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December 4, 2008

SIU Med School Receives NIH Grant to Study Fatigue

A research scientist at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine in Springfield has been awarded a five-year federal grant from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The grant is for the study of the mechanisms of fatigue in chronic viral disease and has a total budget of $1,903,550.

Linda A. Toth, Ph.D., D.V.M., professor of pharmacology and associate dean for research and faculty affairs at SIU School of Medicine, is the principal investigator for the project.

Viral infections in conditions such as Epstein-Barr virus, mononucleosis and viral hepatitis are known to cause fatigue and sleep disturbances.  Toth is developing a model system for studying the causes of fatigue in mice.  Her research may lead to treatments which will prevent or alleviate fatigue associated with viral infections in humans.

Toth’s research has been funded for 18 years by NIH and now totals $7.8 million.  Her research has focused on how diseases cause fatigue and problems with sleep and the genes that cause individual variations of sleep.

Toth joined the SIU faculty in 1999.  She earned her veterinary medicine degree at Purdue University (1986), her doctoral and master’s degrees at the University of Pittsburgh (1980, 1975) and her bachelor’s degree at Duquesne University (1972).

SIU School of Medicine’s mission is to assist the people of central and southern Illinois in meeting their health care needs through education, patient care, research and community service.  SIU’s research efforts cover a wide range of basic and clinical sciences.  Currently more than 230 research projects funded by outside organizations, primarily federal agencies, are underway in 100-plus laboratories.  For information, call SIU’s main number, 217-545-8000, or log on to the School’s Web site at www.siumed.edu.

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thern Illinois University School of Medicine Office of Public Affairs News Releases P.O. Box 19621, Springfield IL 62794-9621, 217-545-2155