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Home is where the heart research is

  • 작성자한진
  • 작성일2006-07-27 10:02:59
  • 조회수3216
  • 첨부파일첨부파일
SDSU receives millions for first CSU program By: Stephanie Nehmens, Assistant City Editor Heart disease is the number one killer of men and women in the United States, but San Diego State is about to play a major role in fighting it. The SDSU Heart Institute received more than $10 million two weeks ago from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute for a coveted five-year program project grant, SDSU Vice President of Research Tom Scott said. The grant will support research to develop ways to protect the energy centers of heart cells, known as the mitochondria, during and after a heart attack. About 1.1 million people suffer from heart attacks each year, with more than 40 percent of them fatal, according to the NHBLI Web site. Heart attacks are caused by a lack of oxygen in the heart, and 90 percent of the oxygen a person breathes is used by the mitochondria, Scott said. If the arteries are clogged and blood cannot transport oxygen to the heart, attacks can occur. Biology department Chair Chris Glembotski said that when faced with trauma, the heart doesn't heal itself properly. "The inability of the heart to expel all of the blood properly causes heart failure and is what the researchers are trying to prevent with these studies," Glembotski said. To receive the grant, the principle investigator for the project, SDSU biology professor Mark Sussman, proposed a five-year study to the NHLBI a year and a half ago, which included a plan for himself and three research teams of doctors and students, ranging from undergraduate to postdoctoral, to study the heart's mitochondria. "SDSU puts forth more than 1,100 grant proposals per year," Scott said. "We've gotten larger grants before, but never one that was so highly competitive that brings this level of recognition. "Never before has a California State University campus been identified as the place where research focus should be addressed." Such grants are usually awarded to universities that are research-based, such as UCSD, Scott said. "(This will) bring (SDSU) more recognition as a research-based institution," Glembotski said. "It will give students working in the lab a chance to be a part of the most cutting-edge scientific studies and students in the classroom will be able to learn about the most cutting-edge science." The research for the grant is set to begin on Sept. 1, Sussman said, and there are seven components to the project, which include four researchers and others who will administrate the project. The four researchers are professors who have been given individual grants and include Sussman and Glembotski, as well as UCSD Pharmacology department Chair Joan Heller Brown and Scripps Research Institute professor of molecular and experimental medicine Roberta Gottlieb. Each person will focus on a different way mitochondria react to heart trauma. "The overall goal of the grant is to determine ways to protect the heart from the damage of a heart attack; and from what we've learned, we hope that, essentially, new drugs are going to be developed that will be able to protect people from the damage from a heart attack," Glembotski said.
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