DUBAI, 6th December, 2017 (WAM) — Al Jalila Foundation, a global philanthropic organisation dedicated to transforming lives through medical education and research, announced today that it has awarded AED6 million in seed grants to 21 UAE-based medical researchers bringing the total investment to date to AED20 million for 76 research projects.
The seed grants focus on research in the field of cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity and mental health, Al Jalila Foundation’s five research priorities.
The grants were awarded to scientists from medical institutions across the UAE including Mohammed bin Rashid University of Medical Sciences, Dubai Health Authority, UAE University, University of Sharjah, Khalifa University of Science, Technology and Research, and University of Modern Sciences, Dubai. Four Emiratis were also selected to pursue medical research fellowships at renowned international institutions.
H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Al Jalila Foundation, said: “Since inception Al Jalila Foundation has delivered a number of innovative healthcare programmes in education, treatment and research that have benefited people locally – and beyond. Cultivating a cutting-edge environment for medical research in line with our vision to position the UAE at the forefront of medical innovation to improve lives.”
“Al Jalila Foundation Research Centre represents an exciting opportunity to take the next leap forward in medical research. It offers an unrivalled opportunity for the UAE community to come together in our quest to advance scientific knowledge that will help tackle diseases. The promise of this new institute has started building a community of leading scientists that will work together to develop landmark discoveries.”
Dr. Raja Al Gurg, Member of the Board of Trustees of Al Jalila Foundation and Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Al Jalila Foundation, said, “Scientists around the world continue to search for answers into the causes, prevention and treatment of diseases affecting mankind. Our investment in medical research reaffirms our commitment to embed research and innovation in the fabric of the nation’s long-term healthcare strategy. Medical research has the potential to save lives and our efforts today will pave the way for a healthier world for future generations.”
Out of 111 applications submitted for the seed grants, which represents over 100% increase in the number of applications since the inception of the programme, 21 applications were selected following a competitive two-stage review process including international peer review with experts from the world’s most renowned medical institutions, including University of Oxford, King’s College London, University of Glasgow, Harvard Medical School, University of Pennsylvania, Mayo Clinic, University of Toronto, University of McMaster, University of Alberta, University of Lund, and University of Queensland. The reviewers were handpicked as leading experts in their specific field of research, in line with the commitment from Al Jalila Foundation to grow a biomedical research ecosystem in Dubai built on international best practice.
Dr. Abdulkareem Sultan Al Olama, CEO of Al Jalila Foundation, added, “Advances in medical research are critical to the nation’s prosperity and this continues to drive our efforts to attract financial support from professionals, philanthropists and corporates in the UAE. Our mission is to inspire medical advancements that will benefit future generations and support our vision to be at the forefront of global medical innovation. Today’s investments in medical research will go a long way to ensuring better treatment options for future generations.”