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Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis and American Thoracic Society Continue Commitment to Pulmonary Fibrosis Research

CPF Commits to ATS to Fund Four New 2-Year Grants Totaling $400,000

SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 25 /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 that the CPF will again partner with the ATS to fund Pulmonary Fibrosis (PF) research.  The CPF and the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation (PFF) will each commit $200,000 to co-fund four two-year research grants and the ATS will provide management of the grants.

"We are happy to continue this important partnership with ATS," said Marvin Schwarz, M.D., Chairman of the CPF and the James C. Campbell Professor of Medicine at the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine.   "We are making progress in the disease at an impressive rate and working with the ATS to fund the most promising research is critical."

Research in PF has been minimal historically compared with research into other diseases, including diseases that affect fewer Americans and that are not imminently deadly like PF.  The CPF is committed to increasing the amount of research in PF by contributing directly to PF research efforts.  

"We thank the CPF for their commitment to the ATS Research Program," said Sharon Rounds, M.D., past president of ATS and chair of the ATS Scientific Advisory Committee. "Through our partnership with the CPF, we are able to advance the careers of young investigators conducting groundbreaking research in Pulmonary Fibrosis."

Past CPF/ATS Partnership Awards have been granted to:

  • Sonye K. Danoff, M.D., Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University: "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.
  • Andrew Tager, M.D., Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School in the Pulmonary and Critical Care Division and at Massachusetts General Hospital: (LPA) and its Receptor LPA1" – His study is  investigating the role of Lysophosphatidic Acid (LPA) and its cognate receptor LPA1 in lung injury and fibroproliferation following bleomycin treatment.
  • Harikrishna Tanjore, Ph.D. in the Center for Lung Research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center: The study's purpose was to determine the extent to which epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) contributes to lung fibrosis and to investigate the role of TGF-beta in EMT in the lungs.
  • Melissa Hunter Piper, Ph.D. at the Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute at Ohio State University who studied whether the loss of the expression of miR-17-92 (microRNA) cluster contributes to the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis.

The ATS/CPF Partnership Grant for Pulmonary Fibrosis was established in 2006.

CPF and ATS intend to continue expanding this important partnership by establishing, in conjunction with the PFF, the two-year grants to be awarded in September 2010 to advance PF research efforts in the United States.

For investigators interested in applying for these PF grants, letter of intent grant applications must be submitted by March 15, 2010 at 9:00 am Eastern Time.  For more information, visit the ATS website at  To apply please go to the proposal CENTRAL website at

About Pulmonary Fibrosis (PF)

Pulmonary Fibrosis (PF) 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 PF, and there is currently no known cause or cure. An estimated 48,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. PF is difficult to diagnose and an estimated two-thirds of patients die within five years of diagnosis.  Sometimes PF can be linked to a particular cause, such as certain environmental exposures, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, residual infection, or autoimmune diseases such as scleroderma or rheumatoid arthritis. However, in many instances, no known cause can be established. When this is the case, it is called idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

About the CPF

The CPF is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, founded in 2001 to accelerate research efforts leading to a cure for pulmonary fibrosis (PF), 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 PF; provides patients and families with comprehensive education materials, resources, and hope; serves as a voice for national advocacy of PF issues; and works to improve awareness of PF 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 19,000 members nationwide, the CPF is the largest nonprofit organization in the U.S. dedicated to advocating for those with PF. 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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SOURCE Coalition for Pulmonary Fibrosis
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