UC Receives 7 More Years of NIH Funding for Reproductive Medicine Research
The University of Cincinnati (UC) has once again been selected by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as a member of a network that conducts reproductive medicine and contraception research.
"There are only a handful of us who do this research. We are the innovators,” says Michael Thomas, MD, head of UC Health Reproductive Medicine Research (RMR) and director of the division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility in the department of obstetrics and gynecology at UC.
UC Health RMR is a stand-alone research facility for conducting outpatient clinical trials specific to women’s health. Major areas of research include: gynecology (contraception, menstrual cramps, endometriosis, and vaginal infection), menopause (osteoporosis, libido, vaginal atrophy, hormone replacement therapies) and infertility.
UC was first chosen to participate in NIH-supported research and research training programs in 1995, and again in 2003, as part of the NIH’s Contraceptive Clinical Trials Network (CCTN). The CCTN, a network of 19 research centers funded by the National Institute for Child Health and Development (NICHD), serves to support research on male and female contraception and to conduct clinical trials of new contraceptive drugs and devices.
Projects at UC have included research studies on male and female condoms, spermicides, intrauterine devices, vaginal rings, contraceptive patches and more, says Rose Maxwell, PhD, clinical trials director at the RMR. Assistant professor and UC Health reproductive endocrinologist Julie Sroga, MD, is the co-investigator.
These NIH-supported studies, Maxwell says, are mechanisms to do large population research, either related to public health issues or as mechanisms for smaller companies who may have sound science, but don’t have the financial ability to have their products tested.
The RMR, she says, receives funding from federal and industry sources and as an academic health center actively writes and receives grant funding from the NIH.
"We are all very excited about the contract renewal,” says Thomas, adding that he anticipates the research projects to come to the RMR will bring in "$3 to $5 million” over the next seven years, which is the term of the contract.
The prior two NIH contracts, Thomas says, brought an estimated $10 million to the university.