News Release

Thursday, October 29, 2009

NIH Awards $75 Million for Research in Minority Institutions

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), part of the National Institutes of Health, announced today that it will provide approximately $75 million over the next five years to support four institutions via NCRR's Research Centers in Minority Institutions (RCMIs) program. The RCMI program enhances research capacity and infrastructure in minority institutions. Three of the four institutions will receive funding through a new program, the RCMI Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research (RCTR). The fourth grant establishes a new RCMI center at Xavier University of Louisiana.

The RCTR awards will support clinical and translational research which focuses on cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic kidney disease, HIV/AIDS and other conditions that disproportionately impact minority and other medically underserved populations.

NCRR established the RCTR awards to promote collaborations, leverage resources, enhance training and career development activities, and increase the efficiency and speed of translating research advances to improved health outcomes.

The three institutions receiving RCTR awards are Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science (Los Angeles), Meharry Medical College (Nashville) and Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta). Each of these institutions will receive approximately $4 million per year for up to five years.

"The three inaugural RCTR institutions already have an exemplary record of transforming basic research into positive outcomes at the doctor's office and in the community," said NCRR Director Barbara Alving, M.D. "The increased efficiency and partnerships that come out of the RCTR program will accelerate this progress to improve the health of minority communities."

The fourth award adds Xavier University as a RCMI institution. Xavier will receive approximately $2 million per year for five years to develop a cancer research center. The RCMI funds will establish core laboratories, provide instrumentation and technical staff, and fund pilot research projects.

The New Orleans university suffered heavy damage as a result of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Along with strengthening Xavier's research capacity, the RCMI award should assist the ongoing process of rebuilding and recovery.

To learn more about the RCTR and other RCMI programs activities, visit

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), a part of NIH, provides laboratory scientists and clinical researchers with the resources and training they need to understand, detect, treat and prevent a wide range of diseases. NCRR supports all aspects of translational and clinical research, connecting researchers, patients and communities across the nation. For more information, visit

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit

NIH…Turning Discovery Into Health®

RCMI Awardees

Charles Drew University
$20.9 million
Accelerating Excellence in Translational Science
Principal Investigator: Keith C. Norris, M.D.

Meharry Medical College
$21.4 million
Meharry Clinical and Translational Research Center
Principal Investigators: Ayman Al-Hendy, M.D., Ph.D. and James E.K. Hildreth, M.D., Ph.D.

Morehouse School of Medicine
$22.2 million
RCMI Infrastructure for Clinical and Translational Research
Principal Investigator: Eve J. Higginbotham, M.D.

Xavier University of Louisiana
$10.1 million
Xavier's RCMI Cancer Research Program
Principal Investigator: Gene D'Amour, Ph.D.