The Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale Announces its 2023 Awards to Seven Faculty-Led Projects to Address Autoimmune and Allergic Diseases
Affecting around 23.5 million Americans, autoimmune diseases require special attention to advance safe and effective methods of diagnosis, prevention, and treatment. The Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale has awarded seven faculty-led projects a total of $750,000 to fund their breakthrough research focused on autoimmune and allergic diseases, including celiac disease, diabetes, and inflammatory skin diseases. In addition to the funding, the awards include expert mentorship and business training to support the eventual commercialization of their research.
“These outstanding Yale faculty are driven to generate impact and develop their research into substantial innovations that will benefit society, and we are thrilled the Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale has the ability to move these projects forward,” said faculty Scientific Director Dr. Joseph Craft, Paul B. Beeson Professor of Medicine (Rheumatology) and Professor of Immunobiology, Yale School of Medicine.
Established in 2019 by a generous gift from philanthropists Judith and Stewart Colton, The Colton Center for Autoimmunity is bridging gaps between research and innovation. Many researchers face a weighty barrier in the journey to commercialization due to a lack of funding for proof-of-concept and validation studies necessary to display commercial potential. These awards will allow promising research to overcome such hurdles.
Makoto Yoshioka, Director of the Colton Center or Autoimmunity on this year’s awardees: “Yale has always been dedicated to the pursuit of innovation and discovery, and the Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale strategically supports Yale researchers in advancing their autoimmunity research findings to a stage at which technology transfer to a commercial partner or start-up company is possible. I look forward to working closely with the awardees to help them achieve their goals.”
This year’s funded projects and lead researchers include:
Development Grant Awardee
- Kevan Herold, C.N.H. Long Professor of Immunobiology and of Medicine (Endocrinology): Creating insulin producing beta cells that resist autoimmune destruction
Pilot Grant Awardees
- Jason Crawford, Professor of Chemistry and of Microbial Pathogenesis: Homo-citrullination as an immunometabolic signaling paradigm
- William Damsky, Assistant Professor of Dermatology and Dermatopathology & Jeffrey Cohen, Assistant Professor of Dermatology; Director, Psoriasis Treatment Program; Director of Safety, Dermatology: Noninvasive skin protein assessment to guide targeted treatment selection in inflammatory skin diseases
- Anna Eisenstein, Assistant Professor of Dermatology: Defining endotypes in hidradenitis suppurativa to improve treatment
- Richard Flavell, Sterling Professor of Immunobiology; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute: Generation and validation of a new humanized mouse model, a surrogate for human celiac disease
- Nikhil Joshi, Associate Professor of Immunobiology: Using genetically engineered models to study pre-autoimmune states
- Marie Robert, Professor of Pathology and of Medicine (Digestive Diseases); Director, Program in Gastrointestinal and Liver Pathology, Pathology & Jordan Pober, Bayer Professor of Translational Medicine and Professor of Immunobiology, Pathology and Dermatology: Developing a molecular microscope for celiac disease
Applications for 2024 will open on September 5, 2023. Sign up for the Yale Ventures Report for more information.
About the Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale
The Colton Center for Autoimmunity at Yale, established by a generous gift from Judith and Stewart Colton, is dedicated to advancing innovative and translational research in autoimmune and allergic diseases. The new center encourages cross-disciplinary, investigator-initiated research, to actively bridge gaps between research and application. It provides strategic support with the goal to advance research findings to a stage at which technology transfer to a commercial partner or start-up company is feasible. Under the direction of Dr. Joseph Craft, the center focuses on nurturing the development of novel diagnostics, therapies, and technology to alleviate autoimmune and allergic disorders, improving lives of patients and families. To learn more, please visit: https://ventures.yale.edu/colton-center-for-autoimmunity.
About Yale Ventures
Launched by Yale University in 2022, Yale Ventures seeks to foster and accelerate a vibrant entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem that increases support, resources, and opportunities for Yale innovators as they translate their ideas and discoveries into new ventures that will positively impact the world's greatest challenges.