Parent: NIH funding increased by nearly $10 million

Leslie J. Parent, MD, vice dean for research and graduate studies, sent an email on Monday to faculty and staff at Penn State College of Medicine:

Dear Colleagues,

As we begin a new academic year, I invite you to join me in celebrating the accomplishments of our research teams for their dedication to discoveries that can improve lives. Last year, we increased our National Institutes of Health funding by nearly $10 million. Our overall funding increased to more than $98M – a 9.7 percent increase. These funds, which support our biomedical research, will allow us to impact and enhance health care in Central PA and around the world.

Our investigative teams are studying how ovarian cancer spreads, leading to novel ways to treat our patients. We are investigating risk factors for neurological diseases like Parkinson’s Disease to develop prevention strategies. Our scientists are inventing innovative methods to image organisms in 3D at the cellular level, which could lead to more accurate diagnoses and more precise therapies. We are helping to uncover how our genetic makeup can influence health and disease.  We are identifying risk factors for depression so more effective screening can be developed.

Teamwork is critical for us to understand how health problems arise, to develop innovative diagnostic tools and find new treatments. All research team members play an integral role – from designing experiments, performing data analyses, submitting grant proposals, managing finances, ensuring compliance, and maintaining our equipment, laboratories and clinical spaces. We also can’t thank our patients who participate in clinical trials enough – they are selflessly engaged in research that paves the way for better outcomes for those who follow.

New institutional resources like the Mock Grant Review (MoRe) Program, the Staffing Mentoring and Research Training program (SMaRT) and the Clinical Research Guidebook assist researchers beginning at the conception of a project through the conduct of the study. Research Development and the Clinical and Translational Science Institute identify funding opportunities, award pilot funding for new projects, and assist faculty in applying for large center and training grants. The Center for Medical Innovation works with investigators to share their novel technologies with the world.

Congratulations and thank you to everyone who supports our research that impacts the world. Our commitment to improving the future of health care is inspiring!

With appreciation,

Leslie J. Parent, MD
Vice Dean for Research and Graduate Studies

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