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Joint NSF/NIH Initiative on Quantitative Approaches to Biomedical Big Data (QuBBD)

Proposals due:  September 28, 2016
Funding level:  $200k to $300K over 3 years
Link to solicitation 16-573:
Who is QuBBD for? This initiative seeks collaborative efforts that bring together quantitative scientists (with expertise in mathematical, statistical, or computational modeling) and biomedical researchers.

The Quantitative Approaches to Biomedical Big Data Program is designed to support research that addresses important application areas at the intersection of the biomedical and data sciences by encouraging inter- and multi-disciplinary collaborations that focus on innovative and transformative approaches to address these challenges.

Biomedical big data encompasses health- and disease-related data from biological, biomedical, behavioral, social, environmental, and clinical studies. It includes genomics data from next-generation sequencing, data from different imaging modalities, real-time and static data from wearable electronics, mobile devices, and environmental sensors, and clinical data from hospitals, insurance, and electronic medical records.

Novel methodology for visualization, modeling, and analysis of biomedical big data is essential to addressing the challenges posed by complex data structures such as images, text, networks, and graphs, unstructured data formats, complex dependence structures, non-stationarity, missing information, and sparsity. Appropriate application areas are those supported by the NIH Big Data to Knowledge initiative (see, including, but not limited to biomedical, behavioral, clinical, and translational sciences.

More Funding Blast

Pat Pyke | July 11, 2016 at 3:13 pm | Categories: Business and Economic Sciences, Funding Blast, Health Sciences, Social and Behavioral Sciences, STEM | URL:



Royalty Research Fund—Offered by the University of Washington to eligible faculty.
Seeks to advance new directions in research, particularly: in disciplines for which external funding opportunities are minimal; for faculty who are junior in rank; in cases where funding may provide unique opportunities to increase applicants’ competitiveness for subsequent funding. Awards of up to $40,000. Due date is September 26, 2016.Learn more about the Royalty Research Fund >

UW Radiology Pilot Data Awards for PET Radiotracer and PET/CT Imaging—To support new research endeavors, UW Radiology will provide up to $5,000 of in-kind support for pilot studies using PET radiotracers, pre-clinical PET/CT imaging, and human research PET/CT imaging. These funds are contingent on availability of resources. These funds are also specifically intended for pilot data for grant applications. Open to UW and non-UW investigators. For further information, please contact Steve Shoner for PET radiotracers, Robert Miyaoka for pre-clinical PET/CT imaging, or Paul Kinahan for clinical PET/CT imaging. More information about UW Radiology’s imaging sciences can be found by visiting the Radiology website.

Engagement Award: Knowledge, Training and Development, and Dissemination Awards—Offered by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. PCORI plans to award $20.5 million in FY 2016 as part of the Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Awards program. These awards support projects that encourage active integration of patients, caregivers, clinicians, and other healthcare stakeholders as integral members of the patient-centered outcomes research/clinical effectiveness research (PCOR/CER) enterprise. Award for up to $250,000 for up to two years. Letter of intent deadline is September 30, 2016. Learn more about the Knowledge, Training, Developments, and Dissemination Award >

Engagement Award: Research Meeting and Conference Support—Offered by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute. This award includes guidelines for available funding support for meetings and conferences that align with PCORI’s Mission and Strategic Plan and facilitate expansion of patient-centered outcomes research/clinical comparative effectiveness research (PCOR/CER). One-time award total costs must not exceed $50,000 and multi-year award total costs may not exceed $250,000. Application deadline is September 30, 2016. Learn more about Research Meeting and Conference Support >

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation: NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grant—This grant provides support for experienced investigators (full professor or equivalent) conducting neurobiological and behavioral research. A one-year grant of $100,000 is provided for established scientists pursuing innovative projects in diverse areas of neurobiological research. Areas of particular interest to the Scientific Council’s Selection Committee include patient populations with unique or unusual characteristics and central nervous system developments. Application deadline is July 20, 2016. Learn more about NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grant >

American Heart Association: Association-wide Established Investigator Award—Goal of award is to support mid-career investigators with unusual promise and an established record of accomplishments in cardiovascular or cerebrovascular science. A candidate’s career is expected to be in a rapid growth phase and research should be broadly related to cardiovascular function and disease and stroke, or to related clinical, basic science, bioengineering or biotechnology, and public health problems, including multidisciplinary efforts. Awards will be five years salary support of $80,000 (including up to 10 percent indirect costs). Application deadline is July 26, 2016. Learn more about the Investigator Award >

Science & SciLifeLab Prize for Young Scientists—Prize is awarded annually to one young scientist for outstanding life science research for which he/she was awarded a doctoral degree in the previous two years. The topic of the entrant’s thesis research must be in one of the following categories: Cell and Molecular Biology, Genomics and Proteomics, Ecology and Environment, or Translational Medicine. Funding is $30,000 for the grand prize winner, and $10,000 for each of the category winners. The grand prize winning essay will be published in Science and essays from the each of the category winners will be published online. Application deadline is August 1, 2016. Learn more about the SciLifeLab Prize>

QuadW Foundation‐AACR Fellowship for Clinical/Translational Sarcoma Research—Represents a joint effort to encourage and support a postdoctoral or clinical research fellow to conduct translational or clinical sarcoma research and to establish a successful career path in this field. The fellowship provides a one-year grant of $50,000 to support the salary and benefits of the fellow while working on a mentored sarcoma research project. Due date is July 26, 2016. Learn more about the AACR Fellowship >

