Durham, NC, December 24, 2010 – Vascular BioSciences announced today it has received, in collaboration with the University of South Alabama, a two year Exploration/Development grant from the National Heart Lung Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the amount of $412,850. The 1R21HL106101 award was given to the project, “Cell‒targeted drug delivery for the treatment of pulmonary arterial hypertension,” and will be performed in collaboration with principal investigator Masahiko Oka, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine at the University of South Alabama, and David Mann, CEO of Vascular BioSciences.
With the R21 Grant, the group looks to identify homing peptides that can be used to deliver pharmacological agents selectively to hypertensive pulmonary arteries. The discovery and isolation of such peptides can lead to the development of a targeted drug delivery system to improve the future treatment of PAH.
“I am honored to receive this R21 Grant,” said principal investigator Dr. Oka. “Despite modern advances in the treatment of PAH, it still remains a life‒threatening condition. The NIH award has made it evident that novel research ideas are urgently needed in order to progress towards better treatment of PAH.”
David Mann, CEO of Vascular BioSciences and co-principal investigator of the project commented, “We are very fortunate to receive this grant award to further develop our research on homing peptides. The recognition from the NIH supports our confidence in the potential impact of our ideas on the future treatment of PAH. This award also highlights the creativity and dedication of our entire collaborative group including our co‒investigators Ivan McMurtry, Ph.D., and Michie Toba M.D., of the University of South Alabama Medical Center and Erkki Ruoslahti M.D., Ph.D., and Masanobu Komatsu, Ph.D. of the Sanford‒Burnham Medical Research Institute.”
About Vascular BioSciences
Vascular BioSciences, a diversified biomedical company with operations in California and North Carolina, provides disease solutions in order to enhance and prolong human life.
Vascular BioSciences makes interventional catheters to obtain endoarterial biopsies, provides molecular diagnostic services, and through it’s majority owned subsidiary VBS Pharmaceuticals, develops targeted therapeutics for patients with difficult to treat diseases.
About University of South Alabama
The University of South Alabama, a diverse and vibrant public university, is making a difference in the lives of the people of Alabama and the nation through teaching, research, service and health care. The University offers a wide range of high-quality undergraduate and graduate academic programs, and the USA Health System, which includes the College of Medicine, USA Physicians, USA Mitchell Cancer Institute and USA Hospitals, provides state‒of‒the‒art health care and medical education. The Center for Lung Biology is a world recognized research center with active research programs in lung injury and pulmonary hypertension. The CLB collaborates with clinical programs at USA including a vibrant Pulmonary Hypertension Center.