CIRM October Digest
During the last week of October, USC, Stanford, and UCLA celebrated grand openings of stem cell research facilities on their campuses. CIRM contributed $90 million to the three state-of-the-art facilities. That funding leveraged an added $235 million in donor and institutional contributions to build $325 million worth of research space with the capacity to house nearly 1,000 stem cell researchers. Three other CIRM-funded facilities opened earlier this year at UC Davis, UC Irvine and UC Berkeley. That leaves six of the 12 CIRM funded major facilities yet to come on line. All but one of those will open next year.
Early Translation Awards
On October 21st, the CIRM Governing Board approved $67 million to fund 19 projects in the second round of Early Translation grant awards. The funded projects are expected to either result in a candidate drug or cell therapy or make significant strides toward such a candidate, which can then be developed for submission to the FDA for clinical trial. Three of the awards include international collaborators in Germany.
ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) Video
CIRM released a new video about progress towards a stem cell-based clinical trial for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The video features Dan and Gloria Desmond who share their experiences living with ALS. Larry Goldstein, principal investigator of the CIRM ALS Disease Team, describes his team's strategy to bring their stem cell-based ALS therapy to clinical trials.
CIRM TV Hits YouTube Milestone
This month CIRM TV, the agency's YouTube video channel, surpassed 100,000 views since its launch in January 2009. CIRM blogged about the milestone by revisiting the channel's ten most popular videos.
Stem Cell Awareness Day
On October 6th, researchers, patients, advocates, and students around the globe celebrated Stem Cell Awareness Day, with special activities in five countries, six states in the U.S., seven academic and research institutions in California and 25 high school classrooms in the state.
New International Collaboration
On October 5th, CIRM announced an international stem cell research collaboration with the regional government of Andalusia, Spain. The agreement will make it easier for researchers in California and Andalusia to obtain joint funding and to interchange know-how in the area of regenerative medicine.