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Release: April 6, 1999

UI department of anatomy and cell biology researchers receive research grants

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Three University of Iowa researchers in the College of Medicine's department of anatomy and cell biology recently received grants for their work.

Robin L. Davisson, Ph.D., assistant professor of anatomy and cell biology, received a Carver Medical Research Initiative Grant for her project titled "Brain site-selective gene deletion as a tool for understanding central control of cardiovascular function."

Davisson's grant is for $30,000 and runs from April 1, 1999 to March 31, 2000.

Davisson's work will focus on inducing gene knockout in selective sites in the brain.

Dawn A. Kirschmann, Ph.D., assistant research scientist in anatomy and cell biology, received the Florence Lindsay Young Investigator Award for her project titled "Role of lysyl oxidase in breast cancer metastasis."

Lysyl oxidase, an enzyme that functions in the nucleus as well as outside of cells, is abundantly present in breast cancer cells that have a highly invasive and metastatic phenotype. This project begins to assess the involvement of lysyl oxidase in promoting breast cancer cell invasion and metastasis. This award is for $14,700 and runs from March 1, 1999 to Feb. 28, 2000.

Jeanne M. Snyder, Ph.D., professor of anatomy and cell biology, will receive $996,100 from the National Institutes of Health for her four-year project "Retinoic acid receptors and alveoli formation." Currently, there is no way to repair alveoli destruction in the lungs from emphysema. Snyder and her co-investigator, Steven McGowan, M.D., associate professor of internal medicine, are studying whether retinoic acid, a metabolite of vitamin A, will cause alveoli to reform.

Snyder's grant started April 1.