Three Department of Medicine faculty members have been awarded research funding from the Veterans Administration (VA).
Michelle Kimple, PhD (pictured at upper right), assistant professor, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, received a VA Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development Merit Award providing $650,000 over four years for a project entitled "G Protein Mediated Mechanisms of Beta Cell Death Dysfunction and Decompensation in Diabetes." This research seeks to define the underlying mechanisms by which the G-protein GαZ contributes to beta cell dysfunction and loss in mouse models of diabetes.
Robert Striker, MD, PhD (pictured at middle right), associate professor, Infectious Disease, received a VA Biomedical Laboratory Research and Development Merit Award providing $625,000 over four years for a project entitled "Novel selective substituted aminofurazans kinase inhibitors for drug-resistant bacteria." This research aims to develop species-specific inhibitors of essential mycobacterial serine-threonine kinases that would be able to synergize with clinically used beta-lactam antibiotics.
Nasia Safdar, MD, PhD (pictured at lower right), associate professor, Infectious Disease, has received a VA Clinical Science Research and Development Pilot Award providing $300,000 over two years for a project entitled "Examining the gut microbiota in Veterans with Gulf War Illness." This pilot work will characterize gut microbiota structure and function in Veterans with Gulf War Illness, a chronic multi-symptom illness characterized by fatigue, pain, irritable bowel syndrome, and problems with cognitive function.
Additionally, Dr. Safdar has been awarded $100,000 over one year from the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (R03 award) for a proposal entitled "The GRAFT study: Gut RecolonizAtion by Fecal Transplantation." The pilot study will involve a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled trial comparing oral fecal microbiome transplantation with placebo in patients with a history of Clostridium difficile infection who are undergoing antibiotic treatment.