to minority and medically underserved
-- Assemble interdisciplinary teams that cover the complete spectrum of
research -- biology, clinical medicine, dentistry, nursing, biomedical
engineering, genomics, and population sciences
-- Forge new partnerships with private and public health care

"The impact of the CTSA consortium will be far greater than the number of
awards made," said Barbara M. Alving, M.D., NCRR Acting Director. "We're
already seeing transformative changes and new partnerships
developing at institutions as they prepare to participate. This
consortium will spur innovation, integration, inclusion, and
dissemination -- not only among institutions receiving these awards -- but
at all organizations involved in health care throughout the

The CTSA initiative grew out of the NIH commitment to re-engineer the
clinical research enterprise, one of the key objectives of the NIH Roadmap
for Medical Research. The CTSA consortium will be led by the National
Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a part of the NIH.
Funding for the CTSA initiative comes from redirecting existing clinical
and translational programs, including Roadmap funds. Total first year
funding for the awards announced today will be approximately $100
million. When fully implemented in 2012, the initiative is expected to
provide a total of $500 million annually to 60 academic health centers.

The following institutions will receive the first set of awards for nearly
a five-year period:

Columbia University Health Sciences (New York, N.Y.)

Duke University (Durham N.C.)

Mayo Clinic College of Medicine (Rochester, Minn.)

Oregon Health & Science University (Portland, Ore.)

Rockefeller University (New York, N.Y.)

University of California, Davis (Davis. Calif.)

University of California, San Francisco (San Francisco, Calif.)

University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, Pa.)

University of Pittsburgh (Pittsburgh, Pa.)

University of Rochester (Rochester, N.Y.)

University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (Houston, Texas)

Yale University (New Haven, Conn.)

For complete project descriptions, please visit
<>. In
addition, the list of planning grant recipients is available at

A second Request for Applications (RFA) for CTSAs has been issued, calling
for the next round of submissions to be made by January 17, 2007, with
awards expected in fall 2007. The RFA is available at

The CTSA initiative was developed with extensive input from the research
community. For more information, visit

The NIH Roadmap for Medical Research is a series of far-reaching
initiatives designed to transform the Nation's medical research
capabilities and speed the movement of scientific discoveries from the
bench to the bedside. It provides a framework of the priorities the NIH
must address in order to optimize its entire research portfolio and lays
out a vision for a more efficient and productive system of medical
research. Additional information about the NIH Roadmap can be found at

NCRR provides laboratory scientists and clinical researchers with the
environments and tools they need to understand, detect, treat, and prevent
a wide range of diseases. With this support, scientists make biomedical
discoveries, translate these findings to animal-based
studies, and then apply them to patient-oriented research. Ultimately,
these advances result in cures and treatments for both common and rare
diseases. Through collaborations and networks, NCRR connects
researchers with one another, and with patients and communities across the
nation. These connections bring together innovative research teams and
the power of shared resources, multiplying the opportunities to improve
human health. For more information, visit

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- "The Nation's Medical
Research Agency" -- includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a
component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the
primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and
translational medical research, and it investigates the causes,
treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more
information about NIH and its programs, visit <>.


This NIH News Release is available online at:

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Old 10-05-2006, 04:16 AM #2
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Thumbs up thank you for the news -here is more PD news

Compounds That Stimulate Stem Cell Growth In The Brain Identified By Harvard Scientists
05 Sep 2006

Scientists at Harvard University have identified key compounds that stimulate stem cell growth in the brain, which may one day lead to restored function for people affected by Parkinson's disease, strokes, multiple sclerosis, and a wide range of neurological disorders. These findings, which appear in the September 2006 issue of The FASEB Journal, provide important clues as to which compounds may be responsible for causing key brain cells, neurons, to regenerate and ultimately restore brain function.

The research study focused on two compounds--LTB4 and LXA4. Both play a role in inflammation and are regulators of proliferation of several cell types. When stem cells isolated from the brains of mouse embryos were exposed to LTB4 they proliferated and differentiated, giving rise to additional stem cells and to differentiated neurons with limited or absent capacity to divide. When exposed to LXA4, these cells experienced decreased growth and apoptosis.

"This study opens doors to new therapeutic approaches for a wide range neurological disorders and injuries that were once considered incurable," said Gerald Weissmann, MD, Editor-in-Chief of The FASEB Journal.

The study also provided so insight into the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved when LTB4 stimulates neuronal stem cells. According to the study, cells generated as the result of LTB4 exposure had high levels of LTB4 receptors, whereas the level of LTB4 receptors was considerably lower in similar cells not generated by LTB4 stimulation. The investigators were further able to show that LTB4 up-regulated several molecules involved in cell cycling and growth, such as cyclins and epidermal growth factor receptor, and decreased those such as caspase 8 which play a role in apoptosis. LXA4 had the opposite effects.


The FASEB Journal ( is published by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) and is consistently ranked among the top three biology journals worldwide by the Institute for Scientific Information. FASEB comprises 21 nonprofit societies with more than 80,000 members, making it the largest coalition of biomedical research associations in the United States. FASEB's mission is to enhance the ability of biomedical and life scientists to improve - through their research - the health, well-being and productivity of all people. FASEB serves the interests of these scientists in those areas related to public policy, facilitates coalition activities among member societies and disseminates information on biological research through scientific conferences and publications.

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