Announced on December 12, 2017
Dean Ron Jordan of Chapman University School of Pharmacy (CUSP) is pleased to announce that the National Institutes of Health have awarded $1,059,867 to Dr. Miao Zhang for his work in ataxia research. The award will allow Dr. Zhang, an Assistant Professor in ion channel pharmacology at CUSP, to continue his research on SK ion channels for the development of therapeutic agents to treat movement disorders such as ataxia. Spinocerebellar ataxias are genetic, progressive neurological diseases that affect balance and coordination of muscle movement, often as a result of the cerebellar or spinocerebellar neurodegeneration. These disorders are lethal within 10-15 years of the onset of symptoms. Currently, there is no effective treatment or cure for the spinocerebellar ataxias, in large part due to insufficient understanding of the disease pathogenesis. Dr. Zhang’s work is aimed at locating therapies that can protect against the neurodegeneration of ataxia.