Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 1:21 EDT

IMAGINE NO IC Research Program Awards

May 7, 2012

MCLEAN, Va., May 7, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Three researchers, seeking to improve our understanding about interstitial cystitis(IC), a chronic painful bladder condition of unknown cause and without a cure, received grants from the Interstitial Cystitis Association (ICA).

“It can be challenging for scientists with novel IC research concepts to collect the preliminary data to support proposals for more robust funding,” said Barbara Gordon, ICA Executive Director. “The ICA Pilot Research Program provides researchers with the initial grant monies needed to get their projects off the ground.”

The ICA Pilot Program, established in 1985 and funded through the IMAGINE NO IC campaign, enables researchers to collect the data required to prepare competitive applications for government and industry grants.

“Last year, we awarded two biomarker grants and one epidemiology grant,” added Gordon. “This year, two awardees are researching what is happening in the bladder wall on a cellular level, and the third is investigating potential genetic links of IC.”

Susan Keay, MD, PhD, Veterans Administration Medical Center, Baltimore, MD, who has dedicated her research career to trying to figure out the mystery of IC, takes a different look at what is happening in the IC bladder. Her team will look at the role of the “frizzled 8-related antiproliferative factor” made by these cells. The resulting abnormal bladder lining may be the reason for changes in permeability of the lining.

Alice Rickard, MS, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, MO, hopes to advance our understanding about pregnancy and IC. For some, though not for all, IC symptoms subside during this special time. Like Dr. Keay, Rickard is investigating the cell layers of the bladder lining. However, she will be investigating changes to the bladder wall that occur during pregnancy in response to fluctuations in hormones.

Kristina Allen-Brady, PhD, MSPH, MPT, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, and her team will analyze datasets from a genealogy database for the state of Utah that is linked to medical diagnosis data. Using this unique resource, this team will describe the familial clustering of individuals diagnosed with IC.

The ICA advocates for IC research dedicated to discovery of a cure and better treatments, raises awareness, and serves as a central hub for the millions who suffer with IC. ICA Pilot Research Grants are funded by private donations through the Imagine No IC research fund (www.ichelp.org/imaginenoic).

CONTACT: Barbara Gordon, 703-442-2071, bgordon@ichelp.org

SOURCE Interstitial Cystitis Association

Source: PR Newswire