2016-04-11 20:06:22 UTC

In the News: AGA-Funded Researchers

April 12, 2016

Two researchers, supported by the AGA Research Foundation, were recently in the news for their contributions.

Each year, the AGA Research Foundation provides more than $2.5 million in research funding to spur discoveries in gastroenterology and hepatology. We were thrilled to see two AGA-funded investigators make headlines in recent weeks.

AGA-Funded Researcher Explores Novel 3D Imaging Tool for Identifying Advanced Fibrosis in Liver
As announced in a University of California San Diego press release, Rohit Loomba, MD, and team published a study in The American Journal of Gastroenterology looking at 100 patients with biopsy-proven non-alcoholic fatty liver disease to assess the efficacy of two-dimensional magnetic resonance elastography (MRE) and a novel 3D version. They found that both MRE technologies were highly accurate for diagnosing advanced fibrosis, with 3D perhaps providing additional capabilities in some patients. Dr. Loomba’s research was funded, in part, by the AGA Research Foundation.

Dr. Maldonado-Contreras Leverages AGA Funding for Pivotal Gut Microbiome Research
The University of Massachusetts Medical School announced that Ana Maldonado-Contreras, PhD, received a 2016 AGA Research Scholar Award for her work related to diet, the gut microbiome and IBD. Dr. Maldonado-Contreras will use the three-year, $270,000 AGA grant to determine whether dietary influences on the gut microbiome coincide with alterations in gut inflammation in IBD patients, and, if so, whether changes are the result of a difference in the expression of long non-coding RNAs.

Dr. Maldonado-Contreras is one of eight recipients of the 2016 AGA Research Scholar Awards. The AGA Research Foundation is grateful for the generosity of its donors, including Mrs. Athena Blackburn, Gilead Sciences and Takeda Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. Learn more about the AGA Research Foundation and check out current research funding opportunities.

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