Planting a Seed - New Grants Grow UMB-UMBC Research Partnership
|More and more of that vital work is being conducted in collaborations
between faculty at the University of Maryland,
Baltimore County (UMBC) and the University
of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB).
The latest venture to expand the research partnership between the two
neighboring universities (separated by less than seven miles) is a
joint UMBC-UMB Research and
Innovation Partnership Seed Grant Program that pairs primary
investigators from each university to conduct research as a team.
Successful partners are offered research funding of up to $75,000 over
12 months to pursue their collaboration.
The program's first grant recipients were announced at a ceremony and
poster session held at UMBC's Albin O. Kuhn Library on Feb. 11. Those selected for the awards included faculty in UMBC's College of Natural and Mathematical
Science and College of
Engineering and Information Technology, as well as researchers in
the University of Maryland School of
Medicine and the University of
Maryland School of Pharmacy.
At the announcement ceremony, UMB Chief Academic and Research Officer
and Senior Vice President Bruce
Jarrell, MD, FACS, observed that the Seed Grant Program
represents the deepening of a relationship that already includes
cooperation on a joint graduate school and the Institute of Marine Environmental
Technology (IMET) as well as a panoply of curricular efforts in
areas such as the life sciences, gerontology, health informatics and
"These collaborations already exist," Jarrell observed. "And we're
proud to have UMBC as a partner."
UMBC President Freeman A. Hrabowski,
III, PhD, is enthusiastic about the projects selected for the initial
round, which include investigations that may influence the course of
research into cancer, strokes, and muscle degeneration.
"The Seed Grant Program is a means by which both universities can
better discover each other's strengths and needs to see how we can
better collaborate," says Hrabowski.
Jay A. Perman, MD, president of UMB, says increased partnership
between the two universities is a key element of his vision. "I cannot
stress enough the importance we place on our collaborative relationship
with our colleagues at UMBC. The partnerships that UMBC and UMB have
enjoyed for years are real, longstanding collaborations, and have been
extremely successful, if not widely known."
At the state level, the research partnerships fostered by the Seed
Grant Program will further extend Maryland's research profile and aid
in securing vital funding from federal agencies, private foundations
and other funding sources.
William E. Kirwan, PhD, Chancellor
of the University System of Maryland (USM),
praises the new program for its "focus on cutting-edge science and
health concerns" and its emphasis on interdisciplinary teamwork.
"It is this type of structured collaboration." Kirwan says, "that will
enable both UMBC and UMB - as well as the USM - to reach their full
potential, and to take full advantage of the opportunities before us."
The first five teams to receive UMBC-UMB Research and Innovation
Partnership Seed Grants are:
* Kathleen Hoffman, PhD, professor
of mathematics (UMBC) and Asaf
Keller, PhD, professor of anatomy and neurobiology (UMB), are
exploring the chronic pain of patients with spinal cord injury and how
computational modeling may help analyze the neurobiological changes in
the central nervous system after such injuries.
* Martin Schneider, PhD,
professor of biochemistry and molecular biology (UMB) and Bradford Peercy, assistant professor
of mathematics (UMBC) are combining forces to analyze a transcription
factor (Foxo1) in skeletal muscle that activates genes in a pathway
that leads to the breakdown of muscle protein. They hope to develop
protocols and models that will provide new approaches to controlling
* Charles Bieberich, PhD, professor
of biological sciences (UMBC) and Paul
Shapiro, PhD, associate professor of pharmaceutical sciences
(UMB) are working on a more targeted use of a promising cancer
treatment called "kinase inhibition." Currently kinase inhibition
creates resistance over time, so Bieberich and Shapiro are looking for
more selective paths to inhibit portions of an enzyme that allows
cancer cells to multiply without shutting down other functions in the
* Marie-Christine Daniel, PhD,
associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry (UMBC), and Peter Swaan, PhD, professor of
pharmaceutical sciences (UMB), are exploring how nanotechnology might
improve the delivery of drugs (increased dosage, or better targeting)
by examining a class of molecules known as "dendrons."
* Tulay Adali, PhD, professor of
computer science and electrical engineering (UMBC), and Kelly Westlake, PhD, MSc, PT,
assistant professor of physical therapy and rehabilitation science
(UMB), are exploring how using a powerful computational tool
(independent vector analysis) can aid in navigating variability in
cognitive neural function and better help the recovery of stroke
A call for proposals for the next round of the UMBC-UMB Research and
Innovation Partnership Seed Grant Program will be issued on April 15,
|Posting Date: 02/17/2014
|Contact Name: Alex Likowski
|Contact Phone: 410-706-3801
|Contact Email: email@example.com