Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 17:24 EDT

Interstitial Cystitis Association Seeks Researchers to Study Debilitating Condition

August 31, 2011

“Imagine No IC” Research Offers Hope for Better Treatments and a Cure for Interstitial Cystitis

ROCKVILLE, Md., Aug. 31, 2011/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Interstitial Cystitis Association (ICA) has issued a call for research proposals to find better treatments and a cure for interstitial cystitis (IC), a chronic, painful bladder disorder that affects at least 4 million people in the United States. Funded through the “Imagine No IC” campaign, the ICA Pilot Research Program offers critical support to scientists with new and inventive ideas for IC research.

Because they lack preliminary data, investigators with novel IC research plans often have trouble securing funding from institutions such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH). To help them overcome this obstacle, the ICA founded the ICA Pilot Research Program in 1985. The program remains the first and only IC-dedicated research program funded by a nonprofit patient association.

“While there are treatments available to help manage the symptoms of IC, many patients are still not getting a timely diagnosis or finding the relief they need. IC can greatly limit an individual’s ability to participate in the everyday joys of life – travel, work, leisure activities, even riding in a car,” said Barbara Gordon, executive director of the Interstitial Cystitis Association. “More research is needed to find diagnostic tests, effective treatments, and ultimately a cure for this condition.”

To date, the ICA Pilot Research Program has funded over 70 IC research projects, totaling more than $1 million. Thanks to IC Pilot Research Program awards, three scientists are working now on pioneering research to definitively diagnose IC and develop targeted treatments:

  • Tony Buffington, DVM, Ph.D., and his team from The Ohio State University are evaluating a rapid biomarker-based method to differentiate IC from overactive bladder.
  • Jayoung Kim, Ph.D., with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, California, is working to understand the mechanism of degeneration of bladder epithelial cells that occurs in IC patients.
  • John Warren, M.D., and his team at the University of Maryland in Baltimore are continuing their work on the Events Preceding Interstitial Cystitis (EPIC) study.

“The ICA Pilot Research Program continues to provide researchers with the vital initial funding they need to get their ideas off the ground,” said Tony Buffington, DVM, Ph.D. “Through our and other’s efforts, we hope to create a world free of IC pain and symptoms.”

The deadline for proposals is September 30, 2011. Visit www.ichelp.org/PilotResearchProgram to learn more about the research areas of interest and guidelines to apply.

Donations and contributions to the “Imagine No IC” campaign fuel promising IC research activities and keep current projects moving forward. To learn more about contributing to this campaign, visit https://www.ichelp.org/ImagineNoIC.

About the Interstitial Cystitis Association
Since its inception in 1984, the Interstitial Cystitis Association has remained the only nonprofit health association solely dedicated to providing advocacy, research funding, and education to ensure early diagnosis and optimal care with dignity for people affected by IC. Together we will Conquer IC and Change Lives.

To learn more about IC, treatment techniques, and the latest research, visit www.ichelp.org. Find the ICA on Facebook www.facebook.com/InterstitialCystitisAssociation or follow the ICA on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ICHelp.

Awareness initiatives were funded by Cooperative Agreement Number 324349 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of CDC.

SOURCE Interstitial Cystitis Association

Source: PR Newswire