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UCSD, La Jolla Immunology Institute Announce Deal

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UC San Diego Health and the School of Medicine made a multi-year partnership with the La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology official Monday, in hopes of boosting basic research of diseases of the immune system and bringing clinical treatments and therapies to market faster.

The affiliation is designed to deepen existing collaborative relationships, according to UC San Diego Health.

"La Jolla Institute's mission has always been to better understand the human immune system and develop new treatments, cures and prevention of diseases ranging from cancer and diabetes to both old and emerging infectious agents, like tuberculosis, dengue virus and SARS," said Mitchell Kronenberg, the institute's president and chief scientific officer. "Working more closely with UC San Diego Health and its renowned faculty in the biological sciences will help get us there faster."

Paul Viviano, CEO of UC San Diego Health, said the healthcare provider and institute have a long history of collaboration.

"Our scientists and physicians work well together. This agreement strengthens those connections, drawing closer LJI with UC San Diego's nationally esteemed programs in the biological sciences," Viviano said. "The result will be new treatments more quickly debuting in our health system, providing patients with the best, most advanced health care possible."

The agreement outlines an expansion of shared research and resources, joint faculty appointments in immunology, pharmacology and/or medicine, and new faculty recruiting efforts. The organizations hope they will be able to speed up the translation of basic research at both institutions into clinical practice at UC San Diego Health.

The institute will remain an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institute governed by its own management and board of directors.

The president of LJI will be appointed an associate dean of Allergy and Immunology at UC San Diego School of Medicine, aiding in planning and strategy for developing research on the campus. The CEO of UC San Diego Health will join the LJI board of directors as an ex officio member, and the dean of UC San Diego School of Medicine will become a member of the LJI Scientific Advisory Board.

UC San Diego Health was chosen over the University of Southern California, according to a San Diego Union-Tribune story. The news comes days after a San Diego Superior Court judge said she'll issue a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit filed by UC San Diego against USC and Dr. Paul Aisen over an Alzheimer's project

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