Udall Center makes call for proposals

January 31, 2018  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources

The U-M Udall Center of Excellence for Parkinson’s Disease (PD) Research is requesting proposals for its annual Pilot Grant Program (PGP).

The central themes of the Udall Center are the role of cholinergic signaling in gait and balance abnormalities in PD and the development of novel treatment strategies targeted at cholinergic neurotransmission.

The overarching hypothesis is that the loss of striatal dopamine in PD imposes increased demands for compensation on other brain systems, including cholinergic systems (basal forebrain, pedunculopontine nucleus) involved in attentional function and the control of gait and posture, and that the subsequent loss of these systems contributes significantly to the progressive dopamine-resistant gait abnormalities that characterize later stages of the disease.

The Udall PGP aims to advance or expand upon these scientific themes.

Accordingly, it is calling for proposals exploring, but not limited to, the following research areas:

  • Utilizing animal/cell model or human subject paradigms
  • Biomechanical characterization of gait, especially in relation to PD
  • The functional relationship between cholinergic and dopaminergic neurotransmission in behavior (e.g., rodent studies), including manipulation or detection of these systems during defined behaviors
  • Development of novel compounds or technologies to modulate cholinergic neurotransmission
  • Interface between attention and motor function
  • Analysis of other behaviorally relevant examples where a lesion in dopaminergic neurotransmission places additional compensatory demands on a different neural circuit
  • Relevant human neuropathological studies.

Faculty from all schools and colleges at U-M are eligible to apply. Applications from junior faculty or to support the activities of Postdoctoral fellows considering work in relevant areas is particularly encouraged. Preference will be given to applicants not currently engaged directly in PD research, in accordance with the Udall Center's goal of increasing and enhancing the PD research effort at U-M.

This grant mechanism will support one $50,000 grant annually. The support can be used for the direct support of salary and/or supplies (no indirect support is allowed). No tuition support is available. Equipment in excess of $5,000 needs special justification, and is in general not encouraged.

Applications should be submitted through the U-M Medical School Office of Research’s Competition Space portal.

One page proposals written in the format of an R01 specific aims page, budget and budget justification, biosketch in NIH format, and Other Support/Supplemental Funding form are due by Friday, March 30. Submit all documents as a single pdf. Biosketch, budget and budget justification, and Other Support templates are provided in the Competition Space. Start date is expected to be June 1, but is somewhat flexible.

Please note that any project involving animal or human samples must provide proof of UCUCA or IRB permission prior to initiation of the project. If this is not obtained within 60 days of the funding date for the project, funding will be withdrawn.

Questions about the Udall Pilot Grant Program should be directed to Nancy Laracey, administrator, Udall Center for Parkinson’s Disease Research at laracey@med.umich.edu

Website: https://umms.infoready4.com/#homePage

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