New cystic fibrosis research clinic on pace to open on Medical Mile

Posted at 9:58 PM, May 12, 2018

HUDSONVILLE, Mich. —  Grand Rapids’ booming Medical Mile will soon add another major research center to its growing arsenal of world-class medical institutions.

On Saturday night, at an event dubbed the Camouflage Ball in the Pinnacle Center in Hudsonville, it was announced that local nonprofit organization Hunt for a Cure is providing a $500,000 lead grant toward a future cystic fibrosis research center  in downtown Grand Rapids in the MSU Grand Rapids Research Center.

Pete Odland, founder, local Hunt for a Cure

The $88.1 million MSU Grand Rapids Research Center opened just last fall at the former site of the Grand Rapids Press building. And sometime later this year, the Cystic Fibrosis Research Center will open its doors there.

At least that’s the game plan, according to Pete Odland, who founded the local Hunt for a Cure in 2001. Odland tells FOX 17 the next step will be to launch an international search and interview process for the research team. He says they’ll soon begin interviewing people in order to find “some of the leading talent in the world” for the future clinic.

“I’m proud of not only our charity, but our community here in West Michigan when they get together and of what they can achieve when they get behind something,” Odland said. “It’s not just the organization, it’s the community and the supporters that make it happen. And we’re excited with the medical powerhouse that Grand Rapids is becoming, and to be part of creating a research center that will affect people with cystic fibrosis around the world.”

Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disorder that causes severe damage to the lungs, digestive system and other body organs.

In addition to the half-million-dollar contribution from Hunt for a Cure, Odland says, donors and other sources have committed $3.1 million for the cystic fibrosis clinic in partnership with Michigan State University and Spectrum Health.