Goal 4: Develop Workforce and Resources

Training approaches in lymphatic biology

The lymphatic vascular network connects the parenchymal interstitium through the nodes to the veins. Lymph serves as the transport pathway between these compartments and via its flow, controls interstitial fluid, macromolecular exchange, lipid absorption, immune cell trafficking and is critical to edema prevention/resolution, lipid metabolism, inflammation and immunity. Knowledge of this vascular network lags far behind ...more »

Submitted by (@dcz000)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

NIH has acknowledged that the lack of training in the field of lymphatic biology has impaired research progress in the area. Traditional methods that the NIH uses (T32) have not adequately addressed this issue as there are currently NO such programs in existence. One of the critical problems that must be overcome to advance the field is that few individual institutions in the US have a large enough body of lymphatic biology investigators to fit the classic training grant schemes. Overcoming this hurdle will significantly help advance research in the field. Consideration of other innovative approaches that utilize web-based or other methods to deliver distance education among local or regional institutions in this field should be investigated. Establishment of these innovative approaches would broaden the pool of investigators for research training and would significantly advance the field and thus be of high impact.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Research in the lymphatic biology field has historically lagged behind other vascular areas. However, interest in lymphatic biology and medicine has grown rapidly over the last decade. The Lymphatic Education & Research Network (formerly LRF) has had a long-standing commitment to developing research and training in lymphatic biology through its post-doctoral fellowship program, support for conferences/symposia and by providing travel funds for early-stage investigators to attend these meetings. Since very few places in the US have enough researchers trained and active in lymphatic biology, initiatives to broaden the base for research training would have to utilize novel approaches. Thus, the challenge will be to develop training programs that can address the needs of new lymphatic biologists at multiple institutions at geographically distributed sites. Approaches that use modern communication IT technology, and distance learning methods could deliver parts of the training. But innovative approaches to incorporate training beyond didactic learning need to be developed.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : D. Zawieja

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

National network to study the pathobiology of sepsis

Sepsis is the leading cause of death in hospitalized patients, the 3rd leading cause of death in all people in the US, the most common condition leading to widespread vascular collapse, among the most common causes of respiratory failure, and a frequent cause of acute cardiac dysfunction.

Submitted by (@greg.martin)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Developing a national network to address important aspects of sepsis (causes and consequences of cardiac dysfunction, molecular determinants of respiratory failure) and serve as a trials group for testing novel interventions for new discoveries.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Society of Critical Care Medicine Executive Committee/Council

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4 up votes
2 down votes
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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Novel methods to diagnose and treat microvascular ischemia

Microvascular ischemia is common, particularly in the setting of critical illness. We need better ways to evaluate, diagnose and treat these conditions, whether they relate to microvascular myocardial ischemia, as a primary diagnosis of complication of other acute illness, or non-myocardial ischemia during the course of surgery, injury, infection or acute illness.

Submitted by (@greg.martin)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Development of effective diagnostics would lead to improved treatments for myocardial and non-myocardial microvascular ischemia, and also advance understanding to extend the advance beyond this setting.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Society of Critical Care Medicine Executive Committee/Council

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Vascular biology and the pathophysiology of sepsis

Unravel the cellular & molecular mechanisms related to the vascular biology of sepsis and related cardiovascular collapse. The goal is to develop a new scientific framework for the prevention of sepsis related morbidity and mortality by applying novel approaches to discover new targets for biomarkers and therapy by promoting multidisciplinary research required for scientific cross-talk between complementary research disciplines ...more »

Submitted by (@greg.martin)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Society of Critical Care Medicine Executive Committee/Council

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4 net votes
8 up votes
4 down votes
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Goal 3: Advance Translational Research

Human Heart Systems Biology

In the human failing heart, it is the systems biology that ultimately fails: electrical, mechanical, and chemical perturbations in their function do not manifest in isolation, but critically impact on each other in health and disease. Investigation of human myocardium, unlike inbred rodent models, is challenging since no two humans are identical. There is a need for the collection and assessment of clinical patient data, ...more »

Submitted by (@janssen.10)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Procured/stored tissue from these hearts could be made available NHLBI/NIH-wide, and studied by a large number of investigators on protein levels, RNA/DNA level, and/or histological assessments. This data could then be correlated to any other parameter assessed on these hearts, providing correlative guidance, through systems biology/neural network programming, for future mechanistic studies. For each additional parameter investigated, the number of correlation analysis (with any and all parameters, including clinical and biometric parameters) would mathematically double.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Supporting the basic collection of these in vivo and in vitro parameters and possibly the logistics for tissue distribution to collect correlative mechanical, proteomics, genomics, and histology data for correlation with the in vivo and in vitro data would allow for an NIH/NHLBI-wide translational approach to human heart failure that could encompass everyone’s “favorite” molecule, protein, pathway, and disease etiology. A logistical challenge is that such a project would likely exceed the funding of a single standard grant, but more importantly would surely exceed the standard 4-5 year duration, requiring long-term vision, planning, and buy in from NIH/NHBLI and investigators.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Paul Janssen

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13 up votes
7 down votes
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Goal 1: Promote Human Health

Do our modern "traditional" sleep schedules defy nature?

