State leaders laud Taubman Institute accomplishments
Leaders of state and local government visited the Taubman Institute on March 18 to tour Taubman Scholar labs and discuss the potential medical research offers for both improving the health of residents and establishing new jobs and businesses in Michigan.
Meeting with Taubman Institute Founder and Chair A. Alfred Taubman and Director Dr. Eva Feldman were state Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville, Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson and George Miller, director of the Oakland County Department of Health and Human Services. They were joined by Cynthia Wilbanks, U-M’s vice president for government relations, and Linden Nelson, a Michigan entrepreneur.
The promise of stem cells for the treatment of disease was among the topics discussed. Dr. Feldman gave an update on her landmark trial of a new stem cell therapy for ALS, and Dr. Gary Smith, director of the MStem Cell Laboratories (U-M’s newly renamed stem cell derivation lab), told the visitors about the 16 new stem cell lines that MStem has developed – including one that carries the gene for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a heart defect that often strikes down young athletes.
The cells from that line can be grown into heart cells that actually beat on their own in the petri dish, Dr. Smith said, and thus allow physicians to study the progression of the disease in ways that aren’t possible on human subjects.
“I have always been a staunch believer in the promise of stem cells to alleviate disease, and the scientists we support through the Taubman Institute continue to amaze me, their own colleagues and the entire scientific community with the remarkable results of their visionary research,” said Mr. Taubman.
Following an update by Max Wicha’s, a Taubman Scholar and director of U-M’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, on his pioneering clinical trials targeting cancer stem cells, the group traveled to U-M’s North Campus Research Complex for a tour of the 2.1 million square-foot facility, including Dr. Wicha’s new state-of-the-art cancer research lab.
“It’s amazing to see the world class research happening right in our own backyard,” said Sen. Richardville. “The University of Michigan's Taubman Institute is leading the world in medical research for diseases like cancer and ALS. They are truly ‘the Leaders and the Best.’"
New Taubman Prize trophy debuts
The new trophy for the Taubman Prize for Excellence in Translational Medical Research, which was designed in consultation with institute founder Mr. A. Alfred Taubman, was presented at the institute's Oct. 11 symposium. The modern sculpture was created using a novel 3D printing technique.
Call for applications
Taubman Institute to offer six new scholar grants
The institute is accepting applications through Dec. 1 for its flagshop Taubman Scholar grant program, which is open to clinician-scientists on the U-M Medical School Faculty. Grants are $150,000 per year for three years.
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U-M offers new early detection prostate cancer test
Research by Taubman Scholar Dr. Arul Chinnaiyan has let to the development of a new test for prostate cancer that is far more accurate than the standard PSA test, the University of Michigan has announced.
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news & events
Is there a link between tonsils and psoriasis?
Trial tested the effect of tonsillectomy on the skin disease
Taubman Emerging Scholar Dr. Johann Gudjonsson and colleagues found that people who had their tonsils removed showed improvment.
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Fall Visiting Professor Lectures schedule
Distinguished guest speakers include experts in lung, muscle and nerve diseases
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Breast cancer clinical trial enrolling patients
Research by Taubman Scholar Dr. Max Wicha into breast cancer stem cells is the basis for a new human clinical trial of the drug Reparixin, which scientists hope will curb the growth of the tumor-fueling cells.