SRI International Awarded National Institutes of Health Contracts to Advance Development of Treatments for Heart, Lung, and Blood Diseases

January 12, 2011

MENLO PARK, Calif., Jan. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — SRI International, an independent nonprofit research and development organization, announced today that it has been awarded two preclinical services contracts totaling $17.4 million by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), one of the National Institutes of Health. SRI researchers will support NHLBI’s Science Moving TowArds Research Translation and Therapy (SMARTT) Program to provide resources that assist translation to the clinic of novel therapeutics for the treatment of heart, lung, and blood diseases.

According to NHLBI, cardiovascular, lung, and blood diseases constitute a large morbidity, mortality, and economic burden and accounted for 43 percent of all deaths in the United States in 2006. The projected economic cost for these diseases is expected to be $705 billion this year, 23 percent of the total economic costs of all illness, injuries, and death.

SRI was awarded an $11.5 million contract to lead a Pharmacology and Toxicology Center that will work cooperatively with NHLBI and other organizations to provide rapid and cost-effective studies for potential therapies. Researchers will conduct pharmacology and preclinical studies with candidate drugs and develop scientific data such as treatment regimens and efficacy studies needed to support U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) applications for new medications.

“Our highly qualified and experienced team is pleased to support this important translational research program that will lead the way towards human clinical safety and efficacy studies with the best candidate drugs,” said Hanna Ng, Ph.D., director of preclinical safety at SRI International and the principal investigator for the SMARTT Pharmacology and Toxicology Center. “We are enthusiastic about the opportunity to help move therapeutics from the bench to the clinic.”

SRI was also awarded a $5.9 million contract to provide a Non-Biologics and Small Molecules Production Facility for the SMARTT Program. The overall objective of the contract is to support translational research and provide services as an FDA-defined current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) facility. Researchers will focus on the production and testing of therapeutics to treat heart, lung, and blood diseases.

“In coordination with other SMARTT Facilities, SRI will provide an outstanding team and modern facilities suitable for a broad range of services, from screening and synthesis through formulation, analysis, and manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients and dosage forms,” said Mary Price, Ph.D., quality control program director at SRI International and the principal investigator for the Non-Biologics and Small Molecules Production Facility.

SRI’s research groups have more than 40 years of successful experience on similar production facility programs for the National Institutes of Health.

This project has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, under Contract No. HHSN268201100017C and Contract No. HHSN268201100015C.

About SRI’s Biosciences Division

SRI’s Biosciences Division carries out basic research, drug discovery, and drug development, and provides contract services. SRI has all of the resources necessary to take R&D from Idea to IND®–from initial discovery to the start of human clinical trials–and specializes in cancer, immunology and inflammation, infectious disease, and neuroscience. SRI’s product pipeline has yielded marketed drugs, therapeutics currently in clinical trials, and additional programs in earlier stages. In its CRO business, SRI has helped government and other clients and partners advance well over 100 drugs into patient testing. SRI is also working to create the next generation of technologies in areas such as diagnostics, drug delivery, medical devices, and systems biology.

About SRI International

SRI International performs sponsored R&D for governments, businesses, and foundations. SRI also licenses its technologies, forms strategic alliances, and spins off ventures. SRI is known for major innovations in computing, health and pharmaceuticals, chemistry and materials, energy, education, national defense, sensing, and more.

SOURCE SRI International

Source: newswire

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