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Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America Release: Expanding IBD Research Through Collaboration

8/20/2014 8:03:34 AM

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NEW YORK, Aug. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) announces an agreement with Pfizer Inc.'s Centers for Therapeutic Innovation (CTI) to identify and support the potential development and translation of research in the area of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Capitalizing on CCFA's expertise in the field of IBD research and CTI's network of academic medical centers, the organizations will collaborate to drive promising translational research projects toward the clinic. The collaboration will initially involve the co-funding of research projects that focus on studying validated targets in Crohn's Disease and ulcerative colitis, which are the two most common types of IBD. This alliance represents CCFA's first-ever joint funding agreement with a pharmaceutical company.

"We are pleased to have this opportunity to collaborate with CTI to help identify and advance potential new treatments and therapies for people with IBD," says Caren Heller, MD, MBA, and CCFA's Chief Scientific Officer. "CCFA is dedicated to delivering tangible improvements in the treatment of IBD and helping create better outcomes for patients. By harnessing resources and expertise from both of our organizations, we aim to speed the development of better treatments for millions of patients with IBD."

The collaboration represents a step in the evolution of the R&D ecosystem in which industry works in close partnership with academia and charitable health organizations, among others. Under the terms of the collaboration, CCFA and CTI will co-fund up to four jointly-selected, small-molecule projects over the next two years. 

"CTI's work is based on authentic collaboration, reflected in shared decision making and aligned incentives, in an effort to bring together some of the world's best resources to develop medicines faster," says Dr. Anthony J. Coyle, Chief Scientific Officer at Pfizer Inc.'s CTI. "Combining CTI's scientific resources with CCFA's deep knowledge of IBD and network of investigators, we aim to be well-positioned to pursue more targeted medicines for IBD patients."

Since its founding, CCFA has invested more than $200 million in research, and progress is moving faster than ever before. In the past five years, researchers have made significant inroads in the study of genetics, as well as the gut microbiome. CCFA is dedicated to advancing research for both adults and pediatrics, and this year alone the Foundation will invest over $21 million and fund investigators in the U.S., Canada and over a dozen foreign countries.

About CCFA

The Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) is the largest voluntary non-profit health organization dedicated to finding cures for Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD). CCFA's mission is to cure Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, and to improve the quality of life of children and adults who suffer from these diseases. The Foundation works to fulfill its mission by funding research, providing educational resources for patients and their families, medical professionals, and the public, and furnishing supportive services for those afflicted with IBD. CCFA has funded more than $200 million in research.  For more information, visit, call 888-694-8872 or email at

SOURCE Crohn's & Colitis Foundation of America

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