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[October 13, 2015]

SUNY Network of Excellence Awards $530,000 to Advance Understanding and Treatment of Brain Injury and Disorders


Brooklyn, NY – The State University of New York recently announced $530,000 in funding for two collaborative research projects involving SUNY Downstate Medical Center, the University at Buffalo, and Stony Brook University that will advance understanding of the human brain as part of the SUNY Brain Network of Excellence.

The projects will enhance imaging tools used to map brain activity and determine treatment of neurological disorders; and advance research into the causes of traumatic brain injury.

“The continued work of those receiving support today is likely to result in new, innovative ways to treat, cure, and possibly prevent neurological and psychiatric conditions,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “By providing our campuses with shared resources and support, the Networks of Excellence continue to foster collaboration among SUNY’s leading researchers and scientists, broadening our knowledge and deepening our understanding in some of today’s most complex fields.”

Alexander N. Cartwright, SUNY provost and executive vice chancellor, and interim president of the Research Foundation for SUNY, said, “Today’s awards reflect the depth and breadth of faculty expertise that resides in SUNY, made all the more meaningful when our talented scholars commit to working together to advance the frontiers of knowledge and address pressing medical challenges.”

Projects funded by the SUNY Brain Network include:

$450,000 to support a partnership between the University at Buffalo, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, and Stony Brook University in which researchers will use nanoparticles for real-time mapping and stimulation of brain activity in order to better understand brain function and the effects of treatment; Robert K. S. Wong, PhD, Distinguished Professor and chair of physiology and pharmacology at SUNY Downstate, is a co-principal investigator on the project;  

$80,000 for a project involving SUNY Downstate Medical Center and Stony Brook University researchers who will explore the relationship between inflammation, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD); Peter J. Bergold, PhD, professor of physiology and pharmacology at SUNY Downstate, is the project’s principal investigator. 


SUNY Downstate Medical Center, founded in 1860, was the first medical school in the United States to bring teaching out of the lecture hall and to the patient’s bedside. A center of innovation and excellence in research and clinical service delivery, SUNY Downstate Medical Center comprises a College of Medicine, Colleges of Nursing and Health Related Professions, a School of Graduate Studies, a School of Public Health, University Hospital of Brooklyn, and an Advanced Biotechnology Park and Biotechnology Incubator.

SUNY Downstate ranks twelfth nationally in the number of alumni who are on the faculty of American medical schools.  More physicians practicing in New York City have graduated from SUNY Downstate than from any other medical school.