The US Department of Health and Human Services has announced two grants to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to advance research into cellular therapies and biomedicine.
The seven-year grant of $16.8m from the National Institutes of Health will be used to develop human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) to improve platelet supplies for haematology and oncology patients.
Under the platelet grant, awarded jointly to the Children’s Hospital and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/University of Washington Cancer Consortium, researchers will pursue generating platelets from hESCs.
The other two-year grant of $997,000 from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute also supports stem cell research, but focuses on a more recently discovered type of cell, induced pluripotent stem cells.
The Grand Opportunity Grant awarded to haematologist Mitchell Weiss is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to support novel research designed to advance an area of biomedicine.
Platelets are naturally occurring blood cells that help control bleeding and assist in wound healing and deliver customised proteins to injured blood vessels.