Massachusetts Pulmonary Section Awards Funding for Stem Cell Research

(July 26, 2012)

The Medical & Scientific Branch has a mission to encourage and support lung disease research efforts and here at the Massachusetts Pulmonary Section we are delighted to be in a position to carry out that mission in our own state by directly funding local research.  
Research funding applications made to the American Lung Association are put through a rigorous nationwide peer review process and the top projects are then considered for possible local funding. The Massachusetts’s Pulmonary Section Research Committee members were impressed with all the applications received from Massachusetts but ultimately selected Finn Hawkins, MD, from Boston University Medical School as the recipient of MPS research funding from 2012 – 2014.
Dr Hawkins is a post doctoral fellow at the Pulmonary Center at Boston University School of Medicine and the selected research project is entitled “Reconstituting Lung Epithelium with Gene-Corrected Disease-Specific iPS Cells”.  The research seeks to advance our understanding of lung progenitor cell biology and develop the approaches needed for the generation of functional transplantable lung tissue from autologous human pluripotent stem cells.  Research such as this in the field of stem cell biology is beginning to advance and refine our understanding of lung injury and repair, and new discoveries offer the hope for future clinical translation to directly improve the lives of patients.
The ALA Research Awards Nationwide report covering all the projects funded in 2012 will be available through MSB News later in the year.  In the meantime, see the MSB Research and Grants webpage to find out more about what was funded in 2011, how you can support the program and how to apply for funding in 2013.