RD160 - Commonwealth Health Research Board 2011/2012 Annual Report

Executive Summary:
The Commonwealth Health Research Board (CHRB) was established in 1997 by the Virginia General Assembly using funds provided from the conversion of Trigon from a mutual company to a stock company. The Board provides grant funding for creative and innovative research projects that have scientific merit and hold promise for maximizing human health benefits for citizens of the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Board awards grants for traditional medical and biomedical research as well as research related to health services and the delivery of healthcare.

Since its inception, the CHRB has made 141 grant awards totaling $10.7 million in grant funding to institutions of higher education and other not-for-profit or nonprofit organizations that conduct health, or health related research in Virginia. When the required 33% matching funds are added to the CHRB funded amount, the total project funds amount to $15.2 million for health research in Virginia.

Grants have been awarded to institutions of higher education and other organizations across the Commonwealth to include: Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters, Eastern Virginia Medical School, George Mason University, Radford University, University of Virginia, and Virginia Commonwealth University.

Grants have been awarded for research on a wide variety of important health conditions effecting thousands of Virginians, including: support for studying new approaches for treating breast cancer; developing improved HIV therapy; examining a potential new anti-cancer drug; exploring new treatment of multi-drug resistant bacteria; identifying the progression of breast pre-cancer to invasive malignancies; La Crosse virus; Autism Spectrum Disorders; renal injury in newborn infants; schizophrenia; sepsis; and diabetes.

The CHRB encourages collaborative research efforts and gives priority to those research efforts where Board support can be leveraged to foster contributions from other entities. CHRB grant recipients have leveraged approximately $20.5 million in additional private and federal grant funds to further their research studies. In addition, numerous publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals and periodicals as well as presentations of the data at regional and national scientific meetings have resulted from CHRB grant funded research projects.

We are proud of the accomplishments of the CHRB and our grant recipients as we work towards a healthier future for all Virginians. As Chairman, I am pleased to present the 2011/2012 Annual Report.

Robert S. Call, M.D., Chairman
Commonwealth Health Research Board