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University Research Foundation: November 7
September 30, 2008 , Volume 55, No. 6

Below are the newly revised University Research Foundation Award Guidelines. Additional information and the application may be found online at www.upenn.edu/research/FoundationGuidelines.htm. The deadline for the fall Research Foundation proposals is November 7, 2008.

The University Research Foundation (URF) is now accepting applications for the November 7 deadline. The URF is an intramural funding program that provides up to $50,000 support for research projects and up to $3,000 for conference support.

The objectives of the URF research program are to: (1) Help junior faculty undertake pilot projects that will enable them to successfully apply for extramural sources of funding and aid in establishing their careers as independent investigators; (2) Help established faculty perform novel, pioneering research to determine project feasibility and develop preliminary data to support extramural grant applications; (3) Provide support in disciplines where extramural support is difficult to obtain and where significant research can be facilitated with internal funding; and (4) Provide limited institutional matching funds that are required as part of a successful external peer-reviewed application. URF Review Panels comprise established Penn faculty members and are charged with giving preference to projects that meet one of the aforementioned criteria.

Faculty members are invited to submit their research applications to one of four disciplinary areas: Biomedical Sciences, Humanities, Natural Sciences and Engineering, and Social Science and Management. In addition, URF offers a Conference Support program to provide funding for meetings designed to enhance existing research and scholarly programs, particularly in disciplines where external funding is difficult to obtain. Conferences that promote interdisciplinary and multi-school participation are given priority.

Complete details about the URF and links to the forms can be found on the Office of the Vice Provost for Research website at: www.upenn.edu/research/FoundationGuidelines.htm.

—Steven J. Fluharty, Vice Provost for Research

In the most recent cycle—spring 2008—of Penn’s internally-funded University Research Foundation, and URF Conference Support (noted with *), the Office of the Vice Provost for Research has announced awards to the following members of the Penn faculty for the projects listed below.

University Research Foundation Awards and
Conference Support Awards
Spring 2008

Lillian Aronson, Department of Clinical Studies, School of Veterinary Medicine; Effect of immunosuppressive drugs on feline T cell responses to pathogens.

Kendra Bence, Department of Animal Biology, School of Veterinary Medicine; Role of liver protein-tyrosine phosphatase 1B (PTP1B) in high fat diet-induced insulin resistance and development of fatty liver.

Ben Black, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, School of Medicine; The physical properties of centromeric chromatin.

Jon M. Burnham, Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine; Vitamin D supplementation in pediatric systemic lupus erythematosus.

Margaret M. Chou, Department of Cell and Developmental Biology, School of Medicine; Development of a murine model of aneurysmal bone cyst.

Melpo Christofidou-Solomidou, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine; Chemoprevention of lung cancer by phenolic lignan metabolites in mice.

Peter Dodson, Department of Animal Biology, School of Veterinary Medicine; Analysis of new basal ceratopsian dinosaur discoveries from Gansu, Northwestern China.

*Charles Epstein, Department of Mathematics, School of Arts and Sciences; Applied mathematics and computational science at Penn.

Ann Farnsworth-Alvear, Department of History, School of Arts and Sciences; Oral histories of Colombia’s gold-mining regions: From El Dorado to the Cocaine Kingdom.

Damon Freeman, Department of Social Policy & Practice, School of Social Policy & Practice; Kenneth B. Clark: Not So Simple Justice.

Ellen Giarelli, Department of Behavioral Health Systems, School of Nursing; Developmental disabilities and behavioral problems among school children in rural South Africa: Pilot and educational needs assessment.

Jessica Goldberg, Department of History, School of Arts and Sciences; Waterlogged flax, Syrian soap, and spicy cinnamon: Geographies of trade and traders in the Medieval Mediterranean.

*Howard Goldfine, Department of Microbiology, School of Medicine; Three conferences for Penn’s Year of Evolution.

Wei Guo, Department of Biology, School of Arts and Sciences; The role of Exo70 in Arp2/3-mediated actin polymerization and cell migration.

*Gary Hatfield, Department of Philosophy, School of Arts and Sciences; Measuring conscious experience: Philosophy and methodology.

Frank Lee, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, School of Medicine; Functional characterization of novel erythrocytosis-associated HIF-2 mutations.

*Heather Love, Department of English, School of Arts and Sciences; Rethinking sex: An international conference in gender and sexuality.

Jennifer Lukes, Department of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, School of Engineering and Applied Science; Stress-controlled nanoparticle patterning in alloy systems.

Aimee Payne, Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine; Mechanisms of Desmosomal turnover in pemphigus.

Laura Peoples, Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine; The role of cocaine-induced accumbal hypoactivity in cocaine addiction: The differential inhibition hypothesis.

Alain Plante, Department of Earth and Environmental Science, School of Arts and Sciences; Soil carbon responses to climate change in Northern Mongolia.

Kevin M. Platt, Department of Slavic Languages & Literatures, School of Arts and Sciences; Europeans at last: History, culture and identity among ethnic Russians and Russian speakers in the contemporary Baltic States.

Mechthild Pohlschroder, Department of Biology, School of Arts and Sciences; Structure and function of archaeal surface structures.

Ravi Radhakrishanan & Casim Sarkar, Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering, School of Engineering and Applied Science; Parsing the molecular mechanisms of DNA replication and lesion bypass through molecular modeling and directed evolution.

Makoto Senoo, Department of Animal Biology, School of Veterinary Medicine; Plasticity and aging of epithelia stem cells.

Melissa Wilde, Department of Sociology, School of Arts and Sciences; The birth and evolution of the culture wars.

Anna Laura Wolf-Powers, Department of City Planning, School of Design; Workforce development in Greater Philadelphia’s life sciences cluster: Can systems change support the integration of less educated workers?



Almanac - September 30, 2008, Volume 55, No. 6