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Release: Immediate

UI, ISU faculty to conduct collaborative research projects in animal and human health

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Faculty from the University of Iowa College of Medicine and the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine will collaborate on five research projects. Scientists will combine their expertise to investigate the causes of disease and health problems in humans and animals.

Officials from the UI and ISU announced that $122,000 has been allocated by the two colleges as "seed grants" to begin research until further grants are obtained. A symposium is also planned.

"We recognize the potential of complementary expertise among the faculty in our two colleges," said Prem Paul, D.V.M., Ph.D., associate dean for research at ISU's College of Veterinary Medicine. "By funding collaborative research, we can build from this strength and place faculty from both institutions in more competitive positions to attract extramural grants for major research studies regarding animal and human health."

Collaboration is especially important today, Paul said, as many emerging diseases have both animal and human aspects. He said, for example, researchers will study Mycobacterium paratuberculosis, the causative agent of Johne's disease in cattle which has similar characteristics to tuberculosis in humans. Other collaborative projects will focus on disease resistance and orthopedic problems.

According to Allyn Mark, M.D., associate dean for research at the UI College of Medicine, this new venture "bridges the distinctive strengths of our two institutions to advance the cause of animal and human health in Iowa and beyond."