Here's an interesting article which shows that the modern tradition of eight hours of unbroken sleep might actually be unnatural, and quite different from what our ancestors typically did: http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-16964783 So, maybe the majority of our modern societies (even the people without recognized sleep disorders) are unwisely fighting against biology? Perhaps a lot of people's health issues, such as ...more »

Submitted by (@apollia112)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

See comments

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

See comments

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Apollia

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5 net votes
23 up votes
18 down votes
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Goal 4: Develop Workforce and Resources

Establishment of an independent study section on Pulmonary Vascular Biology and Translational Research

The research on pulmonary vascular biology including smooth muscle cell biology and endothelial cell biology and related pulmonary vascular diseases such as pulmonary hypertension and related right heart failure, and endothelial dysfunction in lung vascular inflammation and acute lung injury, as well as pulmonary embolism and lung transplantation has been rapidly expanding. The field is attracting an ever increasing ...more »

Submitted by (@yyzhao)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Establishment of a study section on Pulmonary Vascular Biology and Translational Research will provide adequate funding to stimulate innovative research on this rapidly expanding field and promote translational research and thereby promote human health by providing potential novel therapeutic strategies for the devastating diseases such as pulmonary hypertension and acute lung injury.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Youyang Zhao, Kurt Denmark, Asrar B. Malik, Mark Gladwin, Jahar Bhattacharya, Michael Matthay, Sharon Rounds, Jason Yuan

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23 net votes
50 up votes
27 down votes
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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

UNDERSTANDING SLEEP AND CIRCADIAN DISORDERS AT A BASIC MECHANISTIC LEVEL

We need to understand sleep and circadian disorders at a more mechanistic level. This applies to both the pathogenesis of these disorders and to their impact on health. New neurobiological and molecular tools facilitate this research. The focus needs to be not only in brain but also the impact of these disorders on future of peripheral organs. The elucidation of the fundamental functions of sleep and the impact of ...more »

Submitted by (@jnoel0)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Much of the research on the consequences of sleep/circadian disorders has focused on their consequences or behavior. This type of research needs to be continued and there are new opportunities in this area. These behavioral studies need to be established in model systems to parallel studies in humans. In addition, new neurobiological approaches, including optogenetics and use of DREAD, provide new tools for this investigation. Moreover, we now have powerful molecular tools to evaluate effects of sleep/circadian disorders both in humans and animal models. These include microarrays, RNA seq, etc. Moreover, genetic studies, e.g., in restless legs syndrome, have identified gene variants conferring risk for the disorder. We do not know, however, how these particular genes are involved in the pathogenesis of the disorder or whether they represent potentially targets for drug intervention. There is a need for studies both in animal models and in humans to elucidate the function of these genes. Studies in other areas are obtaining stem cells from biopsies in patients and then turning these into relevant target cells such as neurons to elucidate gene function using in vitro approaches.

The impact of this effort will be the following:

 

a. Taking our understanding of pathogenesis of sleep and circadian disorders to a new level.

b. Understanding the consequences of sleep and circadian disorders on different end organs at a more in-depth molecular level.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

The sleep and circadian field have access to all the major cells systems for these studies—C. elegans, aplysia, Drosophila, zebra-fish, mice, etc. Moreover, there are already gene variants identified in human studies which require follow-up functional studies. The field has the expertise in all of the techniques described above. Moreover, there are more validated animal models for many of the common sleep disorders. Thus, this new approach is very feasible. 

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Sleep Research Society

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232 up votes
53 down votes
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Goal 1: Promote Human Health

Intersecting Developmental Biology with Vascular Physiology and Biology

Although many think of the vasculature as a lump sum of vessels that all react in a similar fashion to a certain stimulus, e.g., alpha-adrenergic activation, this is not the situation. For example, coronary resistance vessels show little to no direct response to alpha-adrenergic activation while resistance vessels in most organs show marked constriction. Another example is the response of different vessels to angioplasty ...more »

Submitted by (@wchilian)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Compelling Question (CQ)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

A challenge facing many specialists in vascular medicine, vascular surgery, and cardiology is understanding the ramifications, and the basis, of the vascular pathology in the context of the organ system. Another way of re-stating this as a question is: Are the unique attributes of the vascular biology, pathology and physiology of a particular organ system connected to specific aspects of development. This question would help both the basic on clinical scientists understand the basis of why a blood vessel in the kidney may be different than one in the heart, or in the brain with the goal of devising more selective therapies to approach vascular disease in specific organs. Scientists in the area of vascular development have long appreciated that vascular cells in different organs arise from different embryological origins; yet how this information translates into the intricacies of vascular control, or responses to pathology is not resolved. Understanding the basic biological mechanisms of how the embryological source of the vasculature affects pathology and physiology could engender treatment of vascular disorders.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

