Flinn Scholars News

New ASU engineering dean brings $18 million genome grant in tow

Flinn staff reports


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The Microscale Life Sciences Center (MLSC), led by Deirdre Meldrum, the new dean of Arizona State University's Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering, has been awarded an $18 million grant to continue its role as one of the national Centers for Excellence in Genomic Science (CEGS).

Awarded by the National Human Genome Research Institute, the five-year award is one of the largest individual grants in ASU's history.

The MLSC focuses on using microscale technology innovation to investigate cell growth and death, shedding light on cancer, heart disease, and strokes--the leading fatal diseases in the United States.

The center is currently developing miniature automated systems to rapidly detect and analyze the differences between healthy and diseased body cells.

"Our vision is to examine the genesis of diseases directly at the individual cell level, at increasing levels of complexity that progressively move toward an understanding of disease in living organisms," Meldrum said.

"Real-time analysis of individual cells is essential for tracing the link between genomics, cell function and disease," she added.

The MLSC was established at University of Washington in 2001 with an initial $15 million grant. Meldrum will take the program with her to ASU when she assumes her position as dean in January.

The program will continue collaborating with researchers at University of Washington, Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass., and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

For more information:

"18 million grant fuels Microscale Life Sciences Center," ASU press release, 09/01/2006