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NIH grants $33 M in institutional development awards to 3 states

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announced today it has provided nearly $33 million to fund three new Institutional Development Awards (IDeA). The awards support multidisciplinary centers each concentrating on one general area of research that strengthen institutional biomedical research capability and enhance research infrastructure. The IDeA program is designed to improve the competitiveness of investigators in states that historically have not received significant levels of competitive NIH research funding.

The new centers are being established at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center to study diabetes (especially in the Native American populations); Rhode Island Hospital to study cartilage, joint health, and repair mechanisms; and University of Kansas Medical Center to study molecular regulation of cell development and differentiation.

By bridging the research funding gap in IDeA states, we are building innovative research teams, strengthening partnerships with the community, and leveraging the power of shared resources ultimately improving the nations health, said NIH Director Elias A. Zerhouni, M.D. It is through this multidisciplinary approach that we can reduce health disparities and improve our disease prevention efforts in states that have limited resources.

Through the IDeA program, NCRR supports institutions and communities in 23 states and Puerto Rico with grants that fund multiple areas of biomedical research and reach out to unique populations. Each grant fulfills five goals:

  • To build and strengthen the research capabilities at participating institutions by hiring staff and purchasing research equipment;
  • To support faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students;
  • To provide research opportunities for undergraduate students;
  • To develop outreach activities; and
  • To enhance the science and technology knowledge of the states workforce.

Each award includes a principal investigator with established credentials relevant to the centers research theme; three to five individual research projects that share that theme and are supervised by a single junior investigator; and a development and mentoring plan that will prepare these investigators to secure competitive federal research funding.

For states to compete on a national level for federal research dollars, we need to lay the foundation at the undergraduate level as well as partner with the local community to effect change, said NCRR Director Barbara M. Alving, M.D. By funding intellectual development and enhancing research infrastructure in these IDeA states, we are producing a pipeline of homegrown researchers who will become future leaders in competing for these federal dollars.

New IDeA Awards:

For full descriptions of the following IDeA centers, visit

University of Kansas Medical Center (Kansas City, Kan.)
$11 million
Molecular Regulation of Cell Development and Differentiation
Principal Investigator: Dale R. Abrahamson, Ph.D.

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (Oklahoma City, Okla.)
$11 million
Mentoring Diabetes Research in Oklahoma
Principal Investigator: Jian-Xing Ma, M.D., Ph.D.

Rhode Island Hospital (Providence, R.I.)
$11 million
Center of Biomedical Research Excellence for Skeletal Health and Repair
Principal Investigator: Qian Chen, Ph.D.


Contact: NCRR Communications
NIH/National Center for Research Resources  

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