This idea could be implemented by encouraging multi-PI efforts from vascular developmental biologists, and investigators engaged in studies of microvascular control mechanisms and/or vascular biologists interested in vascular pathologies such as restenosis and vascular lesions. Advances in fate mapping techniques have enabled developmental biologists to track embryological origins of cells into specific organ systems into adulthood. With such a multi-faceted approach a better understanding of vascular physiology and pathophysiology will be obtained that hopefully will be translated into more effective treatments.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : William M. Chilian

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26 up votes
11 down votes
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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Redox regulation of cardiovascular and lung disease through thiols

Redox imbalance as represented by alterations in oxidative versus reductive stresses are well appreciated to occur during nearly all forms of cardiovascular and lung diseases. However, specific molecular mechanisms responsible for these changes remain largely unknown and poorly organized. Study of redox biology principals has revealed that protein cysteine thiols are a unique target for redox posttranslational modifications ...more »

Submitted by (@ckevil)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

Protein cysteine thiols are recognized to be important for multiple signaling and cell biology functions due to unique properties of oxidation/reduction resulting in a 'thiol switch'. However, oxidative modifications of thiols are highly complex involving nitrosation, sulfhydration, sulfenylation, and glutathiolyation among many others. It has become increasingly clear that these posttranslational modifications are associated with cardiovascular and pulmonary pathophysiology. Yet, many important questions remain such as: how these thiol modifications occur during disease and differ from health? How do these thiol switches impact protein function involved in cellular pathophysiology? And can thiol switch manipulation be exploited for therapeutic purposes to maintain cellular and organ health or treat disease? In order to begin to answer these questions, careful and comprehensive investigations are required to understand thiol-switching principals employing a host of molecular, biochemical and pathophysiological approaches.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

Given the significant advances in quantitative analytical chemical and molecular techniques, molecular redox mediators and pathways, non-invasive imagine modalities and comprehensive translational study designs; multiple fields are uniquely poised that could provide significant insight into this critical challenge. Primary objectives would be to establish consensus analytical methodologies, chemical and molecular biology approaches, and cellular and animal models in conjunction with rigorous clinical investigations. Results from efforts at understanding the importance of ‘thiol switches’ will make significant clinical impact on cardiovascular and lung pathogenesis and would feasibly be accomplished in 5-10 years.

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Goal 2: Reduce Human Disease

Bringing Personalized Biochemistry and Biophysics to Bear on Problems of Personalized Heart, Lung and Blood Medicine

Precision medicine will provide unprecedented opportunities to tailor health care based on knowledge of personal patterns of genetic variations. These variations usually impact protein or RNA sequences, resulting in altered properties. These alterations can result in increased susceptibility to a particular disease or intolerance to common therapeutics. To take full advantage of knowing a patient’s set of gene variations, ...more »

Submitted by (@chuck.sanders)

Is this idea a Compelling Question (CQ) or Critical Challenge (CC)? : Critical Challenge (CC)

Details on the impact of addressing this CQ or CC :

As detailed in the attached review (Kroncke et al. Biochemistry 2015, 54, 2551−2559) the successful practice of personalized medicine will in many cases require a molecular-level understanding of the nature of the defects that are caused by disease-predisposing genetic variations. As widespread personal genome sequencing becomes routine, numerous genetic variations (many millions) of uncertain significance will be discovered. Using both experimental and computational tools associated with the fields of biochemistry, biophysics, and structural biology it is in many cases possible to ascertain whether a newly-discovered gene variation adversely impacts a critical protein or RNA function and, if so, how. Among various clinical applications this information can be used (i) to project whether a patient not currently showing symptoms for a particular disease is likely to present with that disease in the future (sometimes enabling prophylactic therapy), (ii) to help establish the molecular etiology of a disease currently afflicting the patient, and (iii) to guide the therapeutic strategy pursued for that patient.

Feasibility and challenges of addressing this CQ or CC :

My lab is already participating in a project (RO1 HL122010) with two other labs (those of Drs. Jens Meiler--Vanderbilt and Alfred George--Northwestern) to develop personalized biochemical and biophysical approaches for application to genetic variations impacting the KCNQ1 gene, potentially predisposing patients to long QT syndrome, a cardiac arrhythmia. However, our project deals with one gene and one disorder only. There clearly is a need for improved and expanded communication and collaboration between those practicing personalized/precision medicine and those who are well-equipped to provide medically actionable molecular insight using the approaches of personalized biochemistry, biophysics, and structural biology.

Name of idea submitter and other team members who worked on this idea : Charles R. Sanders, Prof. of Biochemistry, Vanderbilt University (With Drs. Alfred George--Northwestern University and Jens Meiler--Vanderbilt University)

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11 down votes
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