This new round of grants brings the total of research projects supported by the LRI to 42, the largest number of lupus scientists supported by private sector funding. LRI-funded grants include 28 devoted to novel research or brand new scientific hypotheses and methodologies, and 14 for Fellowship and Career Development awards, programs which are helping to build the pipeline of qualified scientists who will continue the progress in understanding and treating lupus.
"We were extremely pleased with the high caliber of novel research grant submissions we received from both established and new investigators, many of which have the potential to characterize biomarkers or predictors to identify patients with accelerating disease activity, and others which seek to identify new therapies," said Peter Lipsky, MD, scientific director, National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, NIH. "We expect that many of these will generate solid new hypotheses that will go on to receive additional funding from the NIH as was the case with the first round of LRI grants which received more than $7 million in extended funding."
Dr. Lipsky, who co-chaired the Peer Review Committee with Ann Marshak-Rothstein, Ph.D., professor of microbiology at Boston University School of Medicine, organized one of the most rigorous peer review systems to review the grant applications, with 20 of the top lupus researchers around the country participating.
The scientists who were awarded $225,000 grants are: