Young MS Researchers Invited to Apply for Marilyn Hilton Award

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by Patricia Silva, PhD |

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Marilyn and Barron Hilton

Marilyn and Barron Hilton (Courtesy of Conrad N. Hilton Foundation)

The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation announced that nominations are now being accepted for the Marilyn Hilton Award for Innovation in Multiple Sclerosis Research. The award aims to stimulate new and potentially groundbreaking research into progressive multiple sclerosis (MS),  and the Foundation expects to distribute to $4 million in grants over five years, supporting the work of young scholars and investigators.

Aware of the difficulties young scientists face in finding financial support for their projects, especially in times of financial constraint, and recognizing the importance of a healthy research environment, the Foundation created the Marilyn Hilton grant, among others.

The grant is named to honor the mother of the current Hilton Foundation chairman, Steven Hilton, who lived with multiple sclerosis for decades. Hilton said his mother’s philosophy in a  press release: “You don’t look back at what might have been. You accept what life has presented and make the best of what you have.”

Proposals for two distinct grants are sought by the Foundation: Bridging Grants for Physician Scientists awards will support young researchers as they transition from their post-doctoral projects to first faculty positions, and the Pilot Innovator Grants are short-term awards for young scholars so they can explore new lines of research.

“MS has touched the lives of the Hilton family at a very personal level, so we feel it’s important to reach out and help others that are going through a similar struggle. Those with MS and those who love them will benefit from this innovative research,” said Peter Laugharn, president and chief executive officer of the Foundation.

For more information about the award, competition guidelines, and individuals and institutions eligible to apply for funding, please visit the Foundation’s Marilyn Hilton Award website or contact Elizabeth Cheung.

Winners will be selected by Scientific Advisory Committee composed of experts in the field of MS.

The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, was created in 1944 by Conrad N. Hilton, the founder of Hilton Hotels, is a philanthropy organization working in a number of priority areas in addition to multiple sclerosis research. These include making safe water available, ending chronic homelessness, preventing substance use, helping HIV- and AIDS-affected children, supporting transition-age youth in foster care, and working with the Catholic Sisters.

Since its inception, the Foundation has awarded over $1.4 billion in grants.

It is estimated that over 400,000 people in the United States have MS, and the disease is the leading cause of neurological disability in young adults. Currently, neither primary progressive MS nor secondary progressive MS have approved treatments.

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