Navigation Links
UCLA scientist awarded $3 million to fund research into proteins affecting the kidney
Date:4/1/2014

UCLA Scientist Dr. Ira Kurtz has received a $3 million gift from the Donald T. Sterling Foundation to fund research on the structural properties of key proteins in the kidney that affect its function in health and disease. His ultimate aim is the discovery of new molecular approaches, which will aid in the development of drugs to treat patients with various kidney disorders.

"This gift will play a key role in accelerating the success of ongoing research projects in my lab," said Kurtz, a professor of medicine, who holds the Factor Chair in nephrology and serves as chief of the division of nephrology at UCLA. "There is currently a worldwide epidemic of kidney disease today. More than 500 million people worldwide have some form of kidney damage. Millions of people are affected and die each year, and a disproportionate number in the Unites States are African Americans, Latinos and other minorities."

A major goal of Kurtz's basic research program is to understand the fundamental biological processes affecting kidney function at the molecular level. One of the focuses of his lab is to unravel the atomic structure of various proteins in the kidney that contribute to kidney disease.

The proteins he studies reside either in the plasma membrane surrounding the cell, called membrane proteins, or are located inside the cell in the cytoplasm, called soluble proteins. He and his team utilize a range of methodologies, including x-ray crystallography, biochemical, cell and molecular biology, and genetic approaches to understand the structure and functional properties of kidney proteins.

By closely studying the structure of both membrane and soluble kidney proteins, Kurtz and his team hope to be able to design new therapeutics that target specific disease-causing proteins, while leaving other normal proteins unaffected.

"Determining the structure of these disease-causing proteins is vital for designing very specific drugs," he said. "If we are successful, we have the great benefit of being able to use much lower doses of a particular drug, which is very beneficial to patients, since side effects and unwanted symptoms are significantly reduced."

In the United States alone, more than 25 million people suffer from some degree of kidney function impairment, and more than 600,000 patients are on dialysis or have received a kidney transplant at a cost of more than $32 billion annually to taxpayers, Kurtz said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Kim Irwin
kirwin@mednet.ucla.edu
310-794-2262
University of California - Los Angeles Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Behind the scenes of the IPCC report, with Stanford scientists
2. Scripps Florida scientists offer best practices nutrition measurement for researchers
3. Notre Dame scientists develop largest developmental proteomic data set for any animal
4. Research from CHORI scientists demonstrates first genome methylation in fruit fly
5. Harvard scientists visualize new treatments for retinal blindness
6. ASU scientist Roy Curtiss receives Lifetime Achievement Award from ASM
7. A*STAR scientists create stem cells from a drop of blood
8. Freiburg scientist is awarded the Paul Ehrlich and Ludwig Darmstaedter Prize
9. Plant biology discovery furthers scientists understanding of plant growth and development
10. Tropical grassy ecosystems under threat, scientists warn
11. Scientists herd cells in new approach to tissue engineering
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
UCLA scientist awarded $3 million to fund research into proteins affecting the kidney
(Date:7/20/2017)... Delta (NYSE: DAL ) customers now can use fingerprints instead ... National Airport (DCA). ... Delta launches biometrics to board aircraft at Reagan Washington National Airport ... Delta,s biometric boarding pass experience that launched in ... the boarding process to allow eligible Delta SkyMiles Members who are enrolled ...
(Date:6/23/2017)... ITHACA, N.Y. , June 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... leader in dairy research, today announced a new collaboration ... reduce the chances that the global milk supply is ... dairy project, Cornell University has become the newest academic ... Supply Chain, a food safety initiative that includes IBM ...
(Date:5/23/2017)... , May 23, 2017  Hunova, the first robotic gym for the ... been officially launched in Genoa, Italy . The first ... and the USA . The technology was developed ... market by the IIT spin-off Movendo Technology thanks to a 10 million ... News Release, please click: ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/10/2017)... , ... October 10, 2017 ... ... cancer-focused pharmaceutical company advancing targeted antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) therapeutics, today confirmed licensing ... HPLN (Hybrid Polymerized Liposomal Nanoparticle), a technology developed in collaboration with Children’s ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... October 10, 2017 , ... USDM ... firm for the life sciences and healthcare industries, announces a presentation by Subbu ... , The presentation, “Automating GxP Validation for Agile Cloud Platforms,” will present a ...
(Date:10/9/2017)... ... October 09, 2017 , ... The Giving ... marijuana products targeting the needs of consumers who are incorporating medical marijuana into ... in Phoenix, Arizona. , As operators of two successful Valley dispensaries, The Giving ...
(Date:10/6/2017)... , ... October 06, 2017 , ... ... within the healthcare and technology sector at their fourth annual Conference where founders, ... 30 inspiring speakers and the ELEVATE pitch competition showcasing early stage digital health ...
Breaking Biology Technology: