Research Resources


Call for applications for R01 Writing Groups

Submitting your first successful R01 is a major challenge, but there is a way to make that task more productive and enjoyable! The University of Utah’s  KL2 Program, (part of the Utah Center for Clinical and Translational Science (Utah CCTS)) is organizing R01 writing groups that will include up to 5-7 junior faculty members each that are pursuing their first R01 NIH award (or equivalent). Each group will be headed by one or two senior faculty members with extensive success with NIH awards and study section reviewer experience. The groups will foster peer and senior mentoring to produce top quality grant submissions.

To register, please contact Sarah Elliott with a copy of your Specific Aims, Preliminary Data, Biosketch, and Letter of Support from your Department supporting the time and effort to participate in the program. Applications are due by Nov. 11, 2019.

If you have specific questions about the R01 Writing Group program content or qualifications, please contact either Dr. Maureen Murtaugh or Dr. David Turok.


National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Institutes program application

Accelerating Research, Transforming Society and Growing the American Workforce

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has advanced tremendously and today promises personalized healthcare; enhanced national security; improved transportation; and more effective education, to name just a few benefits. Increased computing power, the availability of large datasets and streaming data, and algorithmic advances in machine learning (ML) have made it possible for AI development to create new sectors of the economy and revitalize industries. Continued advancement, enabled by sustained federal investment and channeled toward issues of national importance, holds the potential for further economic impact and quality-of-life improvements.

The 2019 update to the National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan, informed by visioning activities in the scientific community as well as interaction with the public, identifies as its first strategic objective the need to make long-term investments in AI research in areas with the potential for long-term payoffs in AI.

This program, a joint effort of the National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science & Technology Directorate (S&T), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), seeks to enable such research through AI Research Institutes. This program solicitation describes two tracks: Planning and Institute tracks. Submissions to the Planning track are encouraged in any areas of foundational and use-inspired research appropriate to NSF and its partner organizations. Proposals for the Institute track must have a principal focus in one or more of the following themes, detailed in the Program Description under Institute Track:

  • Trustworthy AI
  • Foundations of Machine Learning
  • AI-Driven Innovation in Agriculture and the Food System
  • AI-Augmented Learning
  • AI for Accelerating Molecular Synthesis and Manufacturing
  • AI for Discovery in Physics

Click here to learn more about the program or to apply.


‘All of Us’ research program seeks public input to inform tribal collaborations

The “All of Us” Research Program is working with American Indian and Alaska Native tribal nations to ensure that all issues and concerns related to research among American Indians and Alaska Natives are understood.

The NIH program has issued a Request for Information to collect additional input from formal consultations and engagements with tribal nations. Individuals and organizations interested in commenting on the issue should submit their responses by Oct. 31.

“All of Us” aims to build a participant community that reflects the country’s rich diversity, including American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/AN) and other groups that have been historically underrepresented in biomedical research. The program recognizes the importance of collaborations with tribal nations to facilitate the inclusion of AI/AN populations. Accordingly, in spring 2019, the first step in establishing a meaningful partnership with the AI/AN population, “All of Us” initiated a government-to-government consultation with tribal nations to better understand leaders’ views and concerns about the program.

Through this RFI, the program seeks further input on the issues raised during the consultation, which include, among others:

  • The importance of proper handling of AI/AN biospecimens in accordance with Tribal beliefs and traditions
  • Challenges with handling data from self-identified AI/AN individuals
  • Educating the research community on the avoidance of stigmatizing research.

Responses to the RFI will be accepted through Oct. 31, 2019, and must be submitted here, via email. For full details, please view the RFI. For more information about the “All of Us” Research Program, click here.


F&A distribution and usage town hall follow-up

The Office of the Vice President for Research (VPR) recently conducted two town hall events on a new Facilities and Administration (F&A) Distribution & Usage strategic initiative. Thank you to our research community for attending those town halls, and for providing your very useful perspectives and feedback.

In an effort to be transparent and promote a culture of fairness for our entire research community, the VPR Office has posted several resources on the main VPR website, including the FY20 F&A Town Hall presentation, a F&A Guiding principles and summary, a graduate student tuition guidance document, and the F&A Task Force review and recommendations report.

