Navigation Links
NIH EUREKA grant awarded to University of Miami scientist

CORAL GABLES, FL (September 16, 2008)- A team of scientists headed by neuroscientist Dr. Akira Chiba has been awarded the first ever EUREKA grant by the National Institute of Health (NIH), to develop a technique that can lead to a new treatment for spinal cord injury. Dr. Chiba, a professor at the University of Miami's Department of Biology, and his collaborators plan to use a novel and groundbreaking process to enhance synapse formation or nerve regeneration.

Dr. Chiba's project focuses on developing nerve connectivity by applying tension to individual neurons. A collaborative work between Dr. Chiba and scientists at the University of Illinois yielded evidence that a mechanical force applied to nascent nerve synapses, or injured embryonic nerve cells initiates, enhances and repairs their connectivity.

"This FORCE (force orchestrated retrograde synaptic enhancement) mechanism is likely based on a property of cells conserved through evolution and, thus, has the potential to be applied widely, including in the field of regenerative medicine," said Chiba. "A Holy Grail of regenerative neuromedicine is spinal cord repair," he said. "It would be rash to predict that our project will solve the problem, but perhaps we can make a significant contribution to the solution."

The project is a multi-disciplinary effort that combines genetics, bioengineering, computational bioinformatics and nanotechnology. If successful, the research will introduce a new concept in the regeneration of central nervous system neurons after injury.

Dr. Chiba's study is one of 38 research projects that will be funded by the $42.2 million grant. Each will receive direct costs of approximately $200,000 per year for up to four years, in support of projects that could have an extraordinary influence on many areas of science.

"The EUREKA Program is a new effort from the National Institutes of Health specifically for exceptionally innovative projects that could have a major impact on biomedical research," said Edmund M. Talley, Ph.D., program director for the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes. "In the case of Dr.Chiba's team, if they are able to prove the importance of mechanical force in re-growing connections between neurons, and if they are able to determine the molecular events underlying this phenomenon, it could change our understanding of how brain injuries might be repaired," he said.

"Even though it would be just one piece in a giant puzzle, it could be key to developing therapies that would enhance the lives of millions of people worldwide."


Contact: Marie Guma-Diaz
University of Miami

Related biology news :

1. NYU Cancer Institute researcher among first NIH EUREKA award recipients
2. NIH EUREKA award funds research at WPI aimed at turning adult skin cells into stem-like cells
3. C. Erec Stebbins awarded prestigious EUREKA grant
4. Burnham researcher awarded $8 million grant
5. NSF awards two grants to Stevens for nano/micro device fabrication and nano sensor development
6. UT Knoxville wins 2 $3M National Science Foundation research and education grants
7. NYU receives $490k NSF grant to promote women in the sciences
8. Iowa State wins $18.5M grant to create NSF Center for Biorenewable Chemicals
9. Cornell gets $10 million NSF grant to establish new sustainability institute
10. NYU, American Museum of Natural History receive $1.6 million NSF grant
11. Broad Institute awarded grant to develop chemical probes for human biology and disease
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/29/2015)... Daon, a global leader in mobile biometric ... new version of its IdentityX Platform , IdentityX ... have already installed IdentityX v4.0 and are ... FIDO UAF certified server component as an option ... features. These customers include some of the largest and ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... -- Connected health pioneer, Joseph C. Kvedar , MD, ... and wellness, and the business opportunities that arise from ... of Healthy Things . Long before health and ... Kvedar, vice president, Connected Health, Partners HealthCare, was creating ... from the hospital or doctor,s office into the day-to-day ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... Oct. 29, 2015 Today, LifeBEAM ... partnership with 2XU, a global leader in technical ... smart hat with advanced bio-sensing technology. The hat ... to monitor key biometrics to improve overall training ... the two companies will bring together the most advanced ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... 24, 2015 Halozyme Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: HALO ) ... New York on Wednesday, December 2 at 9:30 ... president and CEO, will provide a corporate overview. th ... at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT . Jim ... provide a corporate overview. --> th Annual Oppenheimer ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... 2015 , ... International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE) closed ... events for pharmaceutical manufacturing: 2015 Annual Meeting. The conference took place in Philadelphia, ... number of attendees in more than a decade. , “The 2015 Annual ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... PUNE, India , November 24, 2015 ... to a new market research report "Oligonucleotide Synthesis Market ... Equipment), Application (PCR, Gene Synthesis, Diagnostic, DNA, RNAi), End-User ... to 2020", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market is expected ... 1,078.1 Million in 2015, at a CAGR of 10.1% ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , November 24, 2015 SHPG ) announced ... in the Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual Healthcare Conference in ... 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 p.m. GMT). --> ... Financial Officer, will participate in the Piper Jaffray 27 th ... NY on Tuesday, December 1, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. EST (1:30 ...
Breaking Biology Technology: