R&E Foundation Announces Record Grant Funding in 2016
Monday, Nov. 28, 2016
On Sunday afternoon in the Arie Crown Theater, Burton P. Drayer, MD, gave the Report of the RSNA Research & Education (R&E) Foundation, highlighting the innovative work of funded researchers and the need for continued support of the Foundation's effort to move the specialty of radiology beyond imaging.
"Year after year, R&E grant recipients pursue projects that go beyond radiologic sciences and touch every area of healthcare delivery and discovery," said Dr. Drayer, Chairman of the R&E Foundation. "It is critical that as an entire community, we promote the development of our own researchers who will be positioned to lead collaborative efforts that extend beyond radiology into every area of medicine and most importantly, patient care."
Dr. Drayer reported that Inspire — Innovate — Invest: The Campaign for Funding Radiology's Future®is moving steadily toward its goal of $17.5 million. Launched in 2014, the Campaign will help radiologists secure and maintain a leadership position in the community of innovation.
"Through this Campaign, our Foundation encourages young physician-scientists to think more about the future than the present, to grow and foster cutting-edge research efforts, and to define radiology as the specialty where the investigators are disruptive thinkers," Dr. Drayer said.
Dr. Drayer said Campaign contributions from individuals, private practice groups and corporate colleagues have already translated into record levels of grant funding.
"This year, the Foundation will support an unprecedented 101 research and education grant projects totaling $4 million, representing a 30 percent funding rate of the grant applications received," he said.
The 2016 recipients hail from 54 different institutions throughout North America and abroad. With R&E Foundation funding, recipients receive the early support and invaluable protected time that is critical to young investigators and educators.
"It is through their awards that these individuals become engaged in research and excited about the prospect of pursuing a career in academic radiology," Dr. Drayer said.
He described the project of Elizabeth Sutton, MD, a 2016 Research Scholar Grant Recipient, who hypothesizes that for a certain subset of women who have had a complete imaging response to neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC), pathology from a percutaneous MR-guided biopsy will also accurately diagnose a pathologic complete response, obviating the need for breast surgery.
"This first-in-human clinical trial could potentially cause a major paradigm shift in breast cancer treatment, offering a cost-effective, minimally invasive alternative that preserves the breast," Dr. Drayer told the audience.
He went on to describe the research of Education Scholar Grant recipient Kofoworol Soyebi, MBChB, who is addressing sickle cell disorder, a major health crisis in Nigeria that has devastating complications including stroke in children under 5 years old.
The aim of Dr. Soyebi's project is to increase TCD centers, trainers, sonographers and equipment and to facilitate the integration of TCD screening into routine management of children with SCD.
"These are but a sampling of our incredible projects that go well beyond imaging and directly to the heart of patient care," he said.
Dr. Drayer thanked the Centennial Pathfinders who stepped up early to lay the groundwork for the Campaign, as well as forward-thinking partners in private practice who donate through the Visionaries in Practice giving program.
"This year, we are especially grateful to the members of Strategic Radiology, a consortium of 26 practice groups who have generously committed $800,000 to fund the RSNA/Strategic Radiology Research Seed Grant," he added.
Dr. Drayer also thanked all of the dedicated corporate donors, or Vanguard companies, for their steadfast support of the R&E mission. Finally, he challenged the audience to join the Campaign to ensure that research in radiologic sciences continues to be conducted by radiologists.
"The need for your support is great," he said. "As NIH funding dwindles and competition for funding from other private and public sources becomes increasingly more difficult, you can fill this gap by supporting our Foundation, and you can be assured that your donation will be used directly to fund radiology research and education."