Medical research highlights, August 2023

Karen Gould, PhD

Karen Gould, PhD

The UNMC College of Medicine received grant and funding awards representing more than $7.7 million in new funding in June.

Karen Gould, PhD, genetics, cell biology and anatomy, received a grant of $750,000 from U.S. Army/USAMRAA/CDMRP for a study of estrogen receptor alpha regulation of B cell receptor signaling, B cell activation, and peripheral B cell tolerance in lupus.

Sunil Hingorani, MD, PhD, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received a grant of $540,742 from the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network for “Murine Clinical Trials for the Evaluation of High Priority Therapeutic Targets for Precision Promise.” Dr. Hingorani also received a grant of $327,186 from DHHS/NIH/NCI for investigating the metastatic drive in pancreas cancer, and a grant of $322,913 from DHHS/NIH/NCI for a study on overcoming stromal barriers to therapeutics in pancreas cancer.

Paul Thomas, internal medicine-GI, received a grant of $500,255 from the DHHS/NIH/NIAAA for a study on the role of intestinal autophagy in the pathogenesis of alcohol associated liver disease.

Yulong Li, MD, emergency medicine, received a grant of $300,000 from the American Heart Association for a study of optogenetic activation of cardiac vagal neurons as a potential therapy for fatal ventricular arrhythmia in heart failure.

Christopher Conrady, MD, PhD, ophthalmology and visual sciences, received a grant of $234,732 from DHHS/NIH/NEI for a study of innate immunity to viral infection of the retina.

Tammy Kielian, PhD, pathology/microbiology, received a grant of $230,250 from DHHS/NIH/NIAID for a study on modulating granulocytic myeloid-derived suppressor cell (G-MDSC) metabolic activity to promote Staphylococcus aureus biofilm clearance.

Micah Schott, PhD, biochemistry/molecular biology, received a grant of $215,284 from DHHS/NIH/NCI for a study on mechanisms of lipid droplet trafficking in hepatocellular carcinoma.

Daniel Monaghan, PhD, pharmacology/experimental neuroscience, received a grant of $155,800 from the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation for the Neuroimmunology of Disease Training Program.

Heather Thomas, MD, pediatrics-pulmonology, received a grant of $213,872 from DHHS/NIH/NINDS for the Cystic Fibrosis Care, Teaching and Research Center.

Cyrus Desouza, MBBS, internal medicine-DEM, received a grant of $93,703 from VA Medical Center-Omaha for the VA IMPACT project.

Benjamin Tepley, MD, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received a grant of $91,456 from Johns Hopkins University for a study comparing sequential high-dose testosterone and Enzalutamide to Enzalutamide alone in asymptomatic men with castration resistant metastatic prostate cancer, study arms A and B. Dr. Tepley also received a grant of $51,732 from Johns Hopkins for study arm C.

Amar Singh, PhD, biochemistry and molecular biology, received a grant of $67,927 from the VA Medical Center-Omaha for as an IPA for Santosh Yadav.

Kurt Fisher, MD, PhD, pathology and microbiology, received a grant of $65,000 from the Nebraska DHHS for a study targeting Rab14 for anti-cancer therapy.

Justin Mott, MD, PhD, biochemistry and molecular biology, received a grant of $65,000 from the Nebraska DHHS for a study on bile flow suppression of FGFR4 cancer signaling.

Ricia Hyde, PhD, biochemistry and molecular biology, received a grant of $65,000 from the Nebraska DHHS for the evaluation of novel polymeric compounds with anti-leukemic activities.

Pi-Wan Cheng, PhD, biochemistry and molecular biology, received a grant of $65,000 from the Nebraska DHHS for a study of how interleukin-6 induces sialyl-Tn mucin O-glycans to promote cancer progression.

Sarah Holstein, MD, PhD, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received a grant of $65,000 from the Nebraska DHHS for a study of novel approaches to targeting metabolic pathways in osteosarcoma.

Rebekah Gundry, PhD, cellular/integrative physiology, received a grant of $50,865 from Kings College London for a study exploring the translational potential of the NPY Y4 receptor for treating type 1 diabetes.

