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Life Sciences Discovery Fund awards health research project grants

Seattle (August 5, 2008) Six Washington State-based life sciences organizations and their partners will receive health research project grants totaling $5 million, the Life Sciences Discovery Fund announced today. The newly-funded health research endeavors will concentrate on prostate cancer imaging, safer in-home environments for older and disabled adults, recovery from brain damage, soft tissue calcification, pain localization and diagnostic smart cards (See Backgrounder Information).

The Life Sciences Discovery Fund awardees are: Clifford Berkman, Washington State University; Diane Cook, Washington State University; Eberhard Fetz, University of Washington; Cecilia Giachelli, University of Washington; Pierre Mourad, University of Washington; and Patrick Stayton, University of Washington.

"The six new Life Sciences Discovery Fund grant awardees have assembled projects that encourage public-private enterprise and demonstrate their organization's agility in organizing such collaborative teams. Collectively, they are addressing a wide spectrum of innovative research opportunitiesfrom inventive neurochip applications to novel health care delivery solutionsthat hold strong health and economic prospects for Washington State," said Executive Director Lee Huntsman.

The grantees were selected by the Life Sciences Discovery Fund Board of Trustees from among 86 proposals that were evaluated by national experts convened by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In a highly competitive process the proposals were weighted on their scientific merits and their abilities to utilize the funding to provide statewide economic returns, to build a competitive life sciences industry and to advance health care for Washingtonians.

Overall, grant applicants are responding positively and creatively to the Life Sciences Discovery Fund's focus on health care and economic development, according to Board Chair Lura Powell. "Potential grantees are refining their proposals in the context of the Fund's purpose and giving serious consideration about how to bring benefits to Washington through translation and commercialization," she said.

Funding for these grant projects comes from Washington's allocation of bonus payments under the Master Tobacco Settlement, revenues arising from multi-state litigation with tobacco product manufacturers. This group of awardees is the second to be funded through the tobacco settlement mechanism.

The Life Sciences Discovery Fund, a Washington State agency established in May 2005, makes grant investments in innovative life sciences research to benefit Washington and its citizens.


Contact: Dianne Needham
Life Sciences Discovery Fund

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