Principal investigator Michelle Theus, associate professor of molecular and cellular neurobiology in the Department of Biomedical Sciences and Pathobiology (DBSP), and co-investigators Hehuang “David” Xie, associate professor of epigenomics and computational biology in DBSP, and John Matson, associate professor of chemistry in Virginia Tech's College of Science, have been awarded a five-year R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to improve the research and medical communities’ understanding of collateral remodeling following stroke and how this impacts the microenvironment in which neurons repair themselves.

TITLE
Novel Cellular and Molecular Regulation of Collateral Remodeling in Ischemic Stroke

FUNDING AGENCY
NIH / National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

TOTAL AWARD
$1,733,852
Direct: $1,098,852
Indirect: $635,000

DURATION OF AWARD
5 years: July 1, 2019 — June 30, 2024

KEY FACULTY PERSONNEL
PI
: Michelle Theus
Co-I: Hehuang “David” Xie and John Matson

SIGNFICANCE
The coronary and cerebrovascular disease remains the leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the US, afflicting more than 1.8 million Americans each year. Ischemic injury following vascular occlusion is often dictated by the extent and remodeling of pre-existing pial collateral or “by-pass” vessels (arterogenesis). Therapeutic arteriogenesis has become a novel strategy for the prevention and treatment of tissue ischemia. The proposed studies focus on an important yet understudied area of brain research. Our overall goal is to greatly improve the research and medical communities’ understanding of collateral remodeling following stroke and how this impacts the microenvironment in which neurons repair themselves. New insights into the novel mechanism(s) that may restrict this important adaptive response to vascular obstruction will advance treatment strategies for improving neurorestoration in the brain.