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University of Pittsburgh and French National Institute begin scientific collaboration

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"We are delighted to start this collaboration," said INSERM Chief Executive Christian Brechot. "This program marks the first joint laboratory established by INSERM in the United States."

Arthur S. Levine, M.D., senior vice chancellor, health sciences, and dean of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, hailed the joint project as a significant step forward in the increasing globalization of academic science.

"We at the University of Pittsburgh recognize that our colleagues are not just those we meet across the hall, but scientists who work around the world," said Dr. Levine. "We are committed to encouraging relationships and sharing expertise with researchers wherever they are to benefit health care and scientific discovery for everyone."

A two-day scientific seminar jointly organized by INSERM and the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Science and Technology Office of the French Embassy in Washington), which was recently held in Paris, provided an opportunity for researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and France to exchange results from their respective studies.

"We have some very interesting preliminary results concerning studies of multipotent stem cells in adults that indicate there may be a reservoir of these cells in the body," said Dr. Peault. Johnny Huard, Ph.D., associate professor of orthopaedics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, is working to characterize the cells, Dr. Peault said.

The future scope of the collaboration will expand beyond investigation of stem cells, however. Scientists from France and the University of Pittsburgh will be reviewing other programs such as hepatology, psychiatry, neurobiology, transplantation immunology and computational biology areas in which they already have found common interests.

This initiative is advantageous from several perspectives. Its novel approach allows a French researcher in the United States, Dr. Peault, to ma
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Contact: Michele Baum
baummd@upmc.edu
412-647-3555
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
13-Feb-2004


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