Dysautonomia Foundation, Inc

Research Grant Program

The Dysautonomia Foundation is proud to support research into Familial Dysautonomia by awarding research grants for outstanding proposals to eminent scientists from throughout the world.  Please click here for more information about the research projects that we currently fund. 



Dysautonomia Foundation Inc.

Familial Dysautonomia (FD) is an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by altered intrauterine development of the autonomic and sensory nervous system. The disorder is progressive and neuronal survival also may be compromised.

Patients with FD have trouble swallowing liquids, do not produce overflow tears, and become hypotensive when they stand. They are relatively insensitive to pain and experience dramatic fluctuations in blood pressure and body temperature. They suffer episodic autonomic crises of vomiting, retching, and extremely high blood pressure.

Mutations in the IKAP gene were recently shown to cause FD. In over 95% of patients, a single intronic base substitution that affects the splicing of the IKAP transcript was identified [Am. J. Hum. Genet. 68: 598-605 and 753-758, 2001]. This splicing alteration is tissue (i.e., neuron) specific. A point mutation in the coding region has also been identified. The IKAP protein has recently been shown to be a component of the transcription Elongator complex and also to interact with jun kinase (JNK). The molecular/cellular mechanisms causing FD are not understood, however invertebrate knockouts have been lethal.

The Dysautonomia Foundation is accepting applications for research grants dealing with molecular, biochemical, cellular and clinical pathologic studies relevant to function of the gene or to the pathophysiology of FD. Development of an appropriate animal model, and studies leading to novel therapeutic strategies for FD are also encouraged.

Application Procedure

Grants will be made by the Dysautonomia Foundation for a two year period for up to $100,000/year.  Support of a postdoctoral fellow will also be considered. Grants will be renewable depending on productivity. Funded researchers will be expected to freely share reagents developed from these research grants with other Dysautonomia Foundation funded investigators and to attend an annual meeting to present and discuss their results.

Please submit a five page proposal (not including figures or references) detailing the proposed project along with the CVs of the Principal and Co-Investigators to the:

Dysautonomia Foundation Inc.
Third Avenue , 12th Floor, New York , NY 10017-6706

Fax: (212) 682-7625
E-mail: info@familialdysautonomia.org

Further information on FD is on the web site. The application must be submitted by either email, post, or fax on or before November 30, 2004 . The awards will be announced on January 30, 2005 . For additional information, please contact the Dysautonomia Foundation at (tel): 212-949-6644, (fax): 212-682-7625 or (email): info@familialdysautonomia.org.  



Copyright (c) 2004 Dysautonomia Foundation, Inc.                                Last modified 10/15/04