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MSU becoming center of excellence for Parkinson's research
Date:10/14/2009

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. A team of researchers from Michigan State University and the University of Cincinnati have been awarded a $6.2 million Morris K. Udall Center of Excellence for Parkinson's disease grant.

The grant, from the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke at the National Institutes of Health, makes MSU's College of Human Medicine a major player in research of the degenerative disease.

Two new MSU researchers, Jack Lipton, Ph.D., and Caryl E. Sortwell, Ph.D., will share nearly half of the award with investigators at the University of Cincinnati. The process of transferring control of the Udall Center to MSU will begin next summer when center Director Timothy Collier, PhD., and Kathy Steece-Collier, Ph.D., from the University of Cincinnati join Lipton, Sortwell and the rest of the research team at MSU's College of Human Medicine in Grand Rapids.

The MSU scientists will conduct their Parkinson's disease research in the new Van Andel Institute Phase II expansion. The recruitment of the research team was made possible by College of Human Medicine partners Van Andel Institute, Spectrum Health and Saint Mary's Health Care.

"The Udall Center of Excellence designation brought to MSU by our new Parkinson's disease research cluster speaks to the caliber of researchers we are able to recruit to Grand Rapids because of our unique health science partnerships," said Marsha Rappley, dean of the College of Human Medicine. "By the time the entire Parkinson's research group and their families are relocated to Grand Rapids, we'll have a team of eight investigators at the Udall Center."

The center investigators have varied skills and backgrounds in research, yet they operate as a cohesive team, Rappley said. The team-based approach to science is one of the great strengths of the research group.

"The skills of our group span from subcellular aspects of molecular biology through behavioral changes i
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Contact: Jason Cody
codyja@msu.edu
517-432-0924
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert

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