June 7, 2017
CLEVELAND – Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development, and the Foundation Fighting Blindness have announced their 2017 Gund-Harrington Scholars.
Harrington Discovery Institute partnerships are based on a shared mission to advance discoveries of new medicines that will improve human health, as well as, enhance each organization's ability to play a significant role in setting the scientific and innovation agenda in leading-edge research. These awards offer selected winners funding and drug development expertise to ensure the most promising treatments enter clinical trials where their safety and efficacy can be established.
Gund-Harrington Scholars are selected for their outstanding research programs to slow, prevent or cure blindness. The 2017 award winners are:
• Shannon Boye, PhD, University of Florida, for work in retinal degeneration and development of a novel therapy for Usher Syndrome 1B.
• Thomas Reh, PhD, University of Washington, for developing an orally bioavailable drug for the treatment of Retinitis Pigmentosa.
• Shigemi Matsuyama, PhD, Case Western Reserve University, for inhibitors of retinal cell death that treat a wide range of retinal degenerative diseases.
• Richard Kramer, PhD, University of California Berkeley, for studies of retinal degeneration and a photoswitch drug to treat Retinitis Pigmentosa.
“The Cleveland-based Harrington Discovery Institute currently supports promising discoveries in North America and the U.K.,” said Jonathan S. Stamler, MD, President, Harrington Discovery Institute. “Our collaborations with disease foundations and like-minded research institutions allow us to better address underserved areas of medicine and to bring forth new medicines where treatments remain elusive.”
“The Foundation Fighting Blindness continues to applaud Ron Harrington’s support for accelerating promising research from the bench to clinical studies,” said Gordon Gund, chairman emeritus and co-founder of the Foundation Fighting Blindness. “What’s unique and significant about the Gund-Harrington Scholar awards is the way in which our organizations combine funding with pragmatic support and translational expertise from a highly experienced cadre of pharmaceutical R&D executives. Together, the Harrington Discovery Institute and the Foundation Fighting Blindness are dedicated to continuing our collaboration to help advance the research that will defeat diseases that limit the ability of millions of people worldwide to experience the gift of sight.”
In addition to funding, award recipients receive committed drug development support and strategic advice through the Harrington Discovery Institute’s Innovation Support Center and the Foundation Fighting Blindness Clinical Research Institute for the duration of the term of the award. This includes consulting and management services from experienced pharmaceutical development professionals, as well as regulatory, intellectual property and business development assistance.
Harrington Scholars have facilitated access to BioMotiv – part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development – a for-profit commercialization company that is aligned with the Harrington Discovery Institute in mission and structure. BioMotiv was created to further advance discoveries by academic researchers in areas of unmet need.
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For Harrington Discovery Institute
For Foundation Fighting Blindness
Rhea K. Farberman
Senior Director of Communications and Marketing
Foundation Fighting Blindness has a broad network and deep domain expertise in inherited retinal diseases, a set of programs for funding discoveries and advancing them toward clinical studies, and a robust pipeline of funded projects that represent new therapeutic opportunities. The foundation is funding startup companies and for-profit initiatives through its establishment of the Clinical Research Institute (the CRI), a not-for-profit subsidiary, which can partner to provide substantial later-stage funding for high-potential projects. The Foundation Fighting Blindness is supporting several clinical trials, and many additional gene and stem cell-based human studies could begin in the next several years. For more information, please visit fightblindness.org.
Harrington Discovery Institute
The Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Ohio – part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development – aims to advance medicine and society by enabling our nation’s most inventive physician-scientists to turn their discoveries into medicines that improve human health. The institute was created in 2012 with a $50 million founding gift from the Harrington family and instantiates the commitment they share with University Hospitals to a Vision for a ‘Better World’.
The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development
The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development (The Harrington Project), founded in late February 2012 by the Harrington Family and University Hospitals of Cleveland, is a $300 million national initiative built to bridge the translational valley of death. It includes the Harrington Discovery Institute and BioMotiv, a for-profit, mission-aligned drug development company that accelerates early discovery into pharma pipelines.
For more information about The Harrington Project and the Harrington Discovery Institute, visit: HarringtonDiscovery.org.
Founded in 1866, University Hospitals serves the needs of over 1 million patients per year through an integrated network of 18 hospitals, more than 40 outpatient health centers and 200 physician offices in 15 counties throughout northern Ohio. The system’s flagship academic medical center, University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, located on a 35-acre campus in Cleveland’s University Circle, is affiliated with Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. The main campus also includes University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children's Hospital, ranked among the top children’s hospitals in the nation; University Hospitals MacDonald Women's Hospital, Ohio's only hospital for women; and University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, part of the NCI-designated Case Comprehensive Cancer Center. UH is home to some of the most prestigious clinical and research programs in the nation, including cancer, pediatrics, women's health, orthopedics, radiology, neuroscience, cardiology and cardiovascular surgery, digestive health, dermatology, transplantation and urology. UH Cleveland Medical Center is perennially among the highest performers in national ranking surveys, including “America’s Best Hospitals” from U.S. News & World Report. UH is also home to Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals – part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development. UH is the second largest employer in northern Ohio with 26,000 employees. For more information, go to UHhospitals.org.