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Rutgers University launches neuroscience consortium
Date:7/8/2013

hold as scientists who may not have worked together previously become Rutgers colleagues.

And with President Obama calling for a multibillion-dollar plan to map the human brain to understand its complexities and unlock the mysteries of debilitating neurodegenerative diseases, many neuroscientists say Rutgers is positioning itself to be a university at the forefront of such research.

Building a Bridge

This is a good start, say those involved with the development of the new consortium. But too much information critical to discovering preventive treatments and possible cures is still falling under the radar of many who could benefit from the data, says Marco Zarbin, professor and chair of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science at New Jersey Medical School in Newark. Zarbin has done research to develop treatments for retinal eye disease through cell transplantation.

"We end up in our own little silos," says Zarbin, a member of the consortium, who insists that scientists and physicians have become so specialized that fewer collaborations necessary for big scientific discoveries are occurring. "The great thing now about the new Rutgers is that intellectually we have all the different skills needed to do big things in both science and medicine."

Moving forward, Suhayl Dhib-Jalbut, professor and chair of the Department of Neurology at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, says a virtual neuroscience institute needs to be created to connect the neuroscience programs at Rutgers to its medical schools and make access to information seamless. This means developing a robust website through which information about both the work being done at the university and critical funding mechanisms for neuroscience research could be easily accessed by researchers, faculty, and students.

"What we have to do is bring basic science and clinical trials together by creating a structure that allows us to get this done so
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Contact: Robin Lally
rlally@ur.rutgers.edu
732-932-7084 x652
Rutgers University
Source:Eurekalert

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