A Medical Device Daily

The Life Sciences Discovery Fund (LSDF; Seattle) reported its latest grant recipients. Four Washington State-based research organizations will receive life sciences program grants totaling more than $18 million. The newly-funded health research initiatives will focus on advancing vaccine development, improving the potential of cardiac resuscitation technology, improving the delivery of mental health and substance abuse services in rural communities, and developing highly-targeted intracellular drug delivery mechanisms.

The Life Sciences Discovery Fund awardees are: Lawrence Corey, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (Seattle); Thomas Rea, Seattle & King County Department of Public Health (also Seattle); John Roll, Washington State University (Pullman, Washington); and Patrick Stayton, University of Washington (Seattle).

"The four new Life Sciences Discovery Fund grant recipients represent the breadth and depth of life sciences research-from accelerating vaccine development to targeting better drug delivery methods inside human cells, to studying point-of-care resuscitation technology, and to reaching out to rural, underserved populations to improve mental health and substance abuse services. We are proud to award the LSDF program grants to such valuable scientific and public health research endeavors," said Executive Director Lee Huntsman.

The grantees were selected by the Life Sciences Discovery Fund Board of Trustees from among 29 proposals that were evaluated by national experts convened by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In a rigorous competitive process the proposals were weighted on their scientific merits and their abilities to utilize this funding to provide statewide economic returns, to build a competitive life sciences industry, and to advance health care for Washingtonians.

Funding for the LSDF grant competitions comes from Washington's allocation of bonus payments under the Master Tobacco Settlement, revenues arising from multi-state litigation with tobacco product manufacturers. This group of awardees is the fourth to be funded by LSDF.

In other grant news, The Center for Connected Health (Boston) a division of Partners HealthCare (also Boston) is one of the nation's leading integrated healthcare delivery systems, reported the receipt of a $25,000 grant from the Verizon Foundation (Basking Ridge, New Jersey) to support the ongoing development of its Connected Health Diabetes Program, a web-based remote monitoring program for diabetes patients at practices affiliated with Partners HealthCare.

The center has developed a web portal where patients can upload and view their personal blood glucose readings, as well as track their medication and other lifestyle information that could affect their readings. In addition, healthcare providers can view individual patient data and send secure messages to their patients.

The Verizon Foundation grant will be used to gather feedback from participating patients and providers, to help improve this unique solution as an effective tool to help better manage diabetes and improve patient outcomes.