AACR-Bristol-Myers Squibb Fellowships in Translational Immuno-oncology—Represents a joint effort to encourage and support postdoctoral or clinical research fellows to conduct innovative immuno-oncology research and to establish a successful career path in this field. Fellowships provide two-year grants of $110,000 ($55,000 per year) to support the salary and benefits of the fellow while working on a mentored immuno-oncology cancer research project. Application deadline is July 19, 2016. Learn more about the AACR-Bristol-Meyers Squibb Fellowship >

Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative: Bridge to Independence Award Request for Applications—Seeks to improve the understanding, diagnosis, and treatment of autism spectrum disorders by funding innovative research of the highest quality and relevance. Grants awarded are intended to invest in the next generation of top autism investigators by identifying talented early-career scientists interested in autism research and facilitating their transition to an independent research career. Applicants must hold a PhD, MD, or equivalent degree, and and be fewer than eight years since receiving their degree. Grantee will receive a commitment of $150,000 per year over three years. Letters of recommendation due August 1, 2016. Learn more about the Bridge to Independence Award >

Johnson & Johnson Innovation JLABS: QuickFire Challenges—The JLABS QuickFire Challenges are competitions designed to attract game-changing, early-stage innovation in the Therapeutics, Consumer, Health Technologies, and Med Device sectors. Winners will be awarded a variety of prizes (including cash and/or lab space), benefit from world-class lab facilities, be supported by an onsite team, and have access to a global network of industry experts and programming. Application deadline is August 31, 2016. Learn more about the QuickFire Challenges >

Burroughs Wellcome Fund: Career Awards at the Scientific Interface—Grants are intended to foster the early career development of researchers who have transitioned or are transitioning from undergraduate and/or graduate work in the physical/mathematical/computational sciences or engineering into postdoctoral work in the biological sciences, and who are dedicated to pursuing a career in academic research. Awards will be for $500,000 over five years. Pre-proposal deadline is September 6, 2016. Learn more about the Burroughs Wellcome Fund >

Human Frontier Science Program: Postdoctoral Fellowships—Postdoctoral fellowships encourage early-career scientists to broaden their research skills by moving into new areas of study while working in a new country. The HFSP fellowship program funds innovative, ground-breaking projects that have the potential to advance knowledge in the applicants’ field of study or open a new approach to a research problem. High-risk research is supported. Must hold a research doctorate or a doctoral-level degree comparable to a PhD with equivalent experience in basic research by the start of the fellowship. Three-year postdoctoral fellowships available. Fellowship initiation deadline is August 11, 2016. Learn more about the HSFP Fellowship Program >



Our biomedical informatics team is available to provide expert advice on patient cohort identification and electronic medical record data extractions. We also host and support several free self-service tools for research data capture and exploration of de-identified cohorts.

Learn more about Biomedical Informatics›

Second Boise State 2016 CAREER Award Looks at Common Knee Injury

Trevor Lujan, assistant professor of mechanical and biomedical engineering. Photo by Allison Corona

Trevor Lujan, assistant professor of mechanical and biomedical engineering, earned a five-year, $500,000 National Science Foundation CAREER Award to investigate why the meniscus fails so often and how the risk of failure is affected by age. Photo by Allison Corona


Despite the fact that it’s one of the most prevalent injuries in the U.S., very little is known about the cause of meniscal tears in the knee. We know even less about how to restore full function once this painful injury does occur.

Trevor Lujan, assistant professor of mechanical and biomedical engineering, earned a five-year, $500,000 National Science Foundation CAREER Award to investigate why the meniscus fails so often and how the risk of failure is affected by age. The award is the NSF’s most prestigious program supporting junior faculty who effectively integrate outstanding research and education within the context of their organization’s mission.

The meniscus is the crescent-shaped cartilage disc in your knee that cushions the femur and tibia. It helps disperse the weight of the body and reduce friction during movement.

There are more than a half million incidents of acute meniscus tears in the U.S. each year and in about 90 percent of cases, there is no effective treatment for full recovery.

The meniscus has a limited capacity to heal due to a lack of blood flow. Therefore, the most common procedure to fix a meniscus tear is to surgically remove the damaged part of the tissue. However, partial removal of the meniscus will cause knee instability and increase the risk of osteoarthritis.

“We know that meniscus failures are pervasive and debilitating, but we don’t understand the structural and physical mechanisms that underlie this common injury,” Lujan said. “Injury can clearly be caused by large forces, but what is the impact of repeated loads?”

This study will investigate the failure mechanisms of meniscus tears, focusing on the effect of repeated loads, known as fatigue. Clinical studies have shown that tears are not all caused by sudden trauma and may be associated with repeated impacts.

Lujan wants to learn why some people are more susceptible to injury than others. “If we can understand the structural and mechanical origins of failure, we can identify gait patterns and physical activities that increase failure risk,” he said.

The study takes into account the fibrous network of the meniscus, and how age-related changes to this fibrous network will affect the susceptibility of meniscus tears. Lujan will divide the study into two groups: those under age 50 and those over age 50. Samples from cadavers will be loaded for up to 100,000 cycles as researchers attempt to characterize failure behavior.

Lujan hopes not only to understand if aging increases the risk of fatigue injuries, but also to use computational models to predict and visualize tears. These models will be developed in a collaborative effort with Daniel Schwen at Idaho National Laboratory. By describing and predicting injury, these models could lead to improvements in the treatment and prevention of meniscus tears.

The NSF CAREER grant also includes an educational component. Lujan will create 3D computer models that high school teachers can use to help students visualize why knee injuries happen in terms of physics and mechanics.

“The CAREER grant is unique in that it provides funding to integrate research into education,” Lujan said. “I’m delighted to have the opportunity to tie my biomechanics research into high school education and to support visual learning in engineering.”

This is the latest in a growing number of NSF CAREER awards to Boise State faculty, including one announced earlier this year to Paul Simonds in physics.