Laura Nagy, PhD, a staff member in the Lerner Research Institute’s Department of Pathobiology, received a five-year, $11 million P50 “program project” grant from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism to create the Northern Ohio Alcohol Research Center. The regional collaboration consists of researchers across Cleveland Clinic, Case Western Reserve University, Northeast Ohio Medical University and Ohio State University.
The grant, titled “Alcohol and Tissue Injury from Mechanisms to Treatments,” includes both pilot projects and more established research ideas—ranging from investigating inflammatory pathways involved in chronic ethanol exposure to teaming with treatment clinicians to help prevent alcohol-related diseases before they begin. “This grant allows us to expand our influence from basic, lab bench-based research to actually helping prevent disease to those in need,” Dr. Nagy said. “Early intervention is important in individuals with alcohol abuse disorders, because there are very few treatments for end-stage liver disease other than transplantation.”
Dr. Nagy is an expert in alcoholic liver disease, which kills more than 18,000 patients each year in the United States alone. She has published extensively on the mechanisms of injury in alcohol and non-alcohol related liver diseases and how alcohol abuse can exacerbate other diseases, such as obesity and cancer. The new center is an expansion of her previous work as director of the Cleveland Alcohol Center and Lerner Research Institute’s Liver Disease Research Center and includes an outstanding team of basic and clinical investigators.