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$7.3 million NIH grant establishes Wellstone Muscular Dystrophy Research Center at the UI

The University of Iowa has received a five-year, $7.3 million grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to establish a Paul D. Wellstone Muscular Dystrophy Cooperative Research Center. The lead investigator is Kevin Campbell, Ph.D., the Roy J. Carver Chair of Physiology and Biophysics and department head in the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator.

The UI center commemorates Sen. Paul Wellstone (D-Minn.) who died in 2002. Wellstone was a vocal supporter of research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy. In 2001, he introduced the Muscular Dystrophy Community Assistance, Research, and Education Amendments, signed into law in December 2001, mandating that the NIH establish centers of excellence for basic and clinical research into Duchenne and other forms of muscular dystrophy. After Wellstone's death, these centers were named in his honor. The center at the UI is the fourth such center to be funded by the NIH.

Campbell, who also is a UI professor of internal medicine and neurology, will be director of the UI center and Steven Moore, M.D., Ph.D., UI professor of pathology, will be co-director. Center researchers from clinical and basic science departments in the UI Carver College of Medicine and the UI College of Public Health will conduct three projects and run three core facilities. Studies and facilities will explore basic biological mechanisms that relate to possible treatments for muscular dystrophies, facilitate translational research on muscular dystrophies and provide advanced diagnostic services to patients and clinical trial participants.

"The Wellstone Centers promote basic, translational and clinical research on all forms of muscular dystrophy by providing resources and fostering collaboration by neuromuscular researchers nationwide," Campbell said. "We were successful in our bid to establish a W
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Contact: Jennifer Brown
jennifer-l-brown@uiowa.edu
319-335-9917
University of Iowa
1-Jul-2005


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