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Founders: Padma Lakshmi, Tamer Seckin, MD
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Endofound Awards Five Organizations $50,000 Each for Endometriosis Research

Endofound Awards Five Organizations $50,000 Each for Endometriosis Research

After reviewing a record 61 grant applications, EndoFound’s Scientific Advisory Board has chosen its 2024 winners.

Grants have been awarded to researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine in Stanford, California; Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia; GYNE Research Laboratory at Université catholique de Louvain in Belgium; Jackson Lab in Farmington, Connecticut; and the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. 

Each organization will receive $25,000 a year for the next two years. The grants will cover direct costs related to research, with indirect costs limited to 10 percent of the overall budget annually. Grant recipients are required to provide reports of their progress to EndoFound after each of the two years. 

“The research by each of these five teams of scientists studying immunology, anti-inflammatory therapy for endometriosis, and the association with adenomyosis aims to provide foundational knowledge leading to early diagnosis and improved treatment options,” said Dr. Dan Martin, EndoFound’s scientific and medical director. “These grants underscore EndoFound's commitment to advancing scientific understanding and finding innovative solutions for endometriosis management.” 

According to their applications, the project titles and research goals of each winner are as follows: 

  • Stanford University

Title: Uterine NK (natural killer) cell dysfunction in endometriosis pathobiology.

Goals: Characterize NK cells in the endometrial immune microenvironment of women with endometriosis, and develop a menstrual blood liquid biopsy to investigate uterine NK cells in the endometrial immune microenvironment. 

  • Morehouse School of Medicine

Title: Assessment of Reproductive Health Improvement in Endometriosis by novel STING (stimulator of interferon genes) inhibitors.

Goals: Establish the functional role of genetic inhibitory regulation as a potent anti-inflammatory and anti-fibrotic agent using anon-hormonal oral treatment for endometriosis and associated infertility. 

  • GYNE Research Laboratory

Title: Uterine adenomyosis: elucidating the etiopathogenesis and proposing new diagnostic biomarkers.

Goals: To elucidate the mechanisms of adenomyosis-associated impaired endometrial receptivity, and to identify noninvasive biomarkers for the disease.

  • Jackson Lab

Title: Modeling Endometriosis: Uncovering the Role of Dendritic Cells (DCs) in Perpetuating Disease.

Goals: Develop and characterize a robust source of dendritic immune cells from human-induced stem cells to establish an in vitro 3D cellular system to study dendritic immune cells in endometriosis. 

  • Mayo Clinic

Title: Define the Role of Humoral Immunity in the Pathophysiology of Endometriosis.

Goals: Define the functional immunological B cell and plasma cell landscape in the endometriotic lesion microenvironment, and determine the immunoglobulin isotypes expressed by plasma cells in endometriosis.

EndoFound’s Scientific Advisory Board consists of 27 medical doctors and PhDs worldwide. Applications were received from numerous countries, including the US, Germany, France, Italy, Israel, Belgium, Australia, Kenya, and Uganda. The board’s goal, according to Dr. Martin, was to find researchers who could “potentially lead us to new diagnostic methods, treatment methods, and anything else that will improve the lives of those with endometriosis.”

EndoFound awarded several grants in 2017, 2018, and 2019 before pausing due to Covid-19. This is the first year since then that grants have been awarded. To learn more about past grant recipients and to donate to research, visit www.endofound.org/research-grants.