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Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis and American Thoracic Society Continue Research Partnership Through 2010

CPF and ATS to Jointly Award $200,000 in research funding

TORONTO, May 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF) and the American Thoracic Society (ATS), the world's leading professional organization for pulmonary, critical care and sleep physicians, today announced the expansion of their research partnership in pulmonary fibrosis. CPF and ATS are making available two new two-year, $100,000 awards for researchers in the United States pursuing new approaches to understand and treat pulmonary fibrosis.

"We'd like to express our gratitude to ATS for continuing a clinical partnership that is desperately needed in the research community to make new funds available to investigators dedicated to improving our understanding of IPF," said Marvin Schwarz, MD, James C. Campbell Professor of Pulmonary Medicine, Division of Pulmonary Sciences and Critical Care Medicine University of Colorado Denver and Chairman of the CPF Board of Directors.

ATS/CPF research awards are selected through a rigorous peer-review application process administered by ATS. Awards are selected from a series of applicants who submitted proposals in the areas of basic, clinical, genetic, and translational research that focus on identifying new approaches to understand or treating pulmonary fibrosis. The letter of intent deadline for the 2008 awards is 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time Wednesday, June 25, 2008 and the award recipients will be announced in December, 2008.

"We are proud to be able to match grants in this important area of research," said Thomas R. Martin, M.D., past president of ATS and Co-Chair of the ATS Research Program with Sharon Rounds. "The ATS continues its commitment to work with nationally recognized organizations like the CPF who are dedicated to advancing lung disease research."

The ATS/CPF Partnership Grant for Pulmonary Fibrosis was established in 2006. The first grant through this partnership was a $100,000, two-year award to Sonye K. Danoff, M.D., Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Danoff is currently in year two of her research entitled "VEGF: Marker or mediator of lung injury in pulmonary fibrosis?" Her research is currently testing the hypothesis that locally elevated levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in the lungs of patients with autoimmune pulmonary fibrosis contribute to disease progression. In December, 2007, Andrew M. Tager, M.D. of Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital was the recipient of a $100,000, two-year award to investigate the role of Lysophosphatidic Acid (LPA) and its cognate receptor LPA1 in lung injury and fibroproliferation following bleomycin treatment.

About Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF)

IPF is a lung disorder characterized by a progressive scarring -- known as fibrosis -- and deterioration of the lungs, which slowly robs its victims of their ability to breathe. Approximately 128,000 Americans suffer from IPF, which is the most prevalent of a classification of lung disorders known as interstitial lung diseases (ILD's). There is currently no known cause or cure for IPF, nor is there an FDA-approved treatment. An estimated 48,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. IPF is difficult to diagnose, and an estimated two- thirds of patients die within five years of diagnosis.

About the Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis

The Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis (CPF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, founded in 2001 to accelerate research efforts leading to a cure for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), while educating, supporting, and advocating for the community of patients, families, and medical professionals fighting this disease. The CPF funds promising research into new approaches to treat and cure pulmonary fibrosis; provides patients and families with comprehensive education materials, resources, and hope; serves as a voice for national advocacy of IPF issues; and works to improve awareness of IPF in the medical community as well as the general public. The CPF's nonprofit partners include many of the most respected medical centers and healthcare organizations in the U.S. With more than 15,000 members nationwide, the CPF is the largest nonprofit organization in the U.S. dedicated to advocating for those with pulmonary fibrosis. For more information please visit or call (888) 222-8541.

About the American Thoracic Society

The American Thoracic Society (ATS) is a non-profit, international, professional and scientific society for respiratory, critical care and sleep medicine. The ATS is committed globally to the prevention and treatment of respiratory disease through research, education, patient care and advocacy. The long-range goal of the ATS is to decrease morbidity and mortality from respiratory disorders and life threatening acute illnesses in people of all ages. In keeping with these goals, the American Thoracic Society interacts with both national and international organizations which have similar goals. For more information please visit

SOURCE Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis
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