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NIAID to Fund Clinical Diagnostics for Fungal Pathogens

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Disease plans to fund collaborations between the mycology research community and the technology sector that will help develop clinical diagnostics for fungal diseases that are common to patients with compromised or suppressed immune systems.
NIAID will give between five and seven grant awardees a total of $1.5 million in fiscal 2010 to develop novel clinical diagnostic targets and subsequent assays for invasive aspergillosis and other invasive fungal diseases.
Because it has been shown that in immunocompromised patients some fungal pathogens may be left over from earlier infections and reactivated when the immune system suffers, NIAID sees a need for diagnostic assays that can distinguish between inhaled fungal species and flora that are normal in the human gut.
The institute identified four key areas it is encouraging researchers to explore: identification and validation of biomarkers or targets for invasive fungal disease using in silico analyses of pathogen genomes, proteomes, glycoproteomes, or metabologomes; development of an assay for novel targets using multiplex technologies; exploration and assessment of strategies for optimizing sample type and/or sample volume; applying technologies and methodologies to develop strategies for identifying targets and developing assays that are better than those currently available.
Further information about the request for funding can be found here.

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