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Thursday, July 21, 2011

State awards $9.8 million for stem cell research; Yale, UConn big winners

Adapted from a press release from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's office:


Twenty stem cell researchers were awarded a total of $9.8 million by the state Stem Cell Research Advisory Committee at its Tuesday grant review meeting in Farmington, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced today.


The grants included $500,000 to expand the Human Embryonic Stem Cell Core Facilities at the Yale Stem Cell Center. Eight Yale investigators also received funds.


Seventy-nine applications were accepted for consideration in January. The Connecticut Stem Cell Research Peer Review Committee reviewed these applications in accordance with National Institutes of Health guidelines and provided its recommendations to the advisory committee with respect to the scientific merits of each application.


“These awards signal Connecticut’s commitment to stem cell research and the life sciences sector,” Malloy said in a statement. “Connecticut continues to conduct some of the finest stem cell research in the country, and these awardees further demonstrate Connecticut’s promise as a leader in bioscience.”


This year’s awardees submitted a wide range of research projects ranging from basic stem cell research to a new disease directed category of grants which are closer to clinical application,” said Dr. Jewel Mullen, chairwoman of the advisory committee and commissioner of the state Department of Public Health. “I applaud the committee members for their commitment to this important effort.”


The following awards were made:

  • Identification of novel targets abnormally expressed in Prader-Willi Syndrome

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Kristin Martins-Taylor, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • Regulation of mRNA stability and translation in pluripotent and differentiated hES cells

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Alissa Resch, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • Single Cell Molecular Signatures for Hematopoietic Differentiation of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

Yale University, New Haven, Rong Fan, Principal Investigator, $195,251

  • Role of Kalirin, a risk factor for schizophrenia, in human stem cells

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Xin-Ming Ma, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • The Role of Endocardial Cells in Human Down Syndrome-Related Heart Defects

Yale University, New Haven, Peter Amos, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • Role of the histone variant H2A.X in the establishment of the epigenetic landscape of human embryonic stem cells

Yale University, New Haven, Pascal Drane, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • MicroRNA mediated derivation of hemapoietic stem cells from human embryonic stem cells

Yale University, New Haven, Shangqin Guo, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • Investigation of gene expression adaptations to alcohol in iPS cell derived neural cultures from alcohol dependent control subjects

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Jonathan Covault, Principal Investigator, $196,836

  • Identification and purification of smooth muscle cells from differentiating human embryonic stem cells for vascular tissue engineering

Yale University, New Haven, Sumati Sundaram, Principal Investigator, $200,000

  • Cytoplasmic dsRNA response in human embryonic stem cells

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Gordon Carmichael, Principal Investigator, $750,000

  • Devising a multidisciplinary approach for the treatment of articular cartilage damage using human ESC-derived chondrocytes

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Hicham Drissi, Principal Investigator, $650,000

  • Phosphorylation Dynamics of Pluripotent Stem Cells

University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, David Han, Principal Investigator, $570,000

  • Pulsatile tissue-engineered grafts for surgical correction of single ventricle cardiac anomalies

Yale University, New Haven, Yibing Qyang, Principal Investigator, $375,000

  • Mechanisms of RNA Surveillance in Human Embryonic Stem Cells

Yale University, New Haven, Sandra Wolin, Principal Investigator, $750,000

  • Differentiation of human iPSC and ES into functional neurons

Yale University, New Haven, Flora Vaccarino, Principal Investigator, $744,446

  • Elucidating the development and disease of cortical motor neuron using human pluripotent stem cells

UConn Health Center, Farmington, Xue Jun Li, Principal Investigator, $337,470

  • Angiogenesis of Embryonic Stem Cell Derived Hippocampus Transplants

Wesleyan University, Middletown, Laural Grabel, Principal Investigator, $750,000

  • Development of a Potential Therapy for Osteoarthritic Cartilage Damage using hESC-derived Chondrogenic Cells

Chondrogenics, Inc., Farmington, Caroline Dealy, Principal Investigator, $1,290,499

  • Continued Operation and Expansion of the Human Embryonic Stem Cell Core Facilities at the Yale Stem Cell Center

Yale University, New Haven, Haifan Lin, Principal Investigator, $500,000

  • Stem Cell Approaches for Defining Patient-specific Predisposition to Idiosyncratic Drug-induced Liver Injury

University of Connecticut, Storrs, Urs Boelsterli, Principal Investigator, $1,290,499

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