DALLAS, Texas (June 15, 2005) — For the second time this year, a foundation has pledged a significant gift to The University of Texas at Dallas’ Center for BrainHealth to be used exclusively for collaborative research efforts with The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.
The Eugene McDermott Foundation, which is known for its support of education, social services and various civic, cultural and community activities, has pledged $250,000 to the center and designated that the gift be used for joint brain studies with UT Southwestern. The two institutions will investigate such areas as brain plasticity and conduct research about how the brain works and “rewires” itself after treatment. The new gift will bring to more than $700,000 the amount pledged in recent months for joint research by the university’s Center for BrainHealth and the medical center. In March, the Caren and Vin Prothro Foundation announced a $500,000 gift to the center with a similar stipulation.
“We deeply appreciate this generous grant from the Eugene McDermott Foundation,” said Dr. David E. Daniel, who became the fourth president in UTD’s 36–year history on June 1. “I am particularly pleased that, like the Prothro Foundation gift, the funds will be used for collaborative research with one of the preeminent medical centers in the United States — UT Southwestern.”
Daniel added that when two top institutions bring their researchers together to tackle a difficult problem such as finding a cure for a disease, there can be “almost an exponential multiplier effect at work.
“What I mean by that is that the chances for success are far greater. The interdisciplinary synergies that come into play often produce results far beyond what might be expected by simply calculating the sum of the parts,” he said.
Daniel has made it clear that collaboration with UT Southwestern and other institutions will be a hallmark of his administration. As a symbol of that commitment, Daniel made his first official act as UTD president a meeting with Dr. Kern Wildenthal, president of UT Southwestern. The two institutions have collaborated on a growing number of research projects in such areas as sickle cell disease, audiology, molecular imaging and brain and neurological disorders, and Daniel clearly hopes to expand their relationship.
“The Eugene McDermott Foundation realizes the importance of collaborative research, as well as the discoveries that can result from such efforts,” said Cullum Clark, a trustee of the foundation. “The UTD Center for BrainHealth and UT Southwestern are two extraordinary institutions that together can do great things to advance our understanding of how the human brain functions, as well as help better the lives of adults and children affected by brain injury or disease.”
The Eugene McDermott Foundation was established in 1955 by industrialist Eugene McDermott, co-founder of both Texas Instruments and the research institute that in 1969 was turned over to the state and became The University of Texas at Dallas. The foundation is based in Dallas.
The two other founders of the research institute that became UTD — the Graduate Research Center of the Southwest, later renamed the Southwest Center for Advanced Studies — were former Dallas Mayor J. Erik Jonsson and Cecil Green.
About the Center for BrainHealth
The Center for BrainHealth integrates research, treatment, academic training and community outreach and is one of the few facilities in the United States to provide continued follow-up to enhance and monitor functional recovery of children and adults with brain injury, brain disease and complications of normal aging. Through this innovative approach, the center is discovering commonalities across brain maladies that are yielding similarities in brain repair mechanisms and resulting in new treatments for improving life for patients with brain injuries and diseases. One of the center’s top priorities is achieving healthy mental aging by translating scientific findings into treatment. For more information about the center and its work, please visit the organization’s web site www.centerforbrainhealth.org.
The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor®, enrolls more than 14,000 students. The school’s freshman class traditionally stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers a broad assortment of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs. For additional information about UTD, please visit the university’s web site at www.utdallas.edu.
About UT Southwestern
UT Southwestern is one of the nation’s leading medical centers specializing in biomedical research and clinical treatment. UT Southwestern’s faculty includes four Nobel laureates, 15 members of the National Academy of Sciences and 17 members elected to the Institute of Medicine, a national honor reserved for individuals of exceptional distinction and achievement in health sciences research, clinical care and medical education. For additional information about UT Southwestern, please visit the medical center’s web site at www.utsouthwestern.edu.