Russell Mcculloh, MD, pediatrics-hospitalists, received a grant of $47,969 from Duke University for “Pharmacokinetics, Pharmacodynamics, and Safety Profile of Understudied Drugs Administered to Children per Standard of Care (POPS).” Dr. Mcculloh also received $3,444 for the Society for Clinical Trials Meeting Travel Award from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.

Marco Gonzalez-Castellon, MD, neurological sciences, received a grant of $45,305 from the University of Cincinnati for a comparison of anti-coagulation and anti-platelet therapies for intracranial vascular atherostenosis.

Rana Zabad, MD, neurological sciences, received a grant of $7,613 from Johns Hopkins University for the “Traditional Versus Early Aggressive Therapy For Multiple Sclerosis (TREAT-MS) Trial.”

Aaron Barksdale, MD, emergency medicine, received a grant of $3,851 from the University of Minnesota for the upper Midwest hub.

Ruben Quiros, MD, pediatrics-hospitalists, received a grant of $1,000 from Johns Hopkins  University for a study exploring the genotype-phenotype relationship of variants of unknown significance from a genetic cholestasis panel.

Industry-sponsored grants and contracts:

The following industry-sponsored grants and contracts were received.

Corrigan McBride, MD, surgery-general surgery, received funding for the AUDACITY Study (AllUrion Device in Adults with Clinical ObesITY).

Jairam Krishnamurthy, MD, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received funding for a study comparing Gedatolisib in combination with Palbociclib and Fulvestrant to standard-of-care therapies in patients with HR-positive, HER2-negative advanced breast cancer previously treated.

Sarah Holstein, MD, PhD, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received funding for a study to evaluate the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics and efficacy of Modakafusp Alfa in combination with Daratumumab subcutaneous in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma.

Ronald Zolty, MD, PhD, internal medicine-cardiovascular, received funding for a study of AZD3427 in participants with heart failure and pulmonary hypertension due to left heart disease.

Vijaya Bhatt, MBBS, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received funding for a study of off-the-shelf natural killer (NK) cells (SAR445419) in participants with relapsed or refractory acute myeloid leukemia (R/R) AML (TED17749).

Matthew Lunning, DO, internal medicine-oncology/hematology, received funding for a study to Determine the Maximum Tolerated Dose, Assess the Safety and Tolerability, Pharmacokinetics and Preliminary Efficacy of Iberdomide (CC220 Iberdomide).

Scott Westphal, MD, internal medicine-nephrology, received funding for a study evaluating the safety and efficacy of Siplizumab in combination with Belatacept and MPA compared to standard of care immunosuppression in de novo renal transplant recipients.

Pierre Fayad, MD, neurological sciences, received funding for a study to demonstrate the efficacy and safety of Milvexian, an oral factor XIa inhibitor, for stroke prevention after an acute ischemic stroke.

Hani Haider, PhD, orthopedic surgery, received funding for impingement testing of dual mobility total hip replacement components from Ortho Development. Dr. Haider also received funding for wear testing of the Enovis reverse shoulder replacement system.

Chittalsinh Raulji, MBBS, pediatrics-oncology/hematolgy, received funding for A study on “ONC201 for the Treatment of Newly Diagnosed H3 K27M-mutant Diffuse Glioma Following Completion of Radiotherapy.”

Shane Manatsathit, MD, internal medicine-GI, received funding for a study to evaluate the safety and efficacy of Elafibranor in adult participants with primary sclerosing cholangitis.

Derrick Eichele, MD, internal medicine-GI, received funding for a study to evaluate the efficacy and safety of ABX464 once daily for the induction treatment in subjects with moderately to severely active ulcerative colitis.

Daniel Surdell, MD, neurosurgery, received funding for “RESTORE – REal-World Analyses of Stroke Thrombus Occlusion Retrieval.”

Luciano Vargas, MD, surgery-transplant, received funding for the Collaborative Islet Transplant Registry.

Scott Koepsell, MD, PhD, pathology/microbiology, received funding for “Validation of the Diagnostic Clinical Performance of HemosIL CL HIT-IgG(PF4-H) on the ACL TOP 970 CL: Fresh v. Frozen Protocol Comparison.”