Research grants for diabetes research announced in the US

by Barbara Hewitt on February 17, 2014

The American Diabetes Association has launched what it calls a bold initiative to fund 100 new diabetes researchers over the next decade some of whom will be seeking to find a cure for the condition.

The ADA points out that nearly one in eight American adults is living with diabetes and diagnosed diabetes costs the nation $245 billion each year.


One in eight American adults is living with diabetes and diagnosed diabetes costs the nation $245 billion each year

‘The problem of diabetes is unprecedented, so our solution must match it. Through identifying and supporting innovative researchers, Pathway to Stop Diabetes is designed to radically transform diabetes research, setting us on the road to breakthrough discoveries, and ultimately a cure to this deadly disease,’ said Dr Ronald Kahn, chairman of the Pathway Mentor Advisory Group at the American Diabetes Association.

The ADA also points out that another 79 million people in the US are living with prediabetes so research into managing the condition is much needed.

It has announced the first group of researchers who will receive grant support through the programme for 2013 thanks to more than $7 million in gifts from individuals and $25 million in corporate support from pharmaceutical giants including Novo Nordisk, the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation and the AstraZeneca/Bristol Myers-Squibb Diabetes Alliance.

Candidates were identified through institutional nominations, where accredited US academic and nonprofit research institutions were asked to identify and put forward their most creative and brilliant scientists.

These scientists, who are just starting their careers in diabetes research, or who are already established in another field but want to expand their focus to diabetes research, were asked to propose creative and transformational ideas for diabetes research projects.

The awards got to Dr Joshua Thaler of the University of Washington in Seattle, Dr Kathleen Page of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, Dr Wolfgang Peti, PhD of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, Dr Michael Dennis of Pennsylvania State University, and Stephen Parker of the National Human Genome Research Institute, in Bethesda, Maryland.

Pathway awards will provide $1.625 million in support for five to seven years for the selected investigators and will fund research relevant to any diabetes type, diabetes related disease state or diabetes complication. Nominations included a broad range of disciplines, including medicine, biology, chemistry, engineering, physics and mathematics.

Pathway scientists were selected by the Association’s Pathway Mentor Advisory Group, a group of eminent scientists who selected the awardees using the core elements for exceptional science, rigorous thought processes, keen intellect, and the capacity for innovation and creativity. In addition to participating in the selection process, the Mentor Advisors will provide ongoing scientific and career advice to the selected scientists throughout the duration of the awards, creating a challenging environment for transformative science to thrive.

In addition to substantial and flexible financial support, and an environment of strong mentorship, Pathway will provide scientists with networks for communication and collaboration; special symposia and speaking engagements and unique collaborative opportunities that will accelerate the advancement and translation of their science, and lead to breakthrough discoveries.

‘We look forward to following the progress of the Pathway award researchers as they work to discover innovative treatment options and solutions to address a wide range of needs for patients living with the many burdens of diabetes,’ said Rich Daly, president of the US Diabetes Alliance.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

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