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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University September 8, 2003 | Vol. 33 No. 2
Hopkins School of Public Health to be Part of Regional Biodefense Center

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is one of 16 biomedical research institutions that will comprise the new Middle Atlantic Regional Center of Excellence for Biodefense and Emerging Infectious Diseases Research established by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

On Sept. 4, the University of Maryland School of Medicine announced it had been awarded a five-year $42 million grant from NIAID to lead the Middle Atlantic Regional Center of Excellence, which will work to develop new and improved vaccines, diagnostic tools and treatments from potential biological agents and infectious diseases. Proposed projects include developing new vaccines against anthrax, smallpox, Ebola and West Nile viruses.

More than 60 scientists will be participating as investigators and co-investigators of research projects. Myron M. Levine, director of the Center for Vaccine Development at Maryland's School of Medicine, is principal investigator. Donald Burke, director of the Center for Immunization Research at Hopkins' School of Public Health, is co-principal investigator.

"This network represents an unprecedented use of medical research capabilities to combat terrorism," Burke said. He, along with Levine, will serve on the five-member executive committee that will provide senior coordination of the RCE.

The Middle Atlantic RCE is one of eight to be established nationwide with grants totaling approximately $350 million over five years. Each is comprised of a lead institution and others located primarily in the same geographical region.

In addition to the University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins, the Middle Atlantic group includes the University of Pennsylvania; University of Virginia; Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences; Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University; Virginia Bioinformatics Institute; University of Pittsburgh; George Washington; Georgetown; West Virginia University; Drexel; University of Vermont; University of Missouri, Kansas City; University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute; and Virginia Commonwealth University.


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