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Urology Research Laboratory
Harrison Department of Surgical Research
Dr. Samuel K. Chacko
George M. O'Brien Program

Year 15: One-Year Pilot and Feasibility Projects


The NIDDK-sponsored George M. O’Brien Urology Research Center in the Division of Urology, Department of Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania funded two Pilot & Feasibility (P&F) Studies. The O’Brien Center is an inter-institutional, multidisciplinary program that focuses its research on the molecular mechanisms underlying the Lower Urinary Tract Disorders. The P&F grants are open to investigators from the University of Pennsylvania and other institutions in the Philadelphia area. Grants are available for established investigators interested in directing a portion of their research effort to lower urinary tract function and dysfunction or young investigators who are interested in basic, translational or clinical urologic research.

The scope of these P&F Studies are broadly defined, including proposals that address a wide range of topics in cellular/molecular biology of the epithelium in the lower urinary tract, smooth muscle development and physiology, urology and the pathogenesis of urologic diseases. The purpose of these one-year, non-renewable grants is to assist faculty in obtaining preliminary data to serve as the basis of a grant application to the NIH or other agencies for urologic research.

P&F Project #1 entitled “Micro-RNA mediated regulation of human bladder smooth muscle responsiveness” is from Masumi Eto, PhD, Associate Professor of the Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics at Kimmel Cancer Center of Thomas Jefferson University. The focus of this study is to determine the mechanisms underlying miR143/145-induced CPI-17 gene regulation in human bladder SM and to define roles of miR143/145 in human bladder SM cell phonotype change.

P&F Project #2 entitled “Relationship between physiological stress and overactive syndrome” is from Ariana L. Smith, MD, Assistant Professor of Urology in Surgery, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. The focus of this study is to examine the relationship between measures of stress response including blood pressure, heart rate, cortisol, and neuropeptides in women with OAB and controls and to examine and validate the relationship between symptoms of psychological stress and symptoms of OAB in women with OAB and controls.


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