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Systemwide Investments

Excellence Through Innovation

Missouri map showing locations of four UM System campusesNextGen Precision Health unites the UM System’s four public research universities in a shared purpose. Our systemwide network of highly skilled researchers, energetic students, well-established partnerships, and critical infrastructure uniquely position us to generate important discoveries, safer treatments, faster diagnostics and transformational outcomes for patients in need. 

To accelerate discovery, we are investing up to $20.5 million over five years in innovative research projects. This investment provides support for core instruments and infrastructure and advances our vision for the systemwide NextGen Precision Health. Read more about the collaborative projects below.

2019 Funded Projects

Listed from largest to smallest investment as of Nov. 5, 2019

NextGen Data Science and Analytics Innovation Center

To develop a hyper-converged computational hub that will be capable of analyzing and storing massive datasets to support the NextGen Precision Health Initiative as well as other collaborative research projects across the UM System.

Funding:
UM System: $2.5 million, Campus Match: $2.5 million
PIs:
Praveen Rao UMKC
Prasad Calyam MU
Co-PIs:

Missouri Resource for Cryo-Electron Microscopy

To investigate fundamental bio-molecular interactions and enable pharmaceutical development.

Funding:
UM System: $2 million,
Campus Match: $2 million
PIs:
Michael Chapman MU
Co-PIs:

Radiopharmacology Core

To provide critical infrastructure and collaborative expertise to researchers who have ideas that can attract national funding but lack the personal expertise or laboratory facilities to fully develop a radiopharmaceutical product. The long-term vision is to develop a research pipeline where radiopharmaceutical agents can be developed by faculty systemwide, tested in cell cultures and small animals at the Institute for Nano and Molecular Innovation (INMI), then in large animals at the Veterinary Health Center, with eventual in-person studies at the NextGen Precision Health Institute.

Funding:
UM System: $1 million
Campus Match: $1 million
PIs:
J. David Robertson MU
Co-PIs:

Center for Glass Science & Technology

To purchase thermal, mechanical and optical characterization equipment for the Center for Glass Science and Technology, including an electron microprobe that will significantly enhance research capabilities across the UM System.

Funding:
UM System: $1 million
Campus Match: $500,000
PIs:
Richard Brow S&T
Co-PIs:

Imaging and Spectroscopy for Biological and Nanosciences

To upgrade UMSL’s Microscope Imaging and Spectroscopy Technology (MIST) Laboratory, which will support efforts to compete for top-tier funding opportunities, strengthen industry ties through collaboration and provide the best training for the next generation of scientists.

Funding:
UM System: $500,000
Campus Match: $500,000
PIs:
Cynthia Dupureur UMSL
Co-PIs:

NovaSeq Instrumentation and Sequencing: Leveraging MU Resources for Advancing Research

To provide researchers with the latest disruptive technology that offers quantum enhancements in speed, volume and quality of DNA sequencing at a significantly lower cost.

Funding:
UM System: $500,000
Campus Match: $500,000
PIs:
Wesley Warren MU
Co-PIs:

Developing a Radiopharmaceutical Pipeline

Utilize the MU Research Reactor (MURR) to discover new radiopharmaceutical agents and bring cancer imaging and therapy agents to patients faster.

Funding:
UM System: $400,000
Campus Match: $200,000
PIs:
Timothy Glass MU
Co-PIs:

Tumor Aptamer Theranostics for Anitgen Discovery, Immunotherapy, and Targeted Delivery

To develop therapies that will kill cancer tumors while preserving healthy tissue by using DNA-like molecules to recognize and bind to cancer targets.

Funding:
UM System: $400,000
Campus Match: $200,000
PIs:
Donald Burke MU
Co-PIs:

Exosomes and Cardiovascular Disease in Obesity and Sleep Apnea

To better understand the cellular connection between obesity and vascular disease, and to develop new targeted therapies for cardiovascular disease.

Funding:
UM System: $250,000
Campus Match: $125,000
PIs:
David Gozal MU
Co-PIs:

Modeling Early Pregnancy in Humans

To open new possibilities to study early pregnancy, develop reproductive therapies and solve fertility problems that affect half of all women worldwide during their life.

Funding:
UM System: $250,000
Campus Match: $125,000
PIs:
Thomas Spencer MU
Co-PIs:

Center for Vector-borne and Emerging Infectious Diseases

To study insect vectors to better understand the mechanics that drive the spread of disease and develop new approaches for diagnosis and treatment.

Funding:
UM System: $250,000
Campus Match: $125,000
PIs:
Deborah Anderson MU
Co-PIs:

Accelerating Development of Glycopharmaceuticals: Establishment of the UMSL Glycoscience Consortium

To establish the Glycoscience Consortium, which will build collaborations to accelerate the rational design, synthesis and evaluation of carbohydrate-based drugs.

Funding:
UM System: $200,000
Campus Match: $125,000
PIs:
Alexei Demchenko UMSL
Co-PIs:

Precision Medicine Approaches to Treat Heart Failure in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

To better understand heart failure progression in patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a genetic disorder of progressive muscular weakness.

Funding:
UM System: $200,000
Campus Match: $100,000
PIs:
Kerry McDonald MU
Co-PIs:
Maike Krenz MU
Co-Is:

What is precision health?

Precision health will develop interventions for individuals and populations to improve health outcomes. By using translational science to incorporate individual factors, such as genetics, environment and lifestyle, precision health accelerates the benefits of discovery, from cells to society.

Research & Solutions

Data Science and Analytics Innovation Center

UMKC and MU have jointly launched the NextGen Data Science and Analytics Innovation Center (dSAIC). The dSAIC will serve as a control center for NextGen Precision Health research and as a resource to analyze complex data for researchers across the UM System and industry partners. The ability to rapidly access and analyze massive datasets will accelerate research and improve outcomes not only in precision health, but also in finance, public safety, agriculture, life sciences and more. The dSAIC was jump started with $5 million funding through the UM System and a $2 million gift from former UM System president Gary Forsee and Sherry Forsee.

About the dSAIC