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LRI awards wide-ranging research grants to drive next generation of scientific discovery in lupus
Date:3/8/2011

an Fairchild Professor at Rockefeller University and a co-chair of the LRI's Novel Research Task Force. "In addition to successful and productive research, the Institute has leveraged additional investment in lupus research, attracted fresh talent to the field, and validated the power of bold innovation to drive discovery in a complex disease."

This year's class of LRI researchers builds on the organization's achievements in its first decade, confirming that new ideas in lupus research emerge from a variety of places. The group includes promising young lupus scientists and leading international lupus experts as well as investigators from diverse backgrounds such as oncology, biophysics, biochemistry, dermatology, and crystallography.

Each $300,000 research grant was awarded after multiple rounds of highly-rigorous peer review by scientists on the LRI Scientific Board. Applicants were judged principally on novelty of the hypotheses, scientific quality, strength of approach, relevance to lupus, and likelihood of success.

Highlights from the Research Grants include:

  • Robert Winchester, M.D., Professor of Pediatrics, Medicine and Pathology at Columbia University in New York City, who is receiving his second LRI grant to examine a life-threatening condition called preeclampsia, in which pregnant women experience very high blood pressure that can lead to serious complications for the mother and child. Preeclampsia occurs in approximately 1 in 10 pregnancies among women with lupus.

    With LRI funding, Dr. Winchester will collaborate with a lupus pregnancy expert and rheumatologist to explore the novel hypothesis that preeclampsia in lupus is caused by a dramatically reduced number of immune system cells that encourage growth of the placenta. In a normal pregnancy, the reduction in immune system cells would be considered positive, but in lupus patients, this condition may lead to preeclampsia.

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Contact: Amanda Sellers
asellers@spectrumscience.com
202-955-6222
Spectrum
Source:Eurekalert

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