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4 projects awarded Discovery Transformation Grant funding by Minnesota Partnership
Date:8/12/2013

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.--The Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics announced four research projects selected for funding from the 2013 Discovery Transformation Grant Program. Together, the selected researchers were awarded a total of $2 million to support their work in diabetes research. Minnesota Partnership funding comes from money appropriated by the Minnesota Legislature

With an eye on funding projects with the highest potential for transformative results, the selection process for the Discovery Transformation Grant Program was extremely rigorous, say Partnership leaders. It involved both a review of proposed projects' scientific rationale and feasibility as well as an assessment of their intellectual property and commercialization potential. While the process was led by the University of Minnesota and Mayo Clinic, each project was also reviewed by external experts as well as a scientific advisory panel made up of globally-prominent experts in diabetes research. The comprehensive review process is aimed at developing a portfolio of projects that will contribute meaningfully to the development of new therapies for diabetes management and prevention.

The projects selected for funding are:

Insulin Gene Therapy for Diabetes: Insulin gene therapy is a conceptually simple and feasible approach to diabetes management that, if successful, could replace long-acting insulin injections both in Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. The investigators have created gene therapy vectors coding for insulin and a stop signal that can be activated by giving a drug, so production can be controlled. Based upon encouraging preclinical results, the current project is designed to rapidly advance the new vector to clinical testing in insulin-dependent patients with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

The principal investigators of this research project are Stephen Russell, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the Department of Molecular Medicin
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Contact: Bob Nellis
newsbureau@mayo.edu
507-284-5005
Mayo Clinic
Source:Eurekalert

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