Weldon Researchers Receive CTSI Grants

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This fall, researchers at the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering received more than $150,000 from the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI), a National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded organization that supports Indiana university-led research projects that aim to speed transformation of novel scientific discoveries into medical treatments and therapies.

Two Purdue researchers received grants through the Collaboration in Translational Research (CTR) grant program. CTR grants are designed to help scientists conduct early-stage research projects that may attract larger grant awards from external sources, such as the NIH. To foster collaboration, the program required that each grant proposal include participation from scientists from two or more sponsoring academic campuses: Purdue, Indiana University-Bloomington, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, the Indiana School of Medicine and the University of Notre Dame. The recipients and their projects are:

Ji-Xin Cheng, of the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, and Shaoxiong Chen, of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, IU School of Medicine, will receive $74,000 to support their project titled, "Prevention of Pancreatic Cancer Metastasis by Abrogating Cholesterol Metabolism." Additional project collaborators include Jingwu Xie, of the IU School of Medicine.

Bumsoo Han, School of Mechanical Engineering and Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, and Kinam Park, also of the Weldon School, and Jian-Ting Zhang, of the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, IU School of Medicine, will receive $75,000 to support their project titled, "Rapid screening of drugs for multidrug resistant cancers using a new tumor-microenvironment-on-chip platform."

Craig Goergen, Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, will receive $10,000 through the core pilot grant program. Core pilot grants provide investigators access to more than 60 Indiana CTSI-approved core facilities across the IU, Purdue, and Notre Dame campuses. Goergen is granted access to the Transgenic Mouse Core at Purdue in support of his project titled, "Creation of apolipoprotein E-deficient rats for the study of cardiovascular disease."

The Indiana CTSI is a statewide collaboration of IU, Purdue and Notre Dame, as well as public and private partnerships that facilitate the translation of scientific discoveries in the lab into clinical trials and new patient treatments in Indiana and beyond. 

It was established in 2008 with a $25 million Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Center for Research Resources of the NIH, and with nearly $60 million from the state, the three member universities, and public and private donors. The Indiana CTSI is a member of a national network of 55 CTSA-funded organizations across the United States.