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Funding Opportunities

Lysosomal Biomarkers Program


This program seeks to develop, optimize and validate biomarkers related to lysosomal function, protein clearance and lipid homeostasis.

Funding will support projects that will:  

  • Develop, optimize or validate molecular bioassays such as mass spectrometry or immunoassay approaches for autophagy or lysosomal analytes 

  • Investigate imaging approaches in brain or other areas  

  • Measure functional endpoints, dynamic measures, in vivo activity or lysosomal flux  

  • Analyze existing datasets (including PD model data) to identify molecular measures of lysosomal function in normal and disease states towards identification of patient enrichment markers for lysosomal targeted therapies 

  • Support lysosomal targeted therapies (ex. TMEM175, TRPML1, GBA, etc.) and those geared towards quantification of lysosomal dysfunction or lysosomal dysfunction states more broadly. 

MJFF will consider applications spanning all stages of the biomarker pipeline, including development, optimization and validation. Applicants are encouraged to get creative and think outside the box when considering how to address challenges surrounding measurements of this pathway.  

For this round, MJFF will prioritize proposals that:  

  • Have potential to directly inform ongoing or upcoming clinical trials 

  • Directly inform precision medicine approaches for patient selection & stratification 

  • Include clear indication of how the proposed biomarker will be used to inform PD diagnosis, prognosis, monitoring, prediction, susceptibility, and/or pharmacodynamic response 

Clear translational value and path to the use of the assay in the clinic should be described if fibroblasts or iPSCs are used. 

Due to the lack of available antibodies to measure many relevant analytes, antibody generation may be considered with relevant justification for why new development is necessary for the proposed assay work. Proposed novel antibody generation to support assay development should consider long term access for relevant assay work such as the use of monoclonals, path to commercialization & scalability, any IP considerations and etc. Working with MJFF to deposit the resulting antibody in an MJFF-designated repository for community access is a requirement of the program.  

For this round, MJFF will not consider:  

  • Non-lysosomal associated biomarkers 

  • New unbiased discovery data generation efforts which may identify lysosomal targets  

  • Basic biology projects to better understand lysosomal pathway/dysfunction without a clear link to translatable biomarkers 

Industry and academic researchers in and outside the United States are welcome to apply.    

Watch a video on this funding program that covers our application and review processes. 

Email with questions.  

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