Research Tracks http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks A publication of the Office of the Vice Provost for Research at Baylor University Wed, 23 Apr 2014 14:00:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://blogs.baylor.edu/?v=3.8.3 Reminder: BRIC Foundations lecture tomorrow with Nick Farah of L-3 Communications http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/23/reminder-bric-foundations-lecture-tomorrow-with-nick-farah-of-l-3-communications/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/23/reminder-bric-foundations-lecture-tomorrow-with-nick-farah-of-l-3-communications/#comments Wed, 23 Apr 2014 14:00:22 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2245 Continue reading ]]> bric_foundations-logo-web-600x200

As a reminder, tomorrow’s BRIC Foundations lecture will take place at the Baylor Sciences Building (BSB), and NOT at the BRIC.  The BSB is located at 101 Bagby Avenue in Waco.  


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The Office of the Vice Provost for Research is proud to present Mr. Nick Farah, the president of the Platform Systems Sector in L-3 Communications’ Integrated Systems Group, for the second event in the BRIC Foundations Lecture Series.

Public Lecture

The Importance of Strong Collaborative Research Bonds Between Industry and Higher Education

Abstract and details for Mr. Farah's lecture.

Abstract and details for Mr. Farah’s lecture.

Thursday, April 24, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Baylor Sciences Building, room B-110
Prior to the lecture, join us for a reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the BSB’s A2 elevator landing.

For more than a quarter-century, Farah has served L-3 Communications in a variety of high-level technical and executive capacities. His presentation will include both strategic and practical perspectives on the aerospace industry, which has become an economic mainstay of the Central Texas region. Long an advocate of partnering with technical vocational and higher educational institutions, he has overseen the establishment of collaborative projects that take full advantage of the many resources available from Texas State Technical College, McLennan Community College and Baylor University. Currently, L-3 Communications has 20 aerospace engineers in the BRIC to support ongoing collaborative projects with Baylor researchers.

About L-3 Communications

Headquartered in New York City, L-3 Communications is a Fortune 200 company employing approximately 48,000 people worldwide and is a prime contractor in Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance systems (C3ISR), platform and logistics solutions, and national security solutions. L-3 Communications is also a leading provider of a broad range of electronic systems used on military and commercial platforms. The company reported 2013 sales of $12.6 billion.

About BRIC Foundations

BRIC Foundations: Perspectives from Leaders in Innovation is an international speaker series featuring top experts in the fields of science, engineering, business, industry and workforce development. The series is intended to leverage the connections and resources of the BRIC to provide learning opportunities to Baylor faculty and students as well as the Central Texas community.

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NSF increases minimum award size for engineering CAREER program http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/22/nsf-increases-minimum-award-size-for-engineering-career-program/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/22/nsf-increases-minimum-award-size-for-engineering-career-program/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 17:10:14 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2232 Continue reading ]]> NSF LogoThe National Science Foundation has announced an increase in the minimum amount of awards made by the Directorate of Engineering under the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program.

According to a Dear Colleague Letter released this morning, the minimum five-year CAREER award size will be $500,000 beginning with the FY 2015 program (July 22, 2014 proposal deadline).  The change applies to CAREER proposals submitted to all programs in Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Systems (CBET); Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI); Electrical, Computer and Cyber Systems (ECCS) and Engineering Education and Centers (EEC) within the Directorate of Engineering.

Click here to read the Dear Colleague Letter, which contains contact information for NSF officials who can answer any questions about the change.

 

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Baylor undergraduate conducts research to improve on a natural tumor-fighter http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/22/baylor-undergraduate-conducts-research-aimed-at-improving-on-a-natural-tumor-fighter/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/22/baylor-undergraduate-conducts-research-aimed-at-improving-on-a-natural-tumor-fighter/#comments Tue, 22 Apr 2014 13:25:36 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2204 Continue reading ]]> Cassie Robertson displayed a poster of her research at the 2014 URSA Scholars Week.

Cassie Robertson displayed a poster of her research at the 2014 URSA Scholars Week.

Many times when we think of modern medicine, we think of synthesized chemicals, complex laboratories and doctors in white coats. In this mindset, we often forget where medicine at its most basic form is found: nature.

Senior Business Fellow and pre-med major Cassie Robertson, under the advisement of Dr. Kevin Pinney, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, has employed this simple philosophy in her investigation of the cancer fighting ability of a compound found in the African Bush Willow Tree.

Robertson is attempting to expand upon the research of Dr. George Robert Pettit, director of the cancer research institute at Arizona State University. Pettit began his research in 1982 after visiting South Africa where he learned of the African Bush Willow Tree’s historical healing power, particularly in its bark.

“The African Bush Willow Tree has been used for centuries by locals for home remedies and other forms of medicine, but Dr. Pettit saw its potential ability to inhibit tumor growth,” Robertson said.

Pettit identified two tumor-inhibiting compounds called combretastatins, which are found naturally in the African Bush Willow Tree.  Through her research, Robertson hopes to improve the compounds’ ability to inhibit tumor growth.

“There are two rings in the combretastatin’s molecule connected by a bridge of carbons; I am trying to manipulate the bridge by adding and removing carbons to determine if it improves the molecule’s ability to fight cancer,” Robertson said.

Surprisingly, the means by which the compound attacks the tumor cells is fairly simple.

Robertson explained, “The molecule inhibits tumor growth by attaching to the tumor and preventing blood from reaching it, inherently stopping cell division. Tumors need to be able to form their own blood vessels quickly in order to sustain growth, so by stopping blood flow, the tumor dies from starvation of nutrients.”

If Robertson is successful in improving the compounds cancer-fighting capabilities, the research could potentially provide the means to safely fight cancer in the future.

“This molecule would be taken in the form of a pill and would eliminate the tumor without causing as much harm to the body’s healthy cells as chemotherapy incites,” Robertson said. “The molecule is able to target the tumor rather than attacking normal cells, due to the fact that tumors divide rapidly compared to normal cells — and this helps the molecule distinguish between the two.”

Robertson plans a career in the medical field after graduation and hopes that by laying the foundation for this project, another student will be able to continue the research.

For Robertson, her research has had its ups and downs, but despite the challenges, she has found the experience worthwhile.

According to Robertson, “Although this project has been stressful at times, it is great to see all of the pieces come together and to see my hard work throughout college pay off in my senior year.”

This story is part of a series of undergraduate research highlights by Caleb Barfield, a student worker in the Office of the Vice Provost for Research.  Caleb is a freshman from Denton majoring in journalism, new media and public relations.  Click here to read more of his work.

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OVPR releases 2014 Research Magazine http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/17/ovpr-releases-2014-research-magazine/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/17/ovpr-releases-2014-research-magazine/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 16:15:58 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2179 Continue reading ]]> The Office of the Vice Provost for Research is proud to announce the release of the 2014 issue of Research magazine!  This year’s magazine brings you stories about some of the great research and scholarly activity undertaken by Baylor faculty and students and their collaborative partners outside the university.

In this year’s magazine, you can read about:

  • A Baylor environmental scientist and the university’s artist in residence, both of whom draw inspiration from geologic formations to enhance our understanding of the world around us;
  • Two Baylor chemists performing leading cancer research while providing opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to gain real-world laboratory experience;
  • The dean of Baylor’s Honors College, who takes a philosophical approach to popular culture and encourages students to think more deeply about the media they consume;
  • Faculty in Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing, who improve the practice of patient care through their research and teaching;
  • The Green Scholars Initiative, which provides Baylor faculty and students with unprecedented opportunities to examine ancient texts first-hand;
  • Baylor’s culture of mentorship that helps prepare the way for future scholars, artists and professionals;
  • Partnerships between Baylor and other, nearby research institutions, which open the door for faculty and students to make world-changing biomedical discoveries; and
  • A partnership that allowed Baylor students to team with industry leaders to improve a product that protects our most precious natural resource.

Click here to read the 2014 Research magazine online, or contact the OVPR to request a printed copy.

 

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NIH announces change to proposal resubmission policy http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/17/nih-announces-change-to-proposal-resubmission-policy/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/17/nih-announces-change-to-proposal-resubmission-policy/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 15:20:44 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2224 Continue reading ]]> NIH_LogoThe National Institutes of Health and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality have announced a change to their policy regarding resubmission of unfunded research grant proposals.

Since 2009, NIH and AHRQ policy has limited unsuccessful proposals to one resubmission.  If a resubmission was also not funded, investigators were required to substantially change the content and scope of their project in order to submit it as a new proposal.

The latest change, announced today on the NIH website, allows unsuccessful resubmissions to be presented as new applications without a redesign of the project’s content and scope. While applicants are encouraged to take advantage of previous reviewers’ comments and suggestions, they will not be required to specifically address them in the proposal.

For more information on this new policy, check out today’s blog post by Dr. Sally Rockey, NIH’s deputy director for extramural research.

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Baylor faculty receive federal grant for research aimed at developing safer industrial chemicals http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/16/baylor-faculty-receive-federal-grant-for-research-aimed-at-developing-safer-industrial-chemicals/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/16/baylor-faculty-receive-federal-grant-for-research-aimed-at-developing-safer-industrial-chemicals/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:40:16 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2195 Continue reading ]]> Dr. Bryan Brooks (Baylor University Photography)

Dr. Bryan Brooks (Baylor University Photography)

Dr. Bryan Brooks, a professor of environmental science and biomedical studies in Baylor’s College of Arts and Sciences will lead a team of scientists from four universities collaborating to make industrial chemicals that are less toxic to humans and the environment.

Brooks, along with Dr. Spencer Williams, a research assistant professor in Baylor’s Center for Reservoir and Aquatic Systems Research (CRASR), will team with faculty at Yale University, George Washington University and the University of Washington on the four-year, $4.4 million dollar project, funded by the National Science Foundation and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The four-university research team, known as the  Molecular Design Research Network (MoDRN), will conduct research to develop computer models to help predict whether molecules will cause toxicity. Alongside the research, education and outreach efforts will help high school students, undergraduates, teachers and practitioners connect with the concepts being studied.

Click here to read more about the project.

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CUR offers grants to offset travel costs for CUR Conference 2014 attendees http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/15/cur-offers-grants-to-offset-travel-costs-for-cur-conference-2014-attendees/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/15/cur-offers-grants-to-offset-travel-costs-for-cur-conference-2014-attendees/#comments Tue, 15 Apr 2014 13:29:33 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2184 Continue reading ]]> CUR_Conf_Banner_Web

The Council on Undergraduate Research is offering a limited number of $250 grants to help offset travel costs for individuals attending the CUR Conference 2014, ”Creating the Citizens of Tomorrow: Undergraduate Research for All.”  The conference takes place June 28-July 1 in Washington, D.C.

According to the CUR website, preference will be given to individuals from historically under-represented institutions, first-time conference attendees and those who demonstrate financial need.

Click here for more information and application instructions.  The deadline to apply for the grants is April 25.

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Selected funding opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/14/selected-funding-opportunities-in-science-technology-engineering-and-mathematics-fields-8/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/14/selected-funding-opportunities-in-science-technology-engineering-and-mathematics-fields-8/#comments Mon, 14 Apr 2014 21:25:24 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2127 Continue reading ]]> National Institutes of Health

Collaborative Research in Integrative Cancer Biology (U01)
Deadlines: June 18, 2014; Nov. 13, 2014; June 18, 2015; Nov. 13, 2015.  Letter of intent due 30 days before the full proposal deadlines.

Image-Guided Drug Delivery in Cancer (R01)
Deadlines: June 19, 2014; Nov. 19, 2014; June 19, 2015; Nov. 19, 2015.

Research Education Grants for Statistical and Computational Training in the Genetics of Addiction (R25)
Deadline: Aug. 21.

National Science Foundation

Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program
Deadlines: July 21 (BIO, CISE and EHR directorates), July 22 (ENG directorate), July 23 (GEO, MPS and SBE directorates).

Geomorphology and Land Use Dynamics
Deadlines: July 16, 2014; Jan. 16, 2015.

Interdisciplinary Behavioral and Social Science Research (IBSS)
Deadline: Dec. 2.

Linguistics Program
Deadline: July 15.

Research Traineeship (NRT) Program (Limited submission)
Deadlines: Internal pre-proposal due May 13; full proposal due June 24.

U.S. Department of Defense

Awards to Stimulate and Support Undergraduate Research Experiences (ASSURE)
Deadline: May 23; Aug. 27.

Other organizations and foundations

American Heart Association
Scientist Development Grant (SDG) – National
Deadline: July 24.

National Geographic Society
Committee for Research and Exploration Grants (Hypothesis-Driven Grants)
Pre-applications accepted continuously.

Samsung
Global Collaboration: 2014 GRO Program
Deadline: June 13.

More opportunities
Additional selected opportunities are available on the OVPR website.

Limited submissions
For opportunities with limitations on submissions from a single institution, an internal review must be completed before an investigator may apply.  Click here for information on applying for limited submission opportunities.

