Madhuri Hegde, associate professor and scientific director at Emory Genetics Laboratory, Emory University in Atlanta, was awarded an MDA research grant totaling $262,928 over two years to identify genes that, when mutated, cause congenital muscular dystrophy (CMD).
A significant number of CMD-associated genes have been identified, but in approximately 30 to 40 percent of occurrences of the disease the causative gene remains unknown.
MDA awarded a research grant totaling $375,000 over three years to Kevin Campbell, professor of neurology and internal medicine at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. The funds will help support Campbell's study of a process called protein O-mannosylation in a mouse model of congenital muscular dystrophy (CMD).
MDA has awarded a research grant totaling $251,596 over two years to Shireen Lamande, senior research fellow and group leader for muscular dystrophy research and musculoskeletal disorders at Murdoch Childrens Research Institute in Parkville, Victoria, Australia. The new funds will help support Lamande’s research into the identification of new genes responsible for two types of congenital muscular dystrophy (CMD), Bethlem myopathy and Ullrich congenital muscular dystrophy.
MDA has awarded a research grant totaling $442,023 over three years to Madeleine Durbeej-Hjalt, a professor in muscle biology at Lund University (Sweden), Department of Experimental Medical Science. The grant will help support Durbeej-Hjalt's study of muscle-protein degradation processes in type 1A congenital muscular dystrophy (CMD1A).
Susan Brown, a reader (equivalent to associate professor) in translational medicine at the Royal Veterinary College in London, has been awarded an MDA grant totaling $356,838 over three years. The grant will help support Brown's research on muscular dystrophies related to mutations in the gene for fukutin-related protein (FKRP).
Sonja Nowotschin, a postdoctoral research fellow in the developmental biology department at the Sloan-Kettering Institute in New York, has been awarded an MDA development grant totaling $163,638 over three years. (Development grants are MDA's mechanism for furthering the career development of promising young researchers.)
Darren has been painting and drawing since the age of 6. He attended the Carver Center for Arts and Technology in Towson, MD, where he received several awards at exhibits, and he is currently attending the Zoll Studio of Fine Art in Timonium, MD. He also enjoys spending time with his family and playing video games and going to movies. Darren has many memories of attending MDA summer camp and particularly enjoyed the pool, watergun fights, fishing and meeting fellow campers and counselors.
Respondents to MDA’s Transitions Survey — in other words, people with a neuromuscular disease who are in their teens through late 30s — made it clear they had questions about the genetics of their disease, as well as questions about family planning and the value of diagnostic testing.
The Muscular Dystrophy Association has awarded 38 new grants totaling more than $12 million to fund research projects focused on its continuing mission to uncover the causes of, and develop therapies for, the more than 40 neuromuscular diseases in its program.
MDA's Board of Directors reviewed and approved the new grants based on recommendations from the Association's Scientific and Medical Advisory Committees, and the grants took effect Feb. 1.