Pfizer offers grants for PCSK9 research

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Pfizer is looking for outside research on PCSK9 inhibitors, a hyped new class of cholesterol-lowering treatments. 

The drugmaker on Thursday announced a competitive grants program that will support research projects that investigate the role of PCSK9s in cardiovascular disease.

Pfizer's own PCSK9 treatment, bococizumab, is currently in a Phase-III trial—which began in October 2013. Amgen and Sanofi are expected to receive FDA approval for their PCSK9 drugs sometime later this year.

The grant program is part of a larger Pfizer initiative called Aspire (Advancing Science through Pfizer Investigator Research Exchange). Aspire's cardiovascular program will fund multiple grants of up to $100,000 to support new research.

Grantees will be chosen through an application process by an independent review committee. The committee recommends applications in specific research areas, such as the role of PCSK9 in lipoprotein metabolism, PCSK9 and the immune system, PCSK9 and infectious disease as well as programs that “identify the unmet needs and/or residual risk in high risk secondary/primary prevention patients that may be addressed by PCSK9 inhibitors.” The application period ends May 28.

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