Search for funding with COS Pivot
The OVPR maintains a subscription to COS Pivot, a searchable database of funding opportunities in all academic areas. To search for funding in your discipline and receive email alerts with newly listed opportunities, sign up with COS Pivot today. If you have questions or would like training on using COS Pivot, contact Blake Thomas in the OVPR at 254-710-3153.

Ready to apply?
If you’d like to apply for these, or other specific funding opportunities, contact your academic unit’s assigned OSP coordinator for more information.

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Upcoming event: BRIC Foundations Series presents lecture by Nick Farah of L-3 Integrated Systems Group http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/07/upcoming-event-bric-foundations-series-presents-lecture-by-nick-farah-of-l-3-integrated-systems-group/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/07/upcoming-event-bric-foundations-series-presents-lecture-by-nick-farah-of-l-3-integrated-systems-group/#comments Mon, 07 Apr 2014 16:55:00 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=2149 Continue reading ]]> bric_foundations-logo-web-600x200

The Office of the Vice Provost for Research is proud to present Mr. Nick Farah, the president of the Platform Systems Sector in L-3 Communications’ Integrated Systems Group, for the second event in the BRIC Foundations Lecture Series.

Public Lecture

The Importance of Strong Collaborative Research Bonds Between Industry and Higher Education

Abstract and details for Mr. Farah's lecture.

Abstract and details for Mr. Farah’s lecture.

Thursday, April 24, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Baylor Sciences Building, room B-110
Prior to the lecture, join us for a reception beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the BSB’s A2 elevator landing.

For more than a quarter-century, Farah has served L-3 Communications in a variety of high-level technical and executive capacities. His presentation will include both strategic and practical perspectives on the aerospace industry, which has become an economic mainstay of the Central Texas region. Long an advocate of partnering with technical vocational and higher educational institutions, he has overseen the establishment of collaborative projects that take full advantage of the many resources available from Texas State Technical College, McLennan Community College and Baylor University. Currently, L-3 Communications has 20 aerospace engineers in the BRIC to support ongoing collaborative projects with Baylor researchers.

About L-3 Communications

Headquartered in New York City, L-3 Communications is a Fortune 200 company employing approximately 48,000 people worldwide and is a prime contractor in Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance systems (C3ISR), platform and logistics solutions, and national security solutions. L-3 Communications is also a leading provider of a broad range of electronic systems used on military and commercial platforms. The company reported 2013 sales of $12.6 billion.

About BRIC Foundations

BRIC Foundations: Perspectives from Leaders in Innovation is an international speaker series featuring top experts in the fields of science, engineering, business, industry and workforce development. The series is intended to leverage the connections and resources of the BRIC to provide learning opportunities to Baylor faculty and students as well as the Central Texas community.

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Baylor faculty member earns NSF CAREER award http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/02/baylor-faculty-member-earns-nsf-career-award/ http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/2014/04/02/baylor-faculty-member-earns-nsf-career-award/#comments Wed, 02 Apr 2014 20:40:26 +0000 http://blogs.baylor.edu/researchtracks/?p=1742 Continue reading ]]> Dr. Bryan shaw is an assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry in Baylor University's College of Arts & Sciences.

Dr. Bryan Shaw is an assistant professor of chemistry and biochemistry in Baylor University’s College of Arts & Sciences.

Baylor biochemist Dr. Bryan Shaw has received a prestigious “CAREER” award grant from the National Science Foundation.

The NSF’s Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program awards grants to junior faculty who “exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.”

Shaw received the five-year, $405,000 award to further his group’s current research in precisely determining—and ultimately modifying—the net electrical charge of proteins, especially those containing metal ions, or “metalloproteins.” A metalloprotein’s net charge remains one of most difficult properties to measure, but is suspected to play a central role in its chemistry and perhaps in its toxicity. Shaw hypothesizes that altering the charge of some metalloproteins may prove to be an effective way to prevent or even to reverse the clumping together of certain proteins that characterizes such devastating disorders as ALS—Lou Gehrig’s Disease—and Alzheimer’s.

Part of the award also will expand one of Shaw’s current outreach projects: a collaboration with school districts across Texas in which 3D printing is used to make atomically accurate models of proteins. The models are used to convey the dynamic structure of proteins to blind and visually disabled students who face great challenges in learning and conceptualizing structural biology.

In 2009, Dr. Lorin Swint Matthews, an astrophysicist in Baylor’s Center for Astrophysics, Space Physics and Engineering Research (CASPER) was recognized with a five-year CAREER award, supporting her research into the aggregation of cosmic dust, a process thought to be crucial to the formation of planets.

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