These materials can be found by clicking here.

Please feel free to share these materials broadly with your faculty, staff, post-docs and students.


Lessons learned regarding chemical exposure on campus

Lessons learned: Chemical exposure

While checking on the progress of an ongoing gas sensor test a post-doctoral researcher was exposed to a chemical known as cadaverine when an over pressurization event dislodged a flask stopper spraying the chemical onto the post doc’s face.

What happened?

While checking on the progress of an ongoing gas sensor test a post-doctoral researcher was exposed to a chemical known as cadaverine. While making an adjustment to the experiment the researcher inadvertently obstructed the tube connected to the test apparatus causing the test flask to over pressurize, pushing the stopper out of the top of the flask and splashing the chemical inside the flask into the face of the post doc. The test set up was located inside a chemical fume hood but the fume hood sash was not properly configured to protect from a splash hazard. The post doc was not wearing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE). The postdoc’s face was rinsed for 15 minutes, the SDS for the chemical in question was retrieved and the postdoc was transported to the University Hospital emergency room for evaluation. The incident was not reported to EHS in a timely manner as required.

What went right:

  • Post Doc was not working alone
  • Lab group responded quickly and appropriately by 
rinsing the exposed area thoroughly for 15 minutes 
then taking the SDS to the ER with them
  • Principal Investigator is taking the opportunity to review 
all lab SOPs and complete a safety self-inspection

Lessons learned:

This incident emphasizes the need for robust written standard operating procedures (SOP) and training of lab personnel on the requirements of those SOPs.
The following lessons learned were identified by lab personnel and EHS:

  • Written SOPS: A robust written SOP is a critical element of any laboratory’s safe operations. Written SOP ensure that appropriate controls are in place to prevent incidents of injuries as well as ensuring the integrity of the research.
  • Training is crucial: Lab personnel were unaware of the proper procedures for handling an incident such as this and had to ask for guidance from an adjacent lab. Principal Investigators are responsible to ensure that all lab personnel have been properly and adequately trained in emergency procedures.
  • Wear your PPE: Personal protective equipment is your last line of defense against injury. Minimum PPE when working in a lab is long pants, closed shoes, lab coat, eye protection and appropriate gloves. Additional PPE may be required as outlined in the lab’s written SOPs.
  • Use equipment properly: When working in a fume hood the sash glass must be positioned such that it is between the user and the experiment inside the hood.
  • Situational Awareness: Always pay close attention to all aspects of an experiment in progress to help prevent inadvertent actions leading to system failure.
  • Assess the Risk: Reviewing SOPs and experimental procedures every time an experiment is conducted is crucial. Even if you have performed an experiment fifty times the procedure should be reviewed every single time. Asking every time, “what could go wrong with this experiment,” and ensuring measures are in place to prevent incidents.

801.581.6590 | oehs.utah.edu


DEA statement for U of U faculty members, employed institutional veterinarians, and research staff

UNIVERSITY OF UTAH
DEA REGISTRATION NUMBER FEE EXEMPTION INTERPRETATION AND POLICY
AS APPLICABLE TO
UNIVERSITY OF UTAH FACULTY MEMBERS AND UNIVERSITY OF UTAH EMPLOYED INSTITUTIONAL VETERINARIANS AND RESEARCH STAFF 

MEMORANDUM

To:                  University of Utah Research Faculty, Administration, & Staff
From:              Andrew S. Weyrich, Ph.D., Vice President for Research, University of Utah
Date:               September 1, 2019
Re:                  Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Registration Fee Exemption Interpretation

Faculty, institutional veterinarians, certain research staff, and other University of Utah employees who are required to obtain a DEA registration number as part of their official University of Utah duties (collectively RESEARCHER) are exempt from paying application or renewal fees, so long as the RESEARCHER is acting within the scope of his or her official state duties and his or her only direct compensation is provided by an agency of the State of Utah (e.g., University of Utah, University of Utah School of Medicine, University of Utah College of Pharmacy, etc.). 

FAQs

Q: What about moonlighting, consulting, private practice, or non-University research?

A: Consulting (meaning any work that is outside the course and scope of a person’s University of Utah employment) must be done in accordance with University policy. See Policy 5-204.

Moonlighting for physicians (meaning clinical work that is outside of the course and scope of a person’s University of Utah employment) is not allowed by University of Utah School of Medicine policy. See Policy 8-001.

An employee participating in moonlighting, consulting, private practice, or research outside the course and scope of University employment cannot claim the DEA fee exemption for those activities.


Q: Who should I list in the registration as the “Fee Exempt Institution”?

A: Please list the University of Utah as the name of the Fee Exempt Institution on the registration form.


Q: Who is the Certifying Superior for purposes of the fee exemption?

A: You cannot certify yourself. For faculty of the School of Medicine, the Certifying Superior is the Department Chair or Division Chief who approves credentials / privileges associated with your department or division. You should be prepared to provide the name, title, email address, and phone number of this individual in connection with your fee exemption application. You should ensure that this Certifying Superior has sufficient information about your employment such that they could answer questions from the DEA if necessary about your duties for an agency of the State of Utah (i.e., University of Utah), your state Controlled Substance license, if applicable, and the requirement that you have a DEA registration in connection with your duties.

For faculty of academic departments and colleges other than the School of Medicine, the Certifying Superior is your Dean or an individual to whom the Dean has delegated this responsibility.


Q: What is the role of the Certifying Superior?

A: The Certifying Superior is listed on the fee exemption application as the person who can certify that the underlying registrant is employed by an agency of the State of Utah, is performing services for that agency, is receiving salary from that agency, and is required to have DEA registration in connection with her/his job duties for the agency. The Certifying Superior cannot certify an individual who is performing outside the course and scope of employment for an agency of the State of Utah, such as moonlighting or consulting activities or private practice duties.


Q: What about institutional veterinarians, veterinary staff, research staff, and other non-faculty RESEARCHERS?

A: Other University of Utah-employed RESEARCHERS also qualify for the exemption when performing duties on behalf of an agency of the State of Utah. For example, institutional veterinarians and staff who are employees of the Office for Comparative Medicine (OCM) are eligible for a fee-exempt DEA registration if such registration is required in the course and scope of their University employment. For their Certifying Superior, OCM employees should list the institutional veterinarian.

Moonlighting, consulting, and private practice outside the course and scope of University of Utah employment are not eligible for the DEA fee exemption. In addition, RESEARCHERS cannot use their fee-exempt DEA registration when conducting research for which the RESEARCHER receives a paycheck from an entity other than an agency of the State of Utah (e.g., when research funding from a non-University entity is paid from the entity directly to the RESEARCHER, rather than to the University).


Q: What if I conduct research outside of the State of Utah?

A: RESEARCHERS will need to obtain a separate DEA registration in each state where they plan to administer, dispense, or prescribe controlled substances.


Q: What if I conduct research at the VA or at another non-University facility?

A: RESEARCHERS may use their fee-exempt DEA registration at the VA and other non- University facilities within Utah, as long as the research is part of their official state duties (i.e., in the course and scope of their University of Utah employment) and their only direct compensation is provided by an agency of the State of Utah (e.g., University of Utah, University of Utah School of Medicine, etc.).


Research Culture Survey

You are invited to participate in the University of Utah’s Survey of Organizational Research Climate.

We are asking you to help the Office of Research Integrity and Compliance assess our current climate for scholarly and research integrity by completing an online survey that will take less than 10 minutes. Your participation is voluntary but important to the success of this effort. All departments that sufficiently participate will receive aggregated data about their department’s responses about their research climate along with national averages specific to that discipline. Further, these data will serve as a baseline for how resources for research education and training should be prioritized.

All faculty, scientists, researchers, technicians, postdoctoral trainees and graduate students across the organization are being asked to participate.

We hope you will join us in participating. Click here to take the survey.


NIH Loan Repayment Program

NIH Loan Repayment Program: 2020 Application Cycle Sept. 1-Nov. 15, 2019

Do you have outstanding student loan debt? The congressionally established National Institute of Health Loan Repayment Programs (NIH LRP) is designed to recruit and retain highly qualified health professionals into biomedical or biobehavioral research careers. Successful applicants will have up to $50,000 annually of qualified educational debt repaid by the NIH in return for a commitment to engage in NIH mission-relevant research. From 2011-18, the application success rate for the NIH LRP was 50%.

