MDI Biological Laboratory
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Breaking Through: Creating a Center of Biomedical Research Excellence

Dear Friends,

We are pleased to share this special issue of Breaking Through in recognition of all that the Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) federal research program has made possible at the MDI Biological Laboratory over the last decade. 

The following pages highlight the many ways the COBRE program has helped MDIBL evolve from a largely seasonal operation into an international hub of research on aging, regeneration and tissue repair. 

Administered by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, since 2013 the COBRE grants helped bring nine outstanding young faculty on board, six of whom have gone on to win their first independent research grants. 

We also secured state-of-the-art microscopy, bioinformatics services and significantly expanded the Laboratory’s cohort of transgenic animal models to support our faculty and visiting scientists. In short, the COBRE program has been a driving force in MDIBL’s growth, placing us on a new trajectory — a scientific journey into the mysteries of aging and regeneration. 

And we cannot overstate the importance of philanthropy in setting the stage for this transformation. Visionary donors such as Kathryn W. Davis and Wistar and Martha Morris imagined a future for the Laboratory that few others could, and they invested in it. We are inspired by their belief in us and their unwavering commitment to creating a world where each of us can live longer, healthier lives. 

We are also thankful to Kevin Strange, Ph.D., for establishing a clear research vision for the COBRE and setting MDIBL on a course for success. 

We could not be prouder of all that this program has allowed us to accomplish and for the vibrant scientific community it has fostered. And we could not be more grateful to each of you for your continued support and commitment to our future success. 

With appreciation,
Hermann Haller, M.D., President
Iain Drummond, Ph.D., Scientific Director


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