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CSU professor wins $1.4M research grant

October 27, 2011

By Deon Broyles

Cleveland State Assistant Professor Roman Kondratov won a $1.4 million RO1 grant from the National Institute of Health to study the aging process.

According to the Center for Gene Regulation in Health and Disease’s program director Sailen Barik, the grant was awarded for five years and is the largest single category support awarded by NIH.

Kondratov’s research involves investigating the connection between the circadian clock, a biological time keeping system, and calorie restriction.

“What we have shown before is that circadian clock is an important player in the aging process,” Kondratov said. “What we plan to investigate now is if this system plays any role in calorie restriction.”

According to Kondratov, calorie restriction has proven to significantly expand the life of laboratory mice by as much as 30 percent.

“Calorie restriction is no medical intervention; it’s just a reduction in food intake,” he said.

According to Kondratov, his laboratory has mice that have a defective circadian rhythm.

“We don’t know if they will live longer or not if we reduce food for them,” he said. “If they will live longer, that means the circadian clock has nothing to do with calorie restriction.”

According to Barik, Kondratov is one of the very few scientists that have a laboratory mouse model with a gene knocked out or a gene removed.

According to Barik, gene removal allows researchers to study the connection between circadian rhythm and calorie restriction.

Kondratov works with several other GRHD members to fight human sufferings through research. According to the organization’s website, GRHD has received four significant grants between Aug. 24 and Sept. 18 of this year.

“I think GRHD is really taking off now, addressing human sufferings and human diseases; we cover a lot of different basis,” Barik said. “One thing GRHD does not have, though, is a private donation or a private endowment.

For more information about GRHD and Kondratov’s work visit www.csuohio.edu/sciences/grhd.html.