A Message from the Chair
A modern medical miracle
I consider stem cells to be a modern medical miracle – the most exciting advance in medicine since antibiotics. Yet just a few years ago, Michigan’s scientists couldn’t make new stem cell lines. Well, they could – but they would be committing a crime that could land them in jail for 10 years and cost them $10 million.
Thankfully, Michigan voters spoke out loudly in favor of curing diseases when in 2008 they approved a constitutional amendment lifting restrictions on stem cell research.
Since then, the progress we have made throughout the state in stem cell research has been nothing short of remarkable. Our great research institutions are hiring new scientists and doing cutting-edge work. The biotech industry is heating up, creating jobs and new opportunities. We’re on the verge of new, life-saving advances in medicine as a result of this burgeoning frontier of research.
At the University of Michigan, the scientists of the Taubman Institute are making incredible progress. Dr. Eva Feldman, our director, is conducting the first human clinical trial of a stem cell treatment for ALS, that terrible condition known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Dr. Max Wicha, a Taubman Scholar and director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center, is leading the first-ever clinical trial targeting cancer stem cells. The Taubman Institute also has established the Consortium for Stem Cell Therapies, one of the few facilities in the nation to produce new embryonic stem cell lines that contain the genetic defects for specific diseases.
I founded the Taubman Institute to support innovative medical science like stem cell research. We are supporting the work of 12 Taubman Scholars, senior physician-scientists working in crucial fields of research such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and neurological disorders. We have also launched an Emerging Scholars Program to foster the careers of promising young physician-scientists.
Yes, it is an exciting time to be in Michigan if you are a medical scientist. We are making crucial laboratory discoveries. More importantly, we’re moving that progress from bench to bedside, where it can help patients suffering from disease. That is the true goal of the Taubman Institute.
A. Alfred Taubman
Founder and Chair, A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute
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.
Drug cuts risk of bone-marrow transplant side effect
Taubman Emerging Scholar Sung Won Choi, M.D., is the lead author of a new study that finds a new way to help prevent graft-vs-host disease in cancer patients receiving bone-marrow transplants.
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.
Click here to read more.
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
Click here for the lineup
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.