University of Pittsburgh

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A team of Pitt scientists is developing a drug that could heal people who’ve been affected by too much radiation. This past fall, the team received a $2.7 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority to conduct clinical trials of the drug, named JP4-039. “Currently, no drugs on the market counteract the effects of radiation exposure,” says Joel Greenberger, the lead researcher and professor and chair in the Department of Radiation Oncology in the Pitt School of Medicine. So far, JP4-039 has shown that it enhances cell recovery in mice and human tissue if it’s delivered within 24 hours after radiation exposure.