Public Release: 

Harrington Discovery Institute announces 2016 partnership scholars

University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center

Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio - part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development - has announced its 2016 partnership Scholars selected in collaboration with Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF), and Foundation Fighting Blindness and University of Oxford.

Harrington Discovery Institute collaborations are based on a shared mission to advance discoveries into new medicines that will improve human health, as well as, enhance each organization's ability to play a significant role in setting the scientific and innovation agenda in leading-edge research. These awards offer selected winners funding and expert pharmaceutical guidance to move their discoveries forward and ensure the most promising enter the clinic. Please join us in congratulating our newest scholars.

The 2016 ADDF-Harrington Scholars are:

  • Travis Dunckley, PhD, Arizona State University, whose work focuses on using DYRK1A inhibitors to prevent cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's pathology

  • Sung Ok Yoon, PhD, The Ohio State University, whose work focuses on using novel inhibitors of a stress-activated kinase for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease

The 2016 Gund-Harrington Scholar is:

  • David M. Gamm, MD, PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison, whose work focuses on restoring sight through the use of human pluripotent stem cells in individuals suffering from retinal degenerative disease

The 2016 Oxford-Harrington Scholar is:

  • Valentine M. Macaulay, MD, PhD, whose work focuses on disrupting receptor internalization and nuclear translocation as a novel therapy for cancer

"The Cleveland-based Harrington Discovery Institute currently supports promising discoveries in North America and the U.K.," said Jonathan S. Stamler, MD, President, Harrington Discovery Institute. "Our collaborations with disease foundations and like-minded research institutions allow us to better address underserved areas of medicine and to bring forth new medicines where treatments remain elusive."

"We at the Foundation Fighting Blindness continue to applaud Ron Harrington's support for accelerating promising research from the bench to clinical studies," said Gordon Gund, chairman and co-founder of the Foundation Fighting Blindness. "The Harrington Discovery Institute offers highly pragmatic support to our researchers, based in hundreds of years of collective experience from an impressive cadre of pharmaceutical R&D executives. Together we are dedicated to helping millions defeat diseases that limit the ability to experience the gift of sight."

In addition to funding, award recipients receive committed drug development and project management support through the Harrington Discovery Institute's Innovation Support Center for the duration of the term of the award. This includes consulting and management services from experienced pharmaceutical development professionals, as well as regulatory, intellectual property and business development assistance.

"I am delighted that Professor Macaulay has been selected as the next Oxford-Harrington Scholar," said Professor Sir John Bell, Regius Professor of Medicine, University of Oxford. "This program will support her novel approach around hormone receptors, which shows promise in treating cancers that touch millions of lives around the world."

Harrington Scholars have facilitated access to BioMotiv - part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development - a for-profit commercialization company that is aligned with the Harrington Discovery Institute in mission and structure. BioMotiv was created to further advance discoveries by academic researchers in areas of unmet need.

"Our collaboration with the Harrington Discovery Institute is proving fruitful in aggregating effort around Alzheimer's disease R&D," said Howard Fillit, MD, Founding Executive Director and Chief Science Officer at the ADDF. "Our joint goals are to broaden the portfolio of drug targets in the pipeline and accelerate their development. We recognize the value of The Harrington Project model, and see this important collaboration as a way to advance ADDF's work, which offers hope to people globally who currently are touched by Alzheimer's disease and to those who fear it in their future."

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Contact information:

For Harrington Discovery Institute
Paula Darte
Director of Media and Public Relations
University Hospitals, Cleveland, Ohio
216-870-6323
Paula.Darte@UHhospitals.org

For Foundation Fighting Blindness
Rhea K. Farberman
Senior Director of Communications and Marketing
410-423-0635
RFarberman@fightblindness.org

For University of Oxford
Liam Murphy
liam.murphy@admin.ox.ac.uk

For Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation
Krishna Knabe
Director of Communications
212-907-7997
kknabe@alzdiscovery.org

Foundation Fighting Blindness has a broad network and deep domain expertise in inherited retinal diseases, a set of programs for funding discoveries and advancing them toward clinical studies, and a robust pipeline of funded projects that represent new therapeutic opportunities. The foundation is funding startup companies and for-profit initiatives through its establishment of the Clinical Research Institute (the CRI), a not-for-profit subsidiary, which can partner to provide substantial later-stage funding for high-potential projects. The Foundation Fighting Blindness is supporting several clinical trials, and many additional gene and stem cell-based human studies could begin in the next several years. For more information, please visit fightblindness.org.

Oxford University's Medical Sciences Division is one of the largest biomedical research centers in Europe, with more than 2,500 people involved in research and more than 2,800 students. The university is rated the best in the world for medicine, and it is home to the U.K.'s top-ranked medical school. From the genetic and molecular basis of disease to the latest advances in neuroscience, Oxford is at the forefront of medical research. It has one of the largest clinical trial portfolios in the U.K. and great expertise in taking discoveries from the lab into the clinic. Partnerships with the local NHS Trusts enable patients to benefit from close links between medical research and health care delivery. A great strength of Oxford medicine is its long-standing network of clinical research units in Asia and Africa, enabling world-leading research on the most pressing global health challenges such as malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS and flu. Oxford is also renowned for its large-scale studies that examine the role of factors such as smoking, alcohol and diet on cancer, heart disease and other conditions. For more information, please visit medsci.ox.ac.uk.

Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation

Founded in 1998 by co-chairmen Leonard A. and Ronald S. Lauder, the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) is dedicated to rapidly accelerating the discovery of drugs to prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer's disease. The ADDF follows a venture philanthropy model, funding research in academia and the biotechnology industry. And it's the only such charity solely dedicated to funding the discovery and development of drugs for Alzheimer's. Through the support of its donors, the ADDF has awarded more than $70 million to fund over 450 Alzheimer's drug discovery programs and clinical trials in 18 countries. To learn more, visit alzdiscovery.org.

Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio - part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development - aims to advance medicine and society by enabling our nation's most inventive scientists to turn their discoveries into medicines that improve human health.

The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development (The Harrington Project), announced in late February 2012, is a first-of-its-kind $300 million international initiative, powered by a $50 million gift from the Harrington family. It includes the Harrington Discovery Institute and BioMotiv, a for-profit, mission-aligned development company that oversees a portfolio of early-stage programs that are built to be licensed to pharmaceutical companies.

For more information about The Harrington Project, Harrington Discovery Institute and upcoming funding opportunities, visit HarringtonDiscovery.org.

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