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NINR to Fund Studies Seeking Genomic Variants for Rehab Responses

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institute of Nursing Research plans to fund research projects that seek to uncover genomic variants or mechanisms that are involved in how patients respond to rehabilitation efforts, NINR said today.

NINR will provide up to $350,000 per-project, per-year for studies that aim to elucidate the roles that genomic variants or mechanisms may play in how patients respond to rehabilitation interventions that seek to improve or restore their functional abilities. The grants also will fund efforts to develop and test genomics-based rehabilitation interventions that maintain, improve, or restore patients' functional abilities.

The institute is strongly encouraging applicants to propose research projects that include nurse scientists in their teams, as well as using the resources available from Clinical and Translational Sciences award sites or other federally funded research centers.

NINR wants to improve functional abilities in patients who have had loss of function due to injuries and illness, such as brain and spinal injuries, or musculoskeletal disorders, or aging, and who have difficulties with basic activities such as bathing, dressing, eating, using the toilet, and broader activities such as shopping, taking prescribed drugs, or using the telephone.

"The more we know about the genomic underpinnings associated with response to rehabilitation interventions, the better equipped we are to develop personalized approaches to optimize recovery, improve outcomes, and enhance quality of life," NINR said.

This grant program was influenced by research from recent years which has shown associations between genetic variants like SNPs and improved functional outcomes following traumatic brain injury, as well as risk for poorer outcomes.

Research findings like that have suggested that genetic variation may be involved in the variation in clinical outcomes between different individuals who have the same underlying conditions.