This initiative was fostered by researchers in several institutions across the state of Tennessee. Discretionary funding provided by several institutions was instrumental in beginning the discussion, including a Laboratory Directors Research and Development Fund at ORNL and matching funding from Vanderbilt University, University of Tennessee (both Knoxville and Memphis), University of Memphis, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and Meharry Medical College.
After several preliminary meetings, the first full organizational meeting was held at Vanderbilt University in June of 1998. Additional meetings were held to follow up on the large interest that this meeting helped foster across the state. The Memorandum of Cooperation officially beginning this Consortium was signed on Friday, December 4, 1998 at the Conference on the Impact of Emerging Technologies on Health Care in the 21st Century at the Hyatt in Knoxville.
The focus of the consortium is to become recognized and funded as a center for functional genomics and for developing mouse models of human genetic diseases.
The first scientific application from the TMGC was titled "TARGETED MUTAGENESIS OF MOUSE GENOME AND NEURAL PHENOTYPES" and submitted to the National Institutes of Health is response to RFA MH-99-007. This project was funded with Daniel Goldowitz as the principal investigator.
The involvement of the current member institutions will greatly augment our ability to identify both obvious and subtle whole-organism changes that result when mouse genes undergo mutation. Each institution can play a crucial role in screening the mutagenized mice for induced changes in diverse areas of behavior, physiology, development, biochemistry, and morphology.
The consortium is continuing to take advantage of expertise in mouse genetics, bioinformatics, basic biomedical research, and clinical research expertise across the state. It will be interested in discussions with researchers in the TMGC member institutions on submitting new grants as part of the consortium (please contact the TMGC administrators for more information about how to submit an TMGC grant).
Among the factors that have differentiated this Consortium from other efforts include the following: