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Weill Cornell receives $1.5 million in Grand Challenges Explorations grants
Date:11/2/2012

lorations Round 10, will be accepted through November 7, 2012.

Dr. Cubillos-Ruiz and his team's Phase I $100,000 funded research project will use a highly innovative nanopore-based assay to identify novel biomarkers reflecting the multifactorial processes that trigger potent HIV suppression. Dissecting these unique molecular signatures may enable the research team to design and develop improved clinical strategies for enhancing resistance against HIV. According to Dr. Cubillos-Ruiz, a small proportion of HIV infected individuals called "elite controllers" demonstrate "spontaneous" long-term control over the virus in the absence of treatment. However, the biological mechanisms underlying this important phenomenon remain poorly understood. Dr. Ruiz will work in close collaboration with other scientists at Weill Cornell, The Methodist Hospital in Houston and The Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard.

Dr. Nathan and his research team's Phase II $646,688 funded project will test their hypothesis that tuberculosis is able to exit latency by distributing damaged proteins to a senescent cell lineage, while more functional proteins are diverted to a lineage with full replication potential. His team believes regulating this post-latency cell division could be the target of novel drug therapies. Phase I of Dr. Nathan's study used biochemical methods and time lapse photomicroscopy to demonstrate that Mtb accumulates irreversibly oxidized proteins when its replication is blocked. These proteins then form small aggregates that fuse into larger ones. One member of the progeny pair retains the aggregates when cell division resumes. The new Phase II study will identify genes that control this process. Dr. Nathan's research team includes Weill Cornell's Julien Vaubourgeix and Dr. Gang Lin.

Dr. Rhee's Phase II $782,724 funded research project will test the theory that tuberculosis utilizes metabolosomes, which are protein-based metabolic structures, to ent
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Contact: Lauren Woods
law2014@med.cornell.edu
212-821-0560
New York- Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center/Weill Cornell Medical College
Source:Eurekalert

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