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The Houston Endowment Inc.: Investing in Bioinformatics

The Houston Endowment has committed $2.5 million to help recruit an outstanding leader in bioinformatics for the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital.

Why Bioinformatics Matters

Bioinformatics. Many people's eyes glaze over before they even reach the sixth and final syllable of the word. Ask them what it means, and they're likely to smile and shrug their shoulders. Fortunately, there are people like Dr. Huda Zoghbi, Director of the Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute at Texas Children's Hospital, and community organizations, like Houston Endowment Inc., who know not only what bioinformatics means, but also just how important it is in the world of medical research.

Bioinformatics involves the application of mathematics, informatics, computer science, chemistry, and biochemistry to solve biological problems — usually on the molecular level.

Bringing New Insight to Discovery

"A mathematician or computer scientist may see things in a protein network, for example, that a medical scientist won't see," explained Zoghbi. "The generosity of Houston Endowment will ensure that we have the resources and the most cutting-edge tools at our disposal to store, organize, and analyze massive amounts of data."

"Texas Children's has always been committed to bringing together the right group of people to solve problems," said Larry Faulkner, president of Houston Endowment Inc. "The Jan and Dan Duncan Neurological Research Institute is a real manifestation of that commitment. It is gratifying to know that the institute is dedicated to fostering the kind of collaboration among different disciplines that can advance neurological research quickly and efficiently. Houston Endowment is proud to be able to play a part in something that truly can improve peoples' lives."

"The key ingredient to the success of the institute — to our ability to help heal sick children — is fruitful interactions, and these interactions will happen when we have specialists in all these areas working together in the same place," added Zoghbi.

This is exactly what the gift from Houston Endowment is making possible.

The Houston Endowment's Vision

Founded in 1937 by Jesse and Mary Gibbs Jones, Houston Endowment was created to "help establish and develop institutions and organizations that would nurture Houston's people and encourage the city's growth."

Each year, Houston Endowment invests approximately $70 million in the Houston community, including Texas Children's Hospital, to help fulfill the Joneses' vision.

Inspired by the Houston Endowment's generosity? Make a donation now