Even though schizophrenia only affects about 1 percent of the world's population, it is a well-known neurological disorder occasionally mentioned in TV, movies and books. People with schizophrenia think they hear voices in their head, think people are reading their mind, and may think people are controlling their thoughts, amongst other things. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, 10 percent of people who have a first-degree relative with schizophrenia will also have the disorder. The causes of schizophrenia are still unknown and there are few treatment options available to those who have this severe, chronic disorder. The National Institute of Health recently recognized the work of two institutions studying schizophrenia, and awarded them each grants to continue their research of this disorder. One of these institutions is the world-class University of Maryland, Baltimore.
A normal vs. schizophrenic brain scan. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia)
The National Institute of Health (NIH) recently awarded the University of Maryland, Baltimore a $10.7 million, 5-year grant to establish a new research center in the School of Medicine's Department of Psychiatry that will study schizophrenia. The Silvio O. Conte Neuroscience Research Center will focus on researching causes of and possible treatments for schizophrenia through studying the chemical Kynurenic acid.
It is known that Kynurenic acid plays a large role in breaking-down the amino acid Tryptophan, which can affect people's moods, attention, and memory when high levels appear in the brain. Previous research has shown that people with schizophrenia have more Kynurenic acid in their brain than individuals without the disorder, which contributes to cognitive abnormalities, possibly leading to schizophrenia.
With the help of this $10.7 million grant, the research team at UMD Baltimore will study the effect Kynurenic acid has in the brain and it's relationship to schizophrenia both through laboratory projects and clinical trails.
The University of Maryland, Baltimore is a growing life science research marketplace actively receiving new grants for both research activities and to help establish new research buildings on campus:
- In the 2012 fiscal year, the University of Maryland, Baltimore ranked 29th in terms of the amount of Life Science R&D Expenditures, totaling $406,110,000.
- The University of Maryland, Baltimore received $141,075,526 in total NIH funding in the 2013 fiscal year, ranking 39th.
- The University of Maryland, Baltimore is constructing a new $305.4 million School of Medicine Research Building that is expected to be completed in 2017.
- UMB School of Medicine and Advanced Particle Therapy have been constructing a $200 million Proton Therapy Cancer Treatment Center expected to open in 2015.
- The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases awarded a 5 year $10.7 million grant to the UMB Schools of Medicine and Dentistry to study the causes, prevention and treatments of STD's.
- UMB School of Medicine received a $3.7 million 4 year grant from the NIH to develop personalized medicine programs to diagnose and treat monogenic diabetes.
Biotechnology Calendar, Inc. is pleased to announce the 1st annual BioResearch Product Faire™ event happening at the University of Maryland, Baltimore in May 2015. Biotechonology Calendar Inc. has been producing life science tradeshows at research universities around the U.S. for more than 20 years that give life science researchers the chance to meet with lab supply companies to find the best new products and technologies to help with their research. If you are interested in attending the upcoming Baltimore event either as an exhibitor or as a researcher, please visit the appropriate link below. You can also find more than 60 biotech shows happening in 2015 on the 2015 trade show calendar.