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INI awards Accelerator grant for new research on cancer

Two teams of researchers have won Accelerator Grants from the Iowa Neuroscience Institute (INI). These grants support high-impact neuroscience research in areas that are new or add value to existing research by branching in a new direction.

“These projects represent exciting and creative new approaches that will power the revolutionary discoveries in neuroscience that are the driving force of the Iowa Neuroscience Institute,” said Ted Abel, INI director.

Drs. Rahmouni and Chen were selected from among 18 applications, awarded $75,000 for up to two years.

Songhai Chen photo


“Regulation of Breast Cancer Progression by the Central Nervous System”
Kamal Rahmouni, Ph.D., Professor of Neuroscience and Pharmacology
Songhai Chen, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Neuroscience and Pharmacology


About 41 percent of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer during their lifetime and about 21 percent will die from cancer, yet current cancer treatment strategies have limited efficacy in curing cancer. Thus, there is a need to find new ways to treat cancer. Rahmouni and Chen seek to understand the contribution of the brain to the development and progression of cancer. Accumulating evidence indicates that tumors innervation plays a critical role in the initiation and progression of many types of cancer including breast cancer, the most frequent malignancy in women worldwide. However, we do not know whether the brain controls the activity of the tumor nerves. This work has the potential to uncover novel mechanisms that could lead to new cancer therapies.

Friday, November 22, 2019