Campbell Medicine professor awarded $446k grant for research in sepsis

Dr. Hong Zhu, vice chair and professor of physiology and pathophysiology at Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine, has been awarded a $446,625 grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences for research on the development of sepsis. 

“Sepsis is the leading cause of death in intensive care units today,” said Zhu. “It is imperative to develop effective therapies for managing this dreaded disorder.”

The project will investigate the upregulation of endogenous antioxidative/anti-inflammatory networks by naturally derived compounds in multiple organs and determine the therapeutic effects of such upregulation in the development and progression of sepsis in animal models. 

“Though the pathophysiology of sepsis is not completely understood, it is believed that sepsis is the culmination of complex interactions between the offending pathogens and host immune system, leading to dysregulated inflammation, multiple organ failure and eventually death,” said Dr. Zhu.

As the principal investigator for the project, Dr. Zhu has spent nearly a decade with other researchers studying the role of reactive oxygen species and oxidative stress in various disease processes while exploring therapeutic modalities that may prevent the sepsis pathogenesis. Ultimately, the goal of this project is to provide novel insights into the role of antioxidative/anti-inflammatory gene network activation in protecting against multi-organ dysfunction in sepsis.

The funding period will continue until April 30, 2021. The award is a collaborative effort between faculty at Campbell Medicine, the College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center.

This project is supported by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences under cooperative agreement number R15GM124652. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the organization.