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Friday, April 12, 2024

NIH grants $9m to UF center to study small molecules

The Southeast Center for Integrated Metabolomics at UF was recently awarded a five-year, $9 million grant from the National Institutes of Health. Metabolomics is the study of small molecules, called metabolites, that are a byproduct of the metabolic process. They help sustain life by converting energy from food.

Arthur Edison, UF professor of biochemistry and molecular biology and director of the center, said every living organism has metabolites.

“The main reason why UF was picked for this is because we have a lot of expertise in the methodology, the instruments and the techniques of developing new ways to understand metabolites,” said Richard Yost, professor of chemistry and co-director of the center.

One of the studies the center is working on now is using metabolites to discern the differences in cells of people with muscular dystrophy and healthy people.

“You really need to look at the small molecules — the tools of the cell — to really understand how organisms work,” Yost said.

A version of this story ran on page 5 on 9/30/2013 under the headline "Grant gives UF center funds to study life"

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