Category Archives: Funders

Welcome back! Here’s a summer news recap: Hypoallergenic peanuts, EPICS, NC TraCS & more

To all who were gone over the summer, welcome back. Here’s a rundown of the top research-related news at A&T since May:

Faculty members, department chairs, and deans: We want to write about your research, scholarly and creative activity!  Let us know about it; click here for email.

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A&T researcher’s work on COPD among ag workers wins support from NC TraCS program for scholars

Dr. Jenora Waterman has made one key discovery toward improving the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) among agricultural workers, and now she’s been accepted into a prestigious career development program to advance her research.

Headshot of Dr. Waterman

Dr. Jenora Waterman

Dr. Waterman is an assistant professor of functional genomics in the Department of Animal Sciences at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. COPD is a major cause of death in the United States, most typically found among smokers. A less studied aspect of the disease is the 7% of its U.S. victims who are agricultural workers. They can develop COPD as a result of long-term exposure to animal production facilities containing dust that contributes to respiratory diseases.

High-density swine production houses are one example of such facilities.

Dr. Waterman’s first key finding came from comparing pigs raised indoors with those raised outdoors. Pigs aren’t as severely affected by the dust as humans are, but her work demonstrated that their respiratory systems are uniquely adapted to their housing type.

“My lab recently showed for the first time that pigs reared indoors and those raised outdoors exhibit structural and cellular differences in their respiratory systems,” Dr. Waterman says.

“The next step will be studying those differences to identify potential biomarkers that could serve as diagnostic or prognostic markers of agriculture-related COPD in humans.”

Dr. Waterman will take that step as an NC TraCS K-Scholar, a professional development honor for junior faculty members funded through the Clinical and Translational Science Awards (CTSA) program of the National Institutes of Health.

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New RTI University Scholars Program for faculty

The program: Faculty Scholars will participate in scholarly leave from their home institution and reside at RTI for one academic year in partnership with an RTI Host PI. 

  • Up to three Faculty Scholars will be selected in the  areas of human health, energy, and education & workforce development for academic year 2014-15.

Application deadline: January 31.

Key Details: Applications are limited to five pages. … The program is open to faculty members at A&T, Duke, North Carolina State, and UNC-Chapel Hill. … Awards will be announced by February 28.

Full details: Click here.

Transportation Institute receives renewal of funding to continue serving one of the Triad’s key industries

One of the Piedmont Triad’s key industries will receive two more years of education, research and workforce development from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

The U.S. Department of Transportation has awarded a two-year renewal of funding for the Transportation Institute at N.C. A&T.

“The Triad’s excellent geographic position makes it a prime location for the transportation and logistics industry,” said Dr. Kathryn Dobie, director of the Institute.

“But continued job growth and business success require more than just great location. Technology and the challenges of our economy make transportation and logistics as complex and dynamic as any high-impact industry.

“Our goal is to help the industry – and related ones, like construction – to grow and thrive in its rapidly changing environment and to be as efficient and effective as it can be.”

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Defense Threat Reduction Agency highlights Bikdash project and HBCUs’ research skills

The Defense Threat Reduction Agency: A straightforward name attached to a complex mission with more dimensions than you probably want to think about. Much of the agency’s research is conducted by universities, including N.C. A&T.

Dr. Marwan Bikdash, director of computational science and engineering at N.C. A&T, has conducted multiple research projects for the agency.  His latest concerns the survivability of critical infrastructure, such as the highway system, power grid, water supply, and data networks.

“All of these are large networks that form our infrastructure, and they are designed and optimized essentially independent of each other,” Dr. Bikdash says. “However, in a severe situation, they interact in rather unpredictable ways that we don’t fully understand because we typically don’t design them together.”

DTRA features Dr. Bikdash and HBCUs in general in the podcast above, posted last week. DTRA produced the podcast; DORED added the images.

Federal shutdown is ominous for A&T research

“The biggest impact on us is, there’s nobody at the federal agencies processing proposals. … There are 60 proposals we could have submitted in the first 10 days of October that are sitting on the desks here waiting to see what we should do.”

— Dr. Barry Burks, vice chancellor for research and economic development, quoted today in the News & Record

Click here for the full article.

Workshop: Building the NSF Grant Proposal

Flyer for NSF grant workshop, April 25, 2013

 

Click here for more information

Click here to register