The John A. Burns School of Medicine on the University of Hawaiʻi Mānoa campus has been awarded $18.4 million over five years for a Hawaiʻi Statewide Research and Education Partnership under the IDeA Networks for Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) program at the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. The project’s principal investigator is Professor Robert Nichols and the program coordinator is David Easa.
The Hawaiʻi INBRE program has been supported for more than 10 years by the National Institutes of Health and has recently received an additional five years of support. The current grant will be devoted to fostering biomedical careers among students at partner institutions, which include the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo College of Pharmacy, UH community colleges (Kapiʻolani CC, Windward CC, Leeward CC, Hawaiʻi CC, Maui College and Kauaʻi CC), Chaminade University and Hawaiʻi Pacific University.
In the previous round of INBRE funding, development of state-of-the-art facilities and support for entry-level junior investigators were provided at primarily undergraduate-based partner institutions to create a foundation where students could participate in cutting-edge biomedical research. A major emphasis for the research among partners is to investiage the unique resources Hawaiʻi has to offer with respect to marine and plant life for discovery of natural products with potential application as biomedicines. A second emphasis is to investigate health disparities arising in Hawaiʻi’s diverse population.
“Students in our program, who may be the first in their family to attend college, now have the exciting opportunity to pursue biomedical research as a career,” said Nichols.