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TGen, Yale Win $2M for Melanoma Genomics Studies

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – As part of a $7 million round of funding for a range of molecular and cellular studies of melanoma, the Melanoma Research Alliance has granted $2 million for genomics studies through awards to the Translational Genomics Research Institute and to Yale University.

Under the funding round, the MRA has granted $1 million to TGen for a study that will use high-throughput genomics studies to identify novel melanoma risk genes, MRA said late last week.

The $1 million in funding to Yale University will support research to sequence the melanoma exome, transcriptome, and epigenome.

The TGen study seeking melanoma risk genes will include partnerships with Australia's Queensland Institute of Medical Research and the University of Sydney, as well as Sweden's Lund University.

"The world-wide team of investigators on this project has worked together for a decade to identify individuals and families who are at increased risk for this deadly disease," TGen President and Research Director Jeffrey Trent said in a statement from the institute. "While the team includes investigators from Europe and Australia, the research is particularly important to Arizonans who are disproportionately affected,'' he added.

"The identification of novel predisposition genes is a major first step towards accurately estimating individualized disease risk and ultimately implementing disease prevention and early-detection strategies for at-risk individuals," said Trent.

This round of funding is MRA's second, and it has now awarded a total of $16 million in grants for melanoma research.

"In this latest round of grants, we are pleased to support seven multidisciplinary approaches that hold great potential to advance melanoma treatments," Suzanne Topalian, Chair of the MRA Grant Review Committee and Director of the Johns Hopkins Melanoma Program, said in a statement.

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