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The Kenneth Rainin Foundation Continues its Commitment to Ending Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Awarding $1.5 Million in Research Grants

OAKLAND, Calif., Aug. 8, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Kenneth Rainin Foundation announced today that it has awarded 15 grants totaling $1.5 million for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) research through its Innovator and Breakthrough Awards Programs. The Foundation also hosted its second annual Innovations Symposium, attracting participants from the US and abroad, to promote scientific collaboration on future research projects. The Foundation invests in ground-breaking and collaborative ideas that have the potential to yield transformative discoveries and major new insights into the causes and cures for IBD.


"People suffering from IBD need a breakthrough and that's exactly what we're hoping to elicit with our programs," said Dr. Jennifer Rainin, president of the Kenneth Rainin Foundation. "We take risks and invest early in ways that other funders do not, and we look for researchers who take original and inventive approaches to IBD research," said Rainin. "Our health grant programs support research from all scientific disciplines and encourage collaboration to find new and better treatments for IBD. Every year promising projects are presented to the Foundation, increasing our optimism that eradicating IBD is possible."

Each Innovator Award recipient, selected from a competitive pool of applicants from non-profit research institutions worldwide, will receive a one year grant of $100,000. See for details.

The 2013 Innovator Awards Program recipients include:

  • Albert E. Jergens, D.V.M, Ph.D., Iowa State University, Ames, IA
  • Sean Fielding Brady, Ph.D., Rockefeller University, New York, NY
  • James D. Lord, M.D., Ph.D., Benaroya Research Institute, Seattle, WA
  • Jeffrey C. Rathmell, Ph.D., Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 
  • Alexander V.Chervonsky, M.D., Ph.D., The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Jose Henrique Veiga-Fernandes, D.V.M, Ph.D., Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Lisbon, Portugal
  • Bing Xu, Ph.D., Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

The Foundation's Breakthrough Awards Program for IBD Research provides additional support to Innovator grantees who have demonstrated significant progress in advancing their original research hypotheses. See for details.

The 2013 Breakthrough Award recipients, also receiving a one year grant of $100,000, are:

  • Dan Peer, Ph.D., Tel Aviv University, Israel, & Eran Elinav, M.D., Ph.D., Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, Israel
  • David Boone, Ph.D., University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
  • Gautam Dantas, Ph.D., Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO
  • Gwendalyn Randolph, Ph.D., Washington University, St. Louis, MO
  • Richard M. Maizels, Ph.D., Edinburgh University, UK
  • Samuel L. Miller, M.D., University of Washington, Seattle, WA
  • Thaddeus S. Stappenbeck, M.D., Ph.D., & Herbert W. Virgin, IV, M.D., Ph.D., Washington University Medical School, St. Louis, MO
  • Tiffany Horng, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Genetics & Complex Diseases, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA

Dr. Averil Ma, Chair of the Foundation's Scientific Advisory Board and Kenneth Rainin Distinguished Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, said, "Our funding strategies and annual Symposium challenge creative thinkers to pursue cutting edge research to further the understanding of IBD causes and cures, and our grants underscore our commitment to innovation. Over the next few years, the Foundation's allocation for health research will grow substantially, advancing our support for new discoveries and life-changing breakthroughs for people suffering from IBD."

Complementing its grant programs, the Foundation hosted its second annual Innovations Symposium in July, bringing together scientists from disparate fields of cell biology to encourage dialogue and spark new avenues of research for IBD. "The Foundation is pushing the boundaries of IBD research into new dimensions. Our Symposium fosters interactions between diverse investigators, and leverages our grantmaking at the same time." said Ma. Read more about the Symposium at the Foundation's Health Blog at

The Foundation's 2014 Innovations Symposium, Taming the Microbiome, will be in San Francisco in early June. Updates on our Symposium will be posted at  

About the Foundation

The Kenneth Rainin Foundation believes that people working to affect change need an early champion to further their ideas. Like our founder, we listen and invest in collaborative and innovative projects that advance the arts, education and health, because with our support, real breakthroughs can make life better for us all. Since 2006, the Foundation has awarded over $3 million to health researchers at some of the finest institutions in the US and abroad. The next grant cycle for the Innovator Awards Program is January 15 - February 15, 2014. More at  

SOURCE The Kenneth Rainin Foundation
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