The National Institutes of Health  awarded Dr. Muhammad Saad Yousuf $3,143,587 for his research on Targeting Methylglyoxal-induced Diabetic Neuropathic Pain via the Integrated Stress Response. The aim of this project is to promote the development of non-opioid therapies targeting the integrated stress response (ISR), such as an integrated stress response inhibitor (ISRIB). This aim is significant given that it has been established that over 10% of Americans have diabetes, 35% are at imminent risk of developing the disease, and half of those with diabetes will experience chronic pain that is poorly treated with current medications. Additionally, there is still more research needed to determine the cause of chronic diabetic neuropathic pain, which is a major contributing factor in diabetic individuals.

This research will create a unique chance to clinically model medicines with a distinct biomarker that can be used to identify patients and track drug efficacy by performing three studies utilizing rodent and human models. Dr. Muhammad Saad Yousuf of the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences and researchers from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso (TTUHSCEP) will work together to conduct this neuroscience-related study.