There are five specific program areas for the NIH Loan Repayment Program: Clinical Research, Pediatric Research, Health Disparities Research, Contraception and Infertility Research and Clinical Research for Individuals from Disadvantaged Backgrounds.

The online application period is Sept. 1-Nov. 15, 2019 (5 p.m. local time).

For more information, review the NIH LRP website, or contact Jan Abramson, M.S., Office of Sponsored Projects.


NEXUS’ Core Facilities—Focus group room available for use

NEXUS’ Core Facilities at Gardner Commons house a Focus Group Room.

The room has a projection screen for groups, can record audio/video in the attached observation room which is separated via a two-way mirror and opens new avenues of research with individuals of diverse groups.

This room must be reserved in advance, and requires keycard access and
NEXUS Membership.

More information on the focus group room and NEXUS facilities.


Seed Grant Program reminder

The Office of the Vice President for Research’s Seed Grant Program is currently running. The goal of the seed program is to support investigators collecting preliminary data that can be leveraged for extramural grant applications.

For questions on eligibility and applications please reach out to your college’s associate dean for Research.


Limited Submissions

NSF Advancing Informal STEM Learning (AISL)

External deadline: Nov. 6, 2019 

Summary: The Advancing Informal STEM Learning (AISL) program seeks to advance new approaches to and evidence-based understanding of the design and development of STEM learning opportunities for the public in informal environments; provide multiple pathways for broadening access to and engagement in STEM learning experiences; advance innovative research on and assessment of STEM learning in informal environments; and engage the public of all ages in learning STEM in informal environments.

Click here to apply via Infoready.


 NSF Critical-Zone Collaborative Network

Internal deadline: Oct. 21, 2019
External deadline: Dec. 2, 2019

NSF seeks proposals to establish an adaptive and responsive research network that supports investigations of the Earth’s Critical Zone.  This network will consist of two components that will work together to advance knowledge, education, and outreach in this convergent science: 1) Thematic Clusters of fixed or temporary locations will conduct basic research on significant, overarching scientific questions concerning the structure, function, and processes of the Critical Zone. These U.S.-based Clusters could include existing observatories engaged in collecting environmental data, other monitoring locations that have been in operation for extended periods of time, and new sites that will support the scientific goals of the Cluster;  2) A Coordinating Hub  that will oversee the compatibility and archiving of the data resulting from the Thematic Clusters, coordinate outreach and community-building activities, support the use of network facilities by outside researchers, and plan for infrastructure needs of the network.

Click here to apply via Infoready.


NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) Program

Internal deadline: Oct. 25, 2019
External deadline: Dec. 6, 2019 

The NSF Research Traineeship (NRT) program is designed to encourage the development and implementation of bold, new, and potentially transformative models for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduate education training. The NRT program seeks proposals that explore ways for graduate students in research-based master’s and doctoral degree programs to develop the skills, knowledge and competencies needed to pursue a range of STEM careers.

Click here to apply via Infoready


 Edward J. Mallinckrodt Jr. Foundation: Mallinckrodt Scholar Awards

Internal submission deadline: Nov. 1, 2019
Award amount:  $100,000 for 4 years
Limited submission: Two nominees

The mission of the Foundation is to support early stage investigators engaged in basic biomedical research that has the potential to significantly advance the understanding, diagnosis or treatment of disease.

Click here to learn more.


Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholars

Internal submission deadline: Nov. 1, 2019
Award amount: $75,000 unrestricted funds
Limited submission: One nominee

The Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Awards Program supports the research and teaching careers of talented young faculty in the chemical sciences. Based on institutional nominations, the program provides discretionary funding to faculty at an early stage in their careers. Criteria for selection include an independent body of scholarship attained in the early years of their appointment (see below), and a demonstrated commitment to education, signaling the promise of continuing outstanding contributions to both research and teaching.

Click here to learn more.


