University of Vermont

College of Medicine

Vermont Lung Center

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IDeA COBRE Grant P30 GM103532

The Institutional Development Award (IDeA) Program fosters health-related research and seeks to increase the competitiveness of investigators at institutions located in states with historically low aggregate success rates for grant awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). To provide flexible support to build research capacity, the National Institutes of Health funds applications for Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) for investigators at independent biomedical research institutions or biomedical research institutions within IDeA eligible states.

The second purpose of the COBRE program is to augment and strengthen the institutional biomedical research capacity through flexible support to expand and develop biomedical faculty research capability and enhance research infrastructure through support of a multi-disciplinary center, led by a peer-reviewed, funded investigator with expertise central to the research theme of the proposal. The ideal COBRE program has a thematic scientific focus in a specific research area, such as neuroscience, cancer, structural biology, immunology, or bioengineering, and may use basic, clinical or both research approaches to attain the goals of the proposed center. The scientific leadership provided by one or more established biomedical research faculty is critical to the success of this initiative, especially for the mentoring of promising junior investigators. The center is intended to support investigators from several complementary disciplines. It will enable the institution to develop a critical mass of investigators and enhance their competitiveness in a specific research area that accelerates the rate at which those investigators compete for other complementary NIH research grant support. It is also anticipated that, in some instances, the support through this initiative will facilitate the development of new disease specific research centers or augment the capability of existing centers.

The strategic goals of the VLC-COBRE are:

  • to develop improved methods of disease diagnosis that are minimally invasive.
  • to develop new methods for detecting inflammation (e.g. biomarkers) associated with cardiovascular and lung disease.
  • to develop and improve methods of treatment to reduce the disability and mortality burden accompanying cardiovascular and lung disease.
  • to understand the genetic basis of individual responses to disease processes and therapy.
  • to develop the scientific understanding necessary to be able to repair damaged tissue and organs.
  • to develop innovative approaches to research and health care delivery using state-of-the-art scientific technology and communication/information tools.
  • to generate mouse models appropriate for studying the development of cardiovascular and lung disease.
  • to prepare clinical investigators to undertake research that translates the results of basic science into human studies by providing training opportunities at entry and mid-career levels.
  • to create a multidisciplinary research program aimed at developing a systematic understanding of the complex interactions that underlie cell, tissue, and organ function that produce lung disease.

The NIGMS COBRE Program: The Vermont Lung Center


  1. Continue to train and attract a group of talented MD and PhD biomedical investigators
  2. Provide career development and guidance with skilled mentoring and consultation
  3. Continue a stimulating, supportive, and “cutting edge” research milieu
  4. Maintain and expand the present critical mass of lung research-related investigators in Vermont

The pursuit of these aims will ensure that we continue our current high level of productivity and impact in the peer-reviewed literature. We already have achieved success in becoming active members in mutli-center trial initiatives in cystic fibrosis, critical care, COPD (stem cells) and asthma.

This VLC-COBRE proposal also has Specific Aims directed toward enhancing the research environment at UVM in general, namely to:

  1. Maintain a cutting edge transgenic animal program for UVM
  2. Maintain a world-class small animal lung phenotyping facility
  3. Further enhance an outstanding clinical research center for lung disease
  4. Create an organized and stimulating environment for translational medical research at UVM and The University of Vermont Medical Center
  5. Stimulate collaboration and enhance grant submissions through a pilot investigation program.

Last modified August 12 2016 11:26 AM