NIH establishes Center of Excellence for influenza research at Mount Sinai

April 02, 2007

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), announced today that Mount Sinai School of Medicine is a new Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance. NIAID is awarding $23 million per year for seven years to establish six Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance around the country. Mount Sinai will help expand NIAID's influenza research as the only recognized Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance in New York City.

"Mount Sinai welcomes this high honor bestowed by NIAID for our influenza virus research and recognition of our team's hard work," said Adolfo García-Sastre, Ph.D., principal investigator for research at Mount Sinai's Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance, Professor of Microbiology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. "We look forward to building upon our past research on the influenza virus, helping the federal government research findings in order to control and weaken the impact of influenza and stop the danger of a deadly influenza pandemic."

The Mount Sinai Center of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance has been named "Center for Research in Influenza Pathogenesis" or CRIP. Mount Sinai researchers Adolfo García-Sastre and Peter Palese, in collaboration with Daniel Perez, at University of Maryland, and Ron Fouchier, at Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, will continue to conduct molecular studies to identify influenza virus genes associated with the development of disease, the adaptability of flu viruses in birds and mammals, and the transmission of flu viruses between different hosts.

Mount Sinai is globally renowned for its research on the 1918 flu virus. The goal of Mount Sinai's research is to gain greater understanding of the virus in order to use this knowledge to predict future pandemics and develop novel vaccines and treatments. In 2005, researchers reconstructed the 1918 flu virus using reverse genetics, a technique developed by Dr. García-Sastre and Dr. Palese, Chairman of the Department of Microbiology at Mount Sinai. In 2006, researchers also discovered that the reconstructed 1918 flu virus in a mouse model replicates so fast that it triggers a very strong immune system response that fails to protect animals from severe lung disease and death. This study gave insight into how highly pathogenic influenza viruses, such as the 1918 flu, cause disease.

Further research in 2007, showed modest changes in the 1918 flu virus's hemagglutinin receptor binding site- a molecular structure critical for the spread of infection- stopped viral transmissions in ferrets. This recent study could have significant clinical implications in helping scientists develop ways to break the disease cycle and possibly help reduce the risk for a potential pandemic and illness.

The six Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance awards include: St. Jude Children's Research Hospital (Memphis), University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), University of Minnesota (Minneapolis), Emory University (Atlanta), Mount Sinai School of Medicine (New York, NY), and University of Rochester (Rochester, NY).
-end-
About The Mount Sinai Hospital

The Mount Sinai Hospital is one of the nation's oldest, largest and most-respected voluntary hospitals. Founded in 1852, Mount Sinai today is a 1,171-bed tertiary-care teaching facility that is internationally acclaimed for excellence in clinical care.

About Mount Sinai School of Medicine

Located in Manhattan, Mount Sinai School of Medicine is internationally recognized for ground-breaking clinical and basic-science research, and innovative approaches to medical education. Through the Mount Sinai Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Mount Sinai trains biomedical researchers with an emphasis on the rapid translation of discoveries of basic research into new techniques for fighting disease. One indication of Mount Sinai's leadership in scientific investigation is its receipt during fiscal year 2005 of $174.1 million in research support from NIH. Mount Sinai School of Medicine also is known for unique educational programs such as the Humanities in Medicine program, which creates opportunities for liberal arts students to pursue medical school, and instructional innovations like The Morchand Center, the nation's largest program teaching students and physicians with "standardized patients" to become not only highly skilled, but compassionate caregivers. Long dedicated to improving its community, the School extends its boundaries to work with East Harlem and surrounding communities to provide access to health care and educational programs to at risk populations.

The Mount Sinai Hospital / Mount Sinai School of Medicine

Related Influenza Articles from Brightsurf:

Predicting influenza epidemics
Researchers at Linköping University, Sweden, have developed a unique method to predict influenza epidemics by combining several sources of data.

Common cold combats influenza
As the flu season approaches, a strained public health system may have a surprising ally -- the common cold virus.

Scent-sensing cells have a better way to fight influenza
Smell receptors that line the nose get hit by Influenza B just like other cells, but they are able to clear the infection without dying.

New antivirals for influenza and Zika
Leuven researchers have deployed synthetic amyloids to trigger protein misfolding as a strategy to combat the influenza A and Zika virus.

Assessment of deaths from COVID-19, seasonal influenza
Publicly available data were used to analyze the number of deaths from seasonal influenza deaths compared with deaths from COVID-19.

Obesity promotes virulence of influenza
Obesity promotes the virulence of the influenza virus, according to a study conducted in mice published in mBio, an open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology.

Influenza: combating bacterial superinfection with the help of the microbiota
Frenc researchers and from Brazilian (Belo Horizonte), Scottish (Glasgow) and Danish (Copenhagen) laboratories have shown for the first time in mice that perturbation of the gut microbiota caused by the influenza virus favours secondary bacterial superinfection.

Chemists unveil the structure of an influenza B protein
MIT chemists have discovered the structure of an influenza B protein called BM2, a finding that could help researchers design drugs that block the protein and help prevent the virus from spreading.

How proteins help influenza A bind and slice its way to cells
Researchers have provided new insight on how two proteins help influenza A virus particles fight their way to human cells.

Eating elderberries can help minimize influenza symptoms
Conducted by Professor Fariba Deghani, Dr. Golnoosh Torabian and Dr.

Read More: Influenza News and Influenza Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.