Salk Institute for Biological Studies

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla, California is one of the world's foremost independent non-profit institutions conducting basic science research dedicated to the improvement of human health. The Institute was founded in 1960 by Jonas Salk, M.D., with a gift of land from the City of San Diego and the financial support of the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation.

The Salk Institute's two major areas of focus are molecular biology and genetics, and the neurosciences; the Institute has been ranked number one worldwide in both of these areas by the Philadelphia-based Institute for Scientific Information.

Salk Institute scientists are striving to discover the origins of such diseases and conditions as cancer, AIDS, Alzheimer's disease, cardiovascular disorders, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, anomolies of the brain and central nervous system, and birth defects. In addition, studies in plant biology are aimed at improving the quantity and quality of the world's food supply.

For more information, or to contact Salk Institute for Biological Studies, see their website at:

» Recent News

Zeroing in on Stress Receptors Could Lead to Treatment of Heart Failure
10 Mar 04 | A hormone that helps the body adapt to stress may provide a key to designing treatments for congestive heart failure, according to a study by researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and the U.C. San Diego School of Medicine.

Hunter Receives Two Major Cancer Awards
02 Mar 04 | Tony Hunter, professor of molecular and cell biology at the Salk Institute, has received two major awards for cancer research.

It's the Dosage: Salk Study Shows How Drugs of Abuse Work
25 Feb 04 | Researchers at the Salk Institute and the University of Geneva have discovered a novel mechanism to explain how the drug of abuse GHB affects the human nervous system. GHB is also known as the "date rape" drug.

Stem Cell Regulator Could Hold Key to Staving Off Age-related Brain Changes
30 Jan 04 | A brain-specific genetic switch protein known as a receptor has been found to control the fate of adult stem cells in the brain, according to a Salk Institute study.

Salk Study Uncovers New Information About Organ Placement
08 Jan 04 | A Salk Institute team of biologists, mathematicians, and physicists has uncovered a novel paradigm for cell communication that provides new insights into the complex question of how the body determines where organs are placed.

Waves of Nerve Cell Activity Create Sharp Vision in the Brain
18 Dec 03 | Nerve cells firing in spontaneous waves create the brain's first sharp visual images during a short but critical phase of development, researchers have found. The study may lead to ways to better treat nerve cell injury and diseases like Parkinson's.

Salk Institute Receives $7 Million Gift to Establish Neuroscience Center
17 Dec 03 | The goal of the center will be to help Salk scientists organize the wealth of information that is now available about the genes and proteins that regulate nerve cell activity as well as the networks of nerve cells that regulate brain function.

Salk Researcher named to Institute of Medicine
10 Dec 03 | Evans was one of 65 leaders in these fields named a member of the IOM. Members are expected to serve on institute committees and help prepare reports that guide the U.S. government on health and science issues.

Salk Institute Receives Record $30 Million Gift
18 Nov 03 | An anonymous donor has made a $30 million donation to the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, providing the largest single gift in the history of the Institute.

Cell Division Findings Detail Genetic Links to Cancer
16 Nov 03 | Salk Institute scientists have for the first time linked the function of a group of proteins required for DNA duplication and accurate chromosome movement during cell division. The findings may help explain the genetic influences behind some cancers.

Molecular first steps to adult diabetes found
12 Nov 03 | The study, published in the Nov. 13 issue of Nature, for the first time identifies the molecular switches that decide whether the liver stores or burns fat. Knowledge of these switches may provide a new avenue for treating adult-onset diabetes.

Gene Chip Study Could Lead to New Hybrid Plants
31 Oct 03 | A study led by the Salk Institute and U.C. Berkeley has found new methods to identify functional genes in the common mustard weed Arabidopsis. This technology may lead to new ways to modify plants to grow faster, produce more food and resist disease.

Cellular Fat Sensor Slows Heart Disease
15 Oct 03 | A cellular sensor of dietary fats slows the development of lesions that lead to heart disease, a Salk Institute study has found. The study uncovers a unique pathway that significantly curbs the development of atherosclerosis.

Salk Researchers Ranked in Top 25 of Scientific Citations Worldwide
29 Sep 03 | Two Salk Institute researchers ranked within the top 25 scientists worldwide for their work's influence in any field, according to an organization that monitors the impact of scientific publications.

Salk Researcher Provides New View on How the Brain Functions
25 Sep 03 | Scientists are developing a new paradigm for how the brain functions. They propose that the brain is not a huge fixed network, as had been previously thought, but a dynamic, changing network that adapts continuously to meet demands.

Are There "Social Behavior" Genes?
20 Aug 03 | The study zeros in on the genes that may lead to the marked extroverted behavior seen in children with Williams syndrome, demonstrating that "hyper-sociability" - especially the drive to interact with strangers - follows a unique developmental path.

Gene Therapy Postpones Lou Gehrig's Disease Symptoms
07 Aug 03 | A unique gene therapy method postpones the symptoms and nearly doubles the life span in a mouse animal model of Lou Gehrig's disease, a research team led by the Salk Institute has found. The findings are the first to show this degree of recovery.

Missing Enzyme Found to Lead to Alzheimer’s Disease Symptoms
31 Jul 03 | An enzyme studied by scientists for years can prevent tangles of proteins from forming in the brain's nerve cells - as occurs in patients with age-dependent Alzheimer's disease, according to a study by investigators.

Salk Study Advances Understanding of Plant Genes and Their Function
31 Jul 03 | A Salk Institute study provides significant new information in the process of allowing scientists to understand the function of plant genes. The study is published in the August 1 issue of Science.

Leila Josefowicz to Perform at Symphony at Salk
18 Jul 03 | Symphony At Salk: A Concert Under The Stars. The eighth annual Symphony at Salk, a benefit for the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, will be held Saturday, Aug. 23, under the stars on the institute's Gildred Court.

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