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April 8, 2010 | last updated December 1, 2011 5:34 am

Grant to fund jobs at MDI biolab

Thanks to a $1.6 million grant from the Department of Defense, the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory plans to expand its research on limb regeneration and add up to 50 new positions.

The DoD grant will allow the lab's Center for Regenerative Biology and Medicine to continue research on why humans lost the ability to regenerate limbs and how it can be regained, according to a press release. Director Dr. Kevin Strange said the funding will support 8-10 positions at the lab this year, and 50 positions over the next five. Lab research has shown that regeneration was once the norm for vertebrates, such skates, which share 95% of its genes with humans and which will serve as a model for the lab's limb regeneration studies.

Rep. Mike Michaud, along with Sens. Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, worked to ensure the 2010 Department of Defense Appropriation Act included funding for the biolab.

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