GNS, Cornell, UCSD Partner on Heart Model
The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has awarded a $2 million, four-year grant to Cornell University, Gene Network Sciences, and the University of California, San Diego, to develop a computer model of the canine ventricle.
Under the collaboration, Cornell will perform experiments to characterize ionic currents of single heart cells obtained from different parts of the ventricles. GNS will then use this data to construct computer models of different types of heart cells, which will be incorporated into a 3D computer model of a canine ventricle. UCSD will refine the model and use it to test candidate mechanisms for the development of ventricular fibrillation.
FASEB Calls for Higher NIH Funding in FY ‘05
The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology last week criticized the proposed 2.6 percent increase for the National Institutes of Health in President Bush’s 2005 budget request.
FASEB “is concerned that the President’s FY 2005 budget threatens our progress in medicine, and our position as world leader in the scientific research enterprise,” said Robert Wells, FASEB president, in a statement. “FASEB firmly believes that a 10 percent increase in NIH funding is crucial for transforming current scientific knowledge into treatments for and prevention of debilitating diseases, as well as to sustain the pace of discovery that ultimately leads to improved health and quality of life for all Americans.”
Under the proposed budget for fiscal 2005, the NIH’s budget will increase to $28.6 billion, from $27.9 billion in fiscal 2004. The increase is below the 3.5 percent jump in the $2.4 trillion fiscal 2005 federal budget.
Wells called the completion of the doubling of the NIH budget over the past five years “an historic event,” but added that “continued support is necessary to prevent erosion of that foundation and curtailment of scientific and medical progress.”
BioDiscovery in Deal with ArraGen …
BioDiscovery said last week that ArraGen of Craigavon, Northern Ireland, will use its GeneDirector enterprise software to manage its microarray data.
ArraGen, a new company developing microarray-based cancer diagnostics, said it will use the software to manage and analyze gene expression data from the Affymetrix GeneChip platform.
… And Validates ImaGene for Agilent Platform
BioDiscovery also said that its ImaGene image analysis software has been validated for use with Agilent Technologies’ newly released whole-human-genome microarray.
According to BioDiscovery, ImaGene is “the first, and currently the only non-Agilent software to be validated for use with the Agilent whole-genome array.”
NIH Ponies up $25M for Pharmacogenetics Database Project
Eight NIH Institutes issued a joint request for applications last week for participants in its Pharmacogenetics Research Network and Knowledge Base initiative.
NIH expects to award $25 million in fiscal year 2005 to fund approximately 10 to 12 new and/or continuation grants for the project, described as “a network of multidisciplinary, collaborative groups of investigators that contribute their data to the publicly available knowledge base PharmGKB [http://www.pharmgkb.org/].”
Both for-profit and non-profit research groups are eligible to apply for funding.
The full RFA is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-GM-04-002.html.