OpenBiome Researcher Wins CureAccelerator Live! for the Developing World

Clinical Trial for Severe Acute Malnutrition Receives Funding to Repurpose Existing Fecal Microbiota Transplantation Treatment
K Allikmets & C Reddick, Takeda; Osman, OpenBiome; C Thibodeaux & B Goodman, CWR
K Allikmets & C Reddick, Takeda; Osman, OpenBiome; C Thibodeaux & B Goodman, CWR
CHICAGO - May 28, 2019 - PRLog -- On Thursday, May 23, Majdi Osman, MD, MPH representing OpenBiome won Cures Within Reach's CureAccelerator Live! for the Developing World philanthropic pitch event. Cures Within Reach is a leading global nonprofit focused on improving patient quality and length of life by leveraging the speed, safety and cost-effectiveness of medical repurposing research. CureAccelerator Live! brings together stakeholders from pharma, biotech, academia, medicine, philanthropy and patient groups to showcase repurposing clinical trials in need of funding.  This CureAccelerator Live! event focused on clinical trials that use repurposed therapies to treat an unmet medical need impacting patients in low and lower-middle income countries. Held in collaboration with Harvard School of Medicine's Global Health Catalyst Summit, attendees voted for the winning repurposing clinical trial.

"All the finalists have fascinating clinical repurposing projects to impact patients in low and lower-middle income countries.  All of them deserve to be funded, and we are thrilled to start with funding Dr. Osman of OpenBiome," said Barbara Goodman, President & COO of Cures Within Reach.

Attendees heard from five clinician-researchers representing academic medical centers from four US states and from India. Dr. Osman's project, "The THRIVE Study: Repurposing Fecal Microbiota Transplantation For the Treatment of Severe Acute Malnutrition in South Africa" will study the use of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) in children with severe acute malnutrition who are unresponsive to standard therapy. This project is the first to explore broad-spectrum microbiome interventions for the treatment of severe acute malnutrition.  Globally, approximately 19 million children under the age of five are affected by severe acute malnutrition annually. OpenBiome ( and Dr. Osman will receive up to $50,000 in funding from Cures Within Reach to support this research.  Read more at:

"Manipulating the gut microbiome holds great promise for improving outcomes in severe acute malnutrition and repurposing FMT could expand the treatment options for these children," said CureAccelerator Live! winner Dr. Osman, Clinical Program Director and Director of Global Health at OpenBiome. "We are honored to receive this award and are immensely grateful to Cures Within Reach and its supporters for funding our work, and that of other researchers seeking to transform health outcomes in low and lower-middle income countries through urgently needed clinical research."

The other finalists who presented their repurposing projects at CureAccelerator Live! included:

- Aileen Chang, MD from George Washington University presenting Repurposing a Flu Treatment For Severe Dengue Patients in Colombia
- Daniel Kalman, PhD from Emory University presenting Repurposing a Generic Cancer Drug For Tuberculosis in South Africa
- Rajiv Mehta, MBBS, MD, DNB from SIDS Hospital & Research Centre presenting Repurposing a Statin With a Nutraceutical For Chronic Pancreatitis Patients in India
- Indira Mysorekar, PhD from Washington University School of Medicine presenting Repurposing an Anti-Malarial to Treat Zika Virus Infections in Pregnant Women in India

Expert Panelists representing pharma, clinicians and academia helped attendees make a more informed voting decision, and included representatives from:
- Gates Medical Research Institute
- Harvard's Global Health Catalyst Summit
- Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital
- Takeda Pharmaceuticals

Cures Within Reach is grateful for industry support from Takeda Pharmaceuticals and philanthropic support from the Judy Hirsch Foundation for this CureAccelerator Live! event.

For more information about CureAccelerator Live!, please visit

About Cures Within Reach
Cures Within Reach (CWR) is a US-based global philanthropic leader that improves patient quality and length of life by leveraging the speed, safety and cost-effectiveness of medical repurposing research, driving more treatments to more patients more quickly. CWR catalyzes research to facilitate and validate repurposing opportunities that create clinical impact, and enables and facilitates conversation and action among stakeholders that help transform healthcare through repurposing opportunities. Through repurposing, CWR drives both market impact and health savings to patients and patient groups, from academia/researchers, with payers and the healthcare industry and with support from the government, philanthropy and others. CWR's repurposing research projects have generated "new" treatments in over a dozen indications, making patient impact through off-label use in clinical practice or through a commercialization track.

CWR currently has a global portfolio of 22 repurposing research projects in 17 diseases at 17 institutions, as well as more than 200 repurposing research projects available for funding in a wide range of diseases on its CureAccelerator® site. Visit or follow CWR via Twitter @CuresWReach, LinkedIn (, YouTube ( or Facebook (

Clare Thibodeaux
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