LuMind Foundation Awards $1.1 Million in Grants to Advance Down Syndrome Cognition Research

LuMind Foundation, the nation’s leading Down syndrome cognition research organization, has contributed $10.5 million to fund cognition research since the organization was founded in 2004.

September 10, 2014 (Marlborough, Mass.) – The LuMind Foundation (formerly the Down Syndrome and Treatment Foundation – DSRTF) announces the award of $1.1 million in funding for six new LuMind Research Grants, propelling Down syndrome cognition research. The latest recipients of LuMind Foundation grant funding are researchers at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, University of California San Diego School of Medicine, University of Arizona, Stanford University and VA Palo Alto Health Care System.Grants 2015 Quote

The LuMind Research Grants for 2014-2015 significantly build upon the LuMind-supported research that has led to dramatic breakthroughs in defining specific mechanisms responsible for cognitive impairment in Down syndrome, as well as the identification and pursuit of nine new potential drug targets for improving cognitive function, learning, memory and speech, involving the developmental intellectual disability, and overcoming the additional cognitive decline and neurodegeneration associated with the earlier onset Alzheimer’s disease and aging in individuals with Down syndrome.

“The new grants supporting these exceptional investigators and their research will significantly accelerate further progress in discovery, translational, and clinical research for new therapies to improve cognitive function for children and adults with Down syndrome,” said Dr. Michael Harpold, LuMind Foundation’s Chief Scientific Officer and Chair, Scientific Advisory Board. “LuMind recognizes that without the generous financial support of the Foundation’s donors, these new advances, grants, and initiatives would not be possible, and we continue to be extremely grateful to all for their support.”

LuMind Foundation, a national nonprofit organization founded in 2004, focuses exclusively on identifying and funding critical biomedical cognition research for children and adults with Down syndrome. The Foundation’s mission is to accelerate the development of treatments that will allow people with Down syndrome to:

  • participate more successfully in school and work
  • lead more active and independent lives, and
  • prevent additional earlier cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

“With the  earlier development of Alzheimer’s disease in the majority of individuals with Down syndrome, recent and ongoing research progress underscores the hope of providing preventive treatments in those with Down syndrome, and that could benefit everyone,” added Dr. Harpold. “LuMind Foundation’s Research Program and Grants, including proactive and strategic engagement with biopharmaceutical companies, have been critical in addressing key strategic priorities and accelerating the unprecedented advances and progress leading to the initiation of landmark clinical trials.”

The new 2014-2015 LuMind Research Grants include:

Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine – receiving $175,000 LuMind Research Center Grant for “A Down Syndrome Center for Fundamental Research-Cognition.”

Emory University School of Medicine – receiving $210,000 LuMind Research Center Grant for “The Down Syndrome Cognition Project (DSCP)” with co-Principal investigators from nine additional institutions (Johns Hopkins University, Kennedy Krieger Institute, University of Arizona, University of California Davis/MIND Institute, University of Pittsburgh, Oregon Health and Science University, Children’s National Medical Center Washington DC, UPenn/ Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Waisman Center/University of Wisconsin).

University of California, San Diego School of Medicine – receiving $235,000 LuMind Research Center Grant for “Defining the genes, mechanisms and treatments for neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative causes of cognitive dysfunction in Down syndrome.”

University of Arizona – receiving a $195,000 LuMind Research Innovation Grant for “The Neuropsychology of Down Syndrome.”

Stanford University – receiving a $165,000 LuMind Research Innovation Grant for “Mechanisms Underlying the Roles of Sleep and Circadian Rhythms in the Learning Disability of Down Syndrome.”

VA Palo Alto Health Care System – receiving a $120,000 Innovation Research Pilot Research Grant for “Improving Adrenergic Signaling for the Treatment of Cognitive Dysfunction in Down Syndrome.”

For individual Research Grant Project Summaries with more detailed information, please visit our web site.

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