Department of Defense Announces Second Round of Lupus Research Program Awardees
This week, the Department of Defense (DOD) announced the award of nearly $5 million to 12 innovative research projects through its Lupus Research Program.
The Lupus Research Program was established by Congress in 2017 after the Lupus Foundation of America and its advocates led a multi-year effort to create a lupus-specific research program through the DOD. In just its first two years, the Lupus Research Program has now committed nearly $10 million to lupus research that is advancing the field and will lead to breakthroughs in identifying the causes of lupus, accelerating diagnosis, and developing new medicines to prevent and treat the disease.
Lupus Research Program funding is broken up into two award mechanisms – Concept Awards and Impact Awards. Concept Awards support the exploration of highly innovative new concepts or untested theories that address important issues in lupus. Impact Awards encourage applications that support the full spectrum of research projects or ideas that specifically focus on scientific and clinical lupus issues, which, if successfully addressed, have the potential to make a major impact in lupus research.
After releasing a call for applications in May of 2018, DOD received 98 high-quality applications that were then subjected to a multi-layer peer-review process. In total, 12 applications will receive funding – 5 Concept Awards and 7 Impact Awards.
The Lupus Research Program is guided by a vision to cure lupus through a partnership of scientists, clinicians, and consumers. The program’s funding is provided on a competitive grant basis and projects are peer reviewed. Two of the Lupus Foundation of America’s medical advisors and a past board chair are serving on the programmatic panel, which sets the direction for the Lupus Research Program and helps to make funding decisions. In addition, the Foundation nominated several individuals living with lupus to serve as consumer reviewers, bringing their vital perspectives to the review of the research applications.
Funding for these innovative research programs is only possible due to the strength, passion, and dedication of lupus advocates.
Year after year, our advocates tell the lupus story to their members of Congress and urge them to support lupus research and education programs, including the Lupus Research Program. To date, DOD has now provided more than $36 million in funding for lupus research, including $15 million through the Lupus Research Program in fiscal years 2017, 2018, and 2019. Without advocates willing to share their story and advocate on behalf of themselves and others, this funding would not be possible.
To add your voice to the fight against lupus, sign up as an advocate.
Newly Funded Research Programs
Cleveland Clinic Foundation
Johns Hopkins University
St. Vincent's Institute of Medical Research
University of California, Los Angeles
University of Pittsburgh
Children's Hospital, Philadelphia
Feinstein Institute for Medical Research
University of California, San Francisco
University of Chicago
University of Colorado at Denver
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill