June 2012 Newsletter
CIRM June Newsletter
- CIRM Announces International Collaborations and $69 Million in New Research Funding
- CIRM's Five Year Strategic Plan Released
- CIRM President's May 2012 Update on Advances in Stem Cell Science
- Focus on the Eye Webinar Available on CIRM Website
- Michael Marletta Appointed to CIRM Governing Board
- Stories of Progress from the CIRM Stem Cell Research Blog
- Upcoming Events
On May 24th, CIRM announced its first ever collaboratively funded research projects with China and the federal government of Australia, a new project with Germany, plus $69 million for research to help develop therapies for 15 diseases in its latest round of funding. These awards mark the third round of funding for the Early Translational Awards program, which supports projects that are in the initial stages of identifying drugs or cell types that could become disease therapies. The disease focus of the new awards includes brain tumors, muscle atrophy, Alzheimer’s disease, stroke, spinal cord injury, heart disease, multiple sclerosis and incontinence, among others.
The CIRM 2012 Strategic Plan was approved by the governing board at its May 24th meeting. The plan builds on the solid foundations of the 2007 plan and sets out scientific, clinical, economic, and community objectives for CIRM over the next five years and beyond with a focus on driving stem cell science to clinical trials that have the potential to generate evidence of therapeutic benefit for patients.
Each month CIRM President Alan Trounson reports on advances in stem cell science by highlighting recently published papers from CIRM grantees and other leading research teams around the world. This month's report includes results from two teams using different stem cell types to grow bone, findings that may provide treatments for large bone defects. Two additional reports focus on reversing the impact of aging on stem cells
On May 2nd, CIRM hosted a free webinar about the issues and challenges of developing therapies for retinal disorders. Speakers included the FDA, executives from Advanced Cell Technology, who currently have three open human embryonic stem cell-based clinical trials, and the principal investigator of a CIRM Disease Team who is focusing on age-related macular degeneration.
In May, Michael A. Marletta, PhD, President and CEO of The Scripps Research Institute, was appointed to the CIRM governing board. Dr. Marletta, a renowned biochemist, was named to the board by California State Treasurer Bill Lockyer. He takes one of the seats designated for a representative of a California University under Proposition 71, the voter–approved initiative that created the stem cell agency.
With over 1000 CIRM-funded publications and counting, CIRM grantees are making continual progress in the basic understanding of stem cell science and moving stem cell-based therapies toward clinical trials. These incremental steps are summarized in CIRM's Stem Cell Research Updates blog. Here are a few links to stories about CIRM-funded research results from our May blog entries:
- Gene found to activate muscle stem cells in mice with muscular dystrophy
- San Francisco man cured of HIV, CIRM teams replicating the success
- Questions arise about disease-in-a-dish model for some diseases
ICOC Governing Board Meeting
July 26: The CIRM governing board will hold its fourth meeting of 2012 at the San Francisco Airport Marriott in Burlingame, CA. You can get location and agenda details by watching our meetings page. The agenda will be posted 10 days before the meeting. You can also sign up to receive announcements about CIRM meetings on our website.
Upcoming Requests for Applications (RFAs) Deadlines
- RFA 12-05: CIRM Strategic Partnership I Awards - Application due 5:00 pm (PDT), June 26, 2012 note: the Letter of Intent was due May 16, 2012
- RFA 12-01: CIRM New Faculty Physician Scientist Translational Research Awards - Application due 5:00 pm (PDT), July 10, 2012 note: the Letter of Intent and Candidate Nomination Forms were due May 23, 2012