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How Obama’s stimulus has helped docs’ research

February 4, 2010

Steven Kelsen (L) and Salim Merali

Last fall, Steven Kelsen in the department of pulmonary and critical care medicine, and Salim Merali in the department of biochemistry at Temple University, were the recipients of a highly competitive grant, funded through the National Institutes of Health, as part of President Obama’s American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.

The two researchers received the RC2 Challenge Grant to help further their research on chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) by using proteomics technology to identify cell proteins that could be used as biomarkers for the disease.

Merali, director of the School of Medicine’s proteomics core facility and principle investigator with Kelsen, said they were happy to be receiving the funding since the competition level was more difficult than with the standard funding process.

“Obviously, without the stimulus money, it would be very hard to get grants and the money to do this really important work,” he said about the two-year, $1.5 million grant. “As researchers, we are happy to have this type of funding available to us an option. The ARRA funding is something that is very short term, but will have a big impact in the long term through the success of our work.”

Merali and Kelsen will collaborate with Gerard Criner, chief of pulmonary and critical care medicine, and Zoran Obradovic, director of the Center for Information Science and Technology, on this project.

See a video of Kelsen and Merali’s work.

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