• Project investigates Treatment Options for Brain Injury
    Professor Roslyn Bill

Research News

Project investigates Treatment Options for Brain Injury

Oct 06 2023

A three-year collaborative project focused on preventing damage caused by swelling of the central nervous system (CNS) has received a US$400,000 grant from the Eshelman Institute for Innovation (EII).

Co-principal investigators, Dr Kevin Frankowski, assistant professor for the Center for Integrative Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy (North Carolina) and Professor Roslyn Bill, professor of biotechnology at Aston University, (UK) will be leading research into development of treatments for traumatic brain injury.

Dr John Bamforth, executive director of the EII and a former graduate of Aston University, said: “We are extremely excited to see this collaboration begin. EII embraces bringing together the brightest and best scientists to solve major patient needs. Personally, it is also a delight to see the number one school of pharmacy in the US partner with Aston.”

Dr Frankowksi said: “The validation of non-surgical approaches to treat the CNS swelling that may occur following a stroke or traumatic brain or spine injuries remains a critical unmet medical challenge. Safe and effective treatment options are urgently needed for the millions of patients worldwide who suffer from these injuries every year. I am excited to partner with Roslyn Bill and her team to develop first-in-class small molecule candidates as potential therapeutic agents to treat the underlying cause of CNS swelling post stroke or accident.”

“It gives me unparalleled access to the medicinal chemistry expertise at EII and I’ll be working with a world expert in their neuropharmacology area, Kevin Frankowski. That will allow us to combine the discovery that I’ve made on the biological mechanism behind traumatic brain injury and Kevin’s deep knowledge of the chemistry. I can’t think of a better partner for that,” added Professor Bill.  “This work will get us closer to a medicine for people who’ve had a traumatic injury to the brain or spinal cord. There’s currently nothing available so the potential is huge.”

Established in 2014 with a $100 million commitment from Dr Fred Eshelman, the EII provides translational grant funding to Carolina faculty for therapeutic research focused on oncology, infectious disease and neuroscience (including rare diseases). It also welcomes ideas for devices and diagnostics and other therapeutic areas and services, encouraging collaborative research proposals across a variety of diverse disciplines, departments, schools and institutions. 

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