Children's Hospital Boston researcher recognized by 2006 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN 50 award
November 12, 2006
Children's Hospital Boston researcher Larry Benowitz, PhD, was one of 50 people recognized in November, 2006 by Scientific American for innovative research.
Benowitz's research focuses on restoring nerve function lost as a consequence of stroke or injury. Victims of traumatic injury, stroke or neurodegenerative diseases can suffer permanent and often devastating losses in movement, sensation, bodily functions, and thinking, due to deterioration in the central nervous system (CNS: brain, spinal cord, eye). The goals of the Benowitz lab are to discover the basic mechanisms that control the growth of nerve connections and to apply insights from this work to promote regeneration and functional recovery after CNS injury.
Scientific American recognized Benowitz for work with oncomodulin, a protein secreted in injured eyes by immune cells called macrophages. When oncomodulin is given with compounds that enhance its activity, it can increase nerve regeneration fivefold to sevenfold in rats with injured optic nerves.
Children's Hospital Boston is home to the world's largest research enterprise based at a pediatric medical center, where its discoveries have benefited both children and adults since 1869. More than 500 scientists, including eight members of the National Academy of Sciences, 11 members of the Institute of Medicine and 10 members of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute comprise Children's research community. Founded as a 20-bed hospital for children, Children's Hospital Boston today is a 347-bed comprehensive center for pediatric and adolescent health care grounded in the values of excellence in patient care and sensitivity to the complex needs and diversity of children and families. Children's also is the primary pediatric teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School. For more information about the hospital and its research visit: www.childrenshospital.org/newsroom.
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