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Emory to Use Stimulus Bucks for 'Omics Research

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Emory University has reeled in a number of grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for genetics, genomic analysis, and biomarker research, including NIH Challenge Grants and Grand Opportunities Grants.

The NIH stimulus funding going to genomics at Emory will support bioinformatics projects, neurology, sociology, heart disease, and mammalian sequencing, according to the Atlanta-based University.

The Challenge Grants are aimed at pushing advances in high-impact areas such as genomics, and the GO grants are focused on funding large projects and creating resources that can be used by other researchers.

Among Emory's grants are a $869,000 GO grant that is part of a multi-center effort to create an international genomics database for autism and developmental disorders. This award from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development will fund work focused on abnormal regions of the genome, and it will complement the existing Database of Genomic Variants.

A $781,000 grant from the National Human Genome Research Institute will support a cloud computing and next-generation sequencing program.

The National Institute of General Medical Sciences awarded Emory a grant of $426,000 to study vole genomes. Voles are seen as potentially good models for studying social attachment and could provide information about mental illnesses such as autism, according to Emory.

Emory will use a $346,000 grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to study biomarkers in primates that could serve as diagnostic tools for post-traumatic stress disorder.

A grant of $500,000 from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke will fund research using data from genetic mutation studies to help find diagnostics that could be used to develop therapies for neuromuscular diseases such as muscular dystrophy.

A $498,000 grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute will seek to analyze the costs and benefits of using biomarker-based heart disease testing to help predict heart attack risk.

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