Melissa R. Miller, PhD
Program Manager Spinal Cord Injury Research Program, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs,
U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command
The Spinal Cord Injury Research Program - Funding Impactful Research for and in Partnership with the SCI Community
The Spinal Cord Injury Research Program (SCIRP) is one of over 30 programs managed by the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) within the U.S. Department of Defense. The SCIRP was established by Congress in 2009 to provide support for traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI)-related research that has the potential to make a significant impact on improving the health and well-being of military Service Members, Veterans, and other individuals living with SCI. Currently, the SCIRP seeks innovative and impactful research that addresses strategic program priorities, including secondary health effects of SCI (e.g., bladder and bowel dysfunction, neuropathic pain); restoration of function, including upper limb function; and psychosocial issues relevant to people with SCI, their families, and/or their care partners. The SCIRP acknowledges the importance of involving people with lived SCI experience in all aspects of research and development and engages people living with SCI throughout our investment planning and review processes. The SCIRP also requires partnership with the community for translational and clinical research funded by the program to ensure that end-users can provide feedback and guidance to maximize the translation and impact potential of proposed research. In short, the SCIRP is a program addressing congressional intent for an SCI research and treatment program that is looking to develop health care solutions for and in partnership with the SCI community.
Dr. Miller currently serves as the Program Manager for the Spinal Cord Injury Research Program, Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command. She previously served as Science Officer for both the Spinal Cord Injury Research Program, as well as the Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program within CDMRP. Dr. Miller attended Seton Hall University where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biochemistry. She holds a Ph.D degree in Cellular and Molecular Medicine from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, received in 2012, where she identified novel small molecule modulators for ion channel targets. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship in physiology examining the role of ion channels in human fertility and reproduction at the University of California, Berkeley.