David and Lucille Packard Fellowships for Science and Engineering

Internal submission deadline: Nov. 1, 2019
Award amount: $875,000 over 5 years
Limited submission: Two nominees

The Fellowship Program provides support for highly creative researchers early in their careers; faculty members who are well established and well-funded are less likely to receive the award. Packard Fellows are inquisitive, passionate scientists and engineers who take a creative approach to their research, dare to think big, and follow new ideas wherever they lead.

Click here to learn more.


Moore Inventor Fellows

Internal submission deadline:  Nov. 1, 2019
Award amount: $675,000 over 3 years
Limited submission: Two nominees

The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation is launching a competition to identify outstanding inventors who harness science and technology to enhance the conduct of scientific research, strengthen environmental conservation, or improve the experience and outcomes of patient care.

Click here to learn more.


Brain Research Foundation – Fay/Frank Seed Grant Program

Internal submission deadline:  Nov. 1, 2019
Award amount: $80,000 over 2 years
Limited submission: One nominee

The Seed Grant program supports full-time Assistant or Associate Professors working in the field of neuroscience. The program aims to provide start-up money for new and innovative research projects that have the potential to become competitive for an NIH grant or other external funding sources.

Click here to learn more.


Intramural Funding

 

Laboratory Health and Safety Equipment Fund
Internal deadline: June 30, 2020 

The Laboratory Health and Safety Equipment Fund (LHSEF) is a limited-time opportunity to obtain funding for laboratory supplies or equipment necessary to address immediate health and safety needs or non-compliance conditions. The fund is intended to address urgent health and safety needs for which funding is not currently available or for which funding was not requested in the FY20 budgeting process. Beyond FY20 it is expected that funding for health and safety equipment would be included in the normal departmental budgeting process, course fees and grant proposals. Up to $10,000 can be requested in each application. Please see the info sheet for more details.

Note: This is a rolling award that is available throughout FY20. If equipment is needed, you do not need to wait for the deadline to apply.

Click here to apply via Infoready.


Corporate and Foundation Funding

The University of Utah Corporate and Foundation Relations program can help build a relationship between you and potential private funding partners. Our team can advise on strategic approaches, arrange visits, review draft proposals and help translate ideas into fundable projects or programs. Please contact Chris Ostrander at 5-7220 if you are interested in applying for an opportunity listed below, or on the CFR Funding Opportunity website.

 


Michelson Medical Research Foundation: The Michelson Prize

Deadline: Oct. 31, 2019

Amount: $150,000

The Michelson Prizes are annual awards of $150,000 that support young investigators under the age of 35 who are using disruptive concepts and inventive processes to significantly advance human immunology and vaccine and immunotherapy discovery research for major global diseases.

The 2020 Michelson Prizes will focus on transformative research in human immunology, with trans-disease applications to accelerate vaccine and immunotherapeutic discovery. The selection committee will be looking to support research that is both highly innovative and has the potential for high impact. Specifically, projects should propose innovative ideas and approaches that can be applied across many disease areas and states.  Projects should have the potential to significantly expand our understanding of the human immune system and accelerate the development of vaccines and immunotherapies. While the Michelson Prizes are focused on research in the fields of immunology, vaccine and immunotherapy discovery, applicants from the full spectrum of related disciplines, including clinical research, biochemistry, molecular biology, protein engineering, computer science, artificial intelligence/machine learning, biophysics, nanotechnology, etc., are encouraged to apply.

Click here to learn more.


Robert Wood Johnson Foundation: Systems for Action

Deadline: Nov. 6, 2019

Amount: $500,000

Systems for Action (S4A) is a signature research program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) that helps to build the evidence base for a Culture of Health by rigorously testing new ways of connecting the nation’s fragmented medical, social, and public health systems. Studies conducted through the S4A program test innovative mechanisms for aligning delivery and financing systems for medical, social, and public health services, with a focus on the effects of these mechanisms on health and health equity. S4A uses a wide research lens that includes and extends beyond medical care and public health to incorporate social service systems—such as housing, transportation; education; employment; food and nutrition assistance; child and family support; criminal and juvenile justice; and economic and community development.

Click here to learn more.