BETHESDA, Md., March 13, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) Research Foundation is pleased to welcome Salix Pharmaceuticals as a supporter of the foundation's endowment. The AGA Research Foundation provides research funding grants to young investigators in gastroenterology and hepatology. The foundation's grants transform young researchers' lives by encouraging them to embark on and continue careers in research. Many ultimately make discoveries that improve patient care. Salix Pharmaceuticals is a specialty pharmaceutical company committed to the prevention and treatment of gastrointestinal (GI) disorders. "AGA is committed to helping young scientists investigate the GI and liver diseases that plague millions of people. AGA-funded researchers hold the keys to the patient care advances of tomorrow. AGA is thrilled that Salix recognizes the importance of supporting discovery and has made a significant commitment to the AGA Research Foundation for years to come," said Nicholas F. LaRusso, MD, AGAF, chair of the AGA Research Foundation. Salix Pharmaceuticals' $1.125 million, five-year commitment to the AGA Research Foundation endowment will help ensure that researchers have the tools they need to discover ways to better diagnose, treat and cure digestive diseases. "Salix is passionate about providing solutions to address unmet treatment needs for people with GI disorders," said Carolyn Logan, president and chief executive officer, Salix Pharmaceuticals. "We are pleased to support the AGA Research Foundation in its mission of the advancement of gastroenterological and hepatological research." Many breakthroughs have been achieved through gastroenterological and hepatological research over the past century, forming the basis of the modern medical practice. The AGA Research Foundation is working to continue this tradition of discovery and ultimately improve the lives of patients with digestive diseases through the researchers it funds. Salix's support of the AGA Research Foundation's mission is a critical investment in the future of the field of gastroenterology.