OHSU Receives $1.8 Million Grant From the Howard Hughes Medical Institute

12/15/99    Portland, Ore.

Grant will be used to expand biomedical research.

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute has awarded Oregon Health Science University's School of Medicine a four-year, $1.8 million grant to promote biomedical research. OHSU is one of 41 medical schools nationwide to receive grants from HHMI totaling $92 million.

OHSU will use the award to enhance fundamental research on campus into the molecular basis of disease. To achieve this goal, resources from the HHMI grant will be used to recruit outstanding new faculty into the research programs in the OHSU basic science departments and in the new Division of Molecular Medicine, a unit of the Department of Medicine.

"Our goal is to attract the brightest and best of the next generation of biomedical scientists to OHSU," said Peter Rotwein, M.D., principal investigator and professor in OHSU's School of Medicine and head of the Division of Molecular Medicine. "This grant represents a great opportunity to expand research activities on our campus. An investment such as this one into fundamental biomedical research will catalyze scientific discovery and has the potential to lead to new treatments for a broad spectrum of diseases."

This is the second in a series of HHMI grants to medical schools meant to help them strengthen their ability to do research at a time when managed care and other changes in traditional funding present challenges to that important role. In 1995, OHSU was among 30 medical schools who shared a total of $80 million in the first round of grants. These funds were used to develop shared scientific facilities on the OHSU campus for research in genetics, microbiology and biochemistry.

HHMI invited 126 medical schools to compete for the current round of grants. Successful proposals emphasized development of fundamental research programs, collaborations between researchers in basic sciences and in clinical departments, or development of new research infrastructures. The HHMI is a medical research organization that conducts biomedical research, and also provides grants to support scientific research and education.