The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) has been awarded an extra $87 million from the National Institutes of Health for taking on additional tasks related to the Precision Medicine Initiative, a federal program.
Precision medicine is new approach for disease treatment and prevention that considers a person’s individual genes, environment, and lifestyle. While some advances in precision medicine have been made, the practice is not currently in use for most diseases.
That’s why last year, President Obama announced the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) in his State of the Union address. Through advances and collaboration in research and technology, the PMI is meant to bring in a new era of individualized care.
One key step of the PMI is to enroll a cohort of up to a million American volunteers, who will contribute their biomedical information to the program. In July, the NIH said that San Diego’s TSRI had been chosen to lead the Participant Technologies Center, which is facilitating the enrollment of 350,000 people (and collecting participant data).
Now TSRI is taking on a bigger role overseeing volunteer enrollment, the institute said, and its funding has jumped from $120 million to $207 million over the course of five years.
"The size of this award underscores the critical nature of this research in improving our ability to prevent and treat disease," said TSRI President Peter Schultz in a statement. "We are thrilled to be part of such a major undertaking and look forward to supporting Dr. Eric Topol in leading this unprecedented project."
Topol, who is director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute, professor of genomics at TSRI and chief academic officer at Scripps Health, will direct the award as part of the PMI Cohort Program.
To handle enrollment, TSRI will have lots of partners, including Walgreens Leidos/QTC, Quest Diagnostics, Qualcomm, and WebMD. Click here for a full list of participants.