NIH Awards Grants for Research Consortium
NIH on Tuesday awarded 12 universities about $100 million in grants to establish a consortium that will seek to translate medical research into new treatments and to improve the quality of such research, the AP/Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports. According to NIH Director Elias Zerhouni, the consortium will allow university hospitals to pool their patients to track the side effects of medications and recruit more participants for medical studies (Neergaard, AP/Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 10/3).
NIH awarded the grants, funded through Clinical and Transitional Awards, to Columbia University Health Sciences, Duke University, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Oregon Health and Science University, Rockefeller University, University of California-Davis, UC-San Francisco, University of Pennsylvania, University of Pittsburgh, University of Rochester, University of Texas Health Science Center and Yale University.
By 2012, NIH plans to expand the consortium to include a total of 60 universities and to provide them with $500 million in grants (Teitelbaum, CQ HealthBeat, 10/3).
Zerhouni said, "We need to accelerate the way we ... bring all these discoveries from the bench to the bedside and make sure they reach the people" (AP/Seattle Post Intelligencer, 10/3). According to Zerhouni, the consortium marks "the first systematic change in our approach to clinical research in 50 years" (Lerner, Minneapolis Star Tribune, 10/3).
Zerhouni added that the consortium "is designed to bring us into the 21st century" and "will hopefully allow us to deliver results more quickly" (Berger, Houston Chronicle, 10/4).