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The Parkinsonís Disease Foundation has announced five additional research awards for the year beginning July 1, 2001. This new wave brings to 23 the total number of awards made by the Foundationís International Research Grants Program for the forthcoming fiscal year.

These awards, which average $35,000, cover a wide range of basic and applied research initiatives designed to provide clues to understanding the cause, charting the cure and managing the progress of Parkinsonís disease, a degenerative neurological condition that afflicts as many as one million Americans and many more around the world. The awards were announced by Stanley Fahn, M.D., the Foundationís scientific director, following a Board Meeting on April 10 in which some $475,000 in additional funds for research was approved. Approximately $140,000 of the new funds will be for the four new awards. The balance of about $335,000 will be set aside for new research opportunities, including a possible new matching-funds initiative from the National Institutes of Health.

These new awards, when combined with the earlier ďcenterĒ grants to Columbia University and Cornell University in New York and Rush-Presbyterian St. Lukeís Medical Center in Chicago, bring the total of research funds distributed to date by PDF in the current fiscal year (which ends June 30, 2001) to some $3.5 million.

The final wave of 20 awards, which was announced April 5, included one from a scientist who received a duplicate award for the same project from another foundation. She has since declined the PDF award. In addition, one of the scientists from the additional awards received a duplicate award and has declined the PDF award. The total of recipients is now 23.

Names of all the 23 awardees and their projects follow:

Investigator: Ottavio Arancio, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: The Nathan S. Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, NY Project: Alpha-synuclein Involvement inTransmitter Release Award: $35,000

Investigator: Anna M. Barrett, M.D. Institution: Penn State College of Medicine, PA Project: Do Visual Attention and Imagery Deficits Affect Driving in Parkinsonism? Award: $35,000

Investigator: Richard Camicioli, M.D. Institution: University of Alberta Project: Genetic Modulation of Clinical Course in Pathologically Proven Parkinsonís Disease Award: $34,874

Investigator: Lee Anna Cunningham, Ph.D. Institution: University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, NM Project: Bone Marrow Stem Cell Delivery of GDNF in MPTP Mice Award: $33,854

Investigator: Anthone W. Dunah, Ph.D. Institution: The General Hospital Corporation d/b/a Massachusetts General Hospital Project: Dopamine Receptor Dependent Subcellular Trafficking of NMDG Glutamate Receptors in Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: Andrea Giuffrida, Ph.D. Institution: University of California Ė Irvine, CA Project: Role of Endogenous Cannibinoids in L-DOPA Dykinesias Award: $35,000

Investigator: Yi He, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: Baylor College of Medicine, TX Project: Role of Minocycline in the Inhibition of Microglial Activation and Protection of Dopaminergic Neurons in 6-OHDA Induced Parkinsonian Animal Model Award: $35,000

Investigator: Tamara Hershey, Ph.D. Institution: Washington University, School of Medicine Project: Neural Modulation of Working Memory by Levodopa in Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: Un Jung Kang, MD Institution: The University of Chicago, IL Project: The Effects of Tetrahydrobiopterin on Oxidative Stress and Mitochondrial Function Award: $35,000

Investigator: Christine Klein, M.D. Institution: Medical University of Luebeck, Germany Project: Evaluation of a Large Cohort of Patients with Sporadic or Familial Parkinsonís Disease for Involvement of the Parkin Gene Award: $32,420

Investigator: Julie Lotharius, Ph.D. Institution: Lund University, Sweden Project: Do Mutations in the Alpha-synuclein Gene Cause Dopamine-dependent Oxidative Stress and Neurodegeneration in a Genetic Model of Parkinsonís Disease? Award: $35,000

Investigator: Jau-Shin Lou, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: Oregon Health Sciences University Project: Characterizing the Effects of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Frequency and Intensity on Cortical Excitability and Physical Fatigue in Patients with Parkinsonís Disease Award: $33,093

Investigator: Walter C. Low, Ph.D. Institution: University of Minnesota, MN Project: Conversion of Human Adult Bone Marrow Stem Cells into Dopamine Neurons Award: $34,700

Investigator: Allen S. Mandir, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: The John Hopkins University, School of Medicine Project: Mechanisms of Programmed Cell Death in a Model of Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: Ivar Mendez, M.D., Ph.D., FRCSC, FACS Institution: Dalhousie University, Novia Scotia Project: Multiple Target Sites for Neural Transplantation in the Rat Model of Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: David S. Park, Ph.D. Institution: Ottawa Hospital Research Institute Ė NRI, Canada Project: Role of CDK5 in an MPTP Model of Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: Manisha Patel, Ph.D. Institution: National Jewish Medical and Research Center, CO Project: Mitochondrial Aconitase Inactivation in MPTP Neurotoxicity Award: $35,000

Investigator: Brenda A. Schulman, Ph.D. Institution: St. Jude Childrenís Research Hospital, TN Project: Structural and Functional Studies of the Parkin Ubiquitin Ligase Award: $35,000

Investigator: John J. Sidtis, Ph.D., L.P. Diana Van Lancker, Ph.D., CCC/SLP Institution: New York University, NY Project: Functional Imaging of Speech in Parkinsonís Disease Award: $35,000

Investigator: Ruth Walker, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: Bronx Veterans Research Foundation, NY Project: Effect of STN Lesions and Stimulation Upon Striatal Neurotransmitter Release in PD Models. Award: $35,000

Investigator: Katherine L. Widnell, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: Johns Hopkins, MD Project: Neuronal Dopamine Transporter Associated Proteins (DTRAP) Award: $35,000

Investigator: Ming Yang, M.D., Ph.D. Institution: Thomas Jefferson University, PA Project: Transplantation of Neural Stem Cells into a Rat Model of Parkinsonís Disease. Award: $35,000

Investigator: Xiaoxi Zhuang, Ph.D. Institution: The University of Chicago, IL Project: An Approach to Integrate Transgenes into Desirable Locus for Inducible Expression in Dopamine Neurons Award: $35,000

If you wish further information on the awards, a description of each project will be on our website shortly.

Source Date: Apr 12 2001