PHILADELPHIA — Stephen E. Kimmel, MD, MSCE, professor of Medicine and Epidemiology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, has received a $1.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health’s National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) to help find new approaches to implement genomic findings into clinical practice.

Four grants totaling more than $12.8 million for four years were awarded to Penn Medicine, Mount Sinai, Duke University and University of Florida, as part of the NHGRI’s Genomic Medicine Pilot Demonstration Projects (GMPDP) program.

Most see genomics as the key to major advances in disease diagnostics, treatment and prevention. But for many, how to best use this information in a healthcare setting remains challenging. The GMPDP program is designed to address such challenges and help find solutions.

Penn Medicine will serve as the Coordinating Center to ensure that the various institutions collaborate, share data and insights, and, in the end, come up with more generalizable results that can be used in a wider application.

“A collaborative, strategic, and rigorous approach to addressing the barriers and applying solutions to genomic implementation is required to maximize its public health impact,” said Dr. Kimmel. “We'll work together with each of the centers, and collect information that the sites need to answer larger questions about this implementation and help establish a framework that can apply to the use of genomics more broadly.”

The coordinating center team will also pay special attention to the developing ethical, social and legal implications of implementing genomics into medicine and patient care.

“Groups around the country have begun to explore the use of genomic medicine, and many have been studying new ways to take genomic results and implement them into electronic medical records and clinical care,” said Heather Junkins, NHGRI health science analyst. “We're still learning the best ways to do this and putting together a funded consortium of investigators allows people to network, develop best practices and disseminate information.”

The four-year awards total $2.6 million in the first year, and if funding remains available, approximately $12.8 million overall. Dr. Kimmel’s grant (HG007266) is for $1.6 million for four years.

For more information on this pilot program, please read the full feature story on

Penn Medicine is one of the world's leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania (founded in 1765 as the nation's first medical school) and the University of Pennsylvania Health System, which together form a $5.3 billion enterprise.

The Perelman School of Medicine has been ranked among the top five medical schools in the United States for the past 18 years, according to U.S. News & World Report's survey of research-oriented medical schools. The School is consistently among the nation's top recipients of funding from the National Institutes of Health, with $373 million awarded in the 2015 fiscal year.

The University of Pennsylvania Health System's patient care facilities include: The Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Presbyterian Medical Center -- which are recognized as one of the nation's top "Honor Roll" hospitals by U.S. News & World Report -- Chester County Hospital; Lancaster General Health; Penn Wissahickon Hospice; and Pennsylvania Hospital -- the nation's first hospital, founded in 1751. Additional affiliated inpatient care facilities and services throughout the Philadelphia region include Chestnut Hill Hospital and Good Shepherd Penn Partners, a partnership between Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Network and Penn Medicine.

Penn Medicine is committed to improving lives and health through a variety of community-based programs and activities. In fiscal year 2015, Penn Medicine provided $253.3 million to benefit our community.

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