This subproject is one of many research subprojects utilizing the resources provided by a Center grant funded by NIH/NCRR. Primary support for the subproject and the subproject's principal investigator may have been provided by other sources, including other NIH sources. The Total Cost listed for the subproject likely represents the estimated amount of Center infrastructure utilized by the subproject, not direct funding provided by the NCRR grant to the subproject or subproject staff. We propose continuing support for our multi-user research facility specializing in the analysis of biomolecules, the Biomolecule Analysis Core Facility (BACF). The BACF houses cutting-edge equipment, such as mass spectrometers, nanoLC systems, surface plasmon resonance (BIACORE), HPLC systems, spectrophotometers, fluorometer and luminometer, ultracentrifuges, preparative centrifuges, and several other shared instruments. Numerous other resources are available for documentation and analysis of experimental data collected using these instruments. The long-term objective of this Core is to provide the broadest possible group of users with access to well-maintained, cutting-edge equipment for biomolecule analysis. The facility is now housed in the new Bioscience Building, in an area of 1,650 sq feet. The BACF is currently used by 7 UTEP departments and the School of Public Health Houston at El Paso, representing 50 research groups, 40 faculty members, 18 research assistants (staff), 16 post-docs, 48 PhD students, 32 MS students, and 128 undergraduate students. The Core is currently accessed in average 1,000 times per month (approx. 12,000 per year), by 249 individual users. The Core is staffed by a full-time technician (coordinator), who is responsible for routine maintenance scheduling preventive maintenance by factory technicians and engineers, user orientation and assistance, as well as account and inventory maintenance. Partial salary will be provided to the core director for overseeing these activities.
Aimi ng at a self-sustaining maintenance of the facility, we plan to offer new core services, such as peptide sequencing/proteomic analysis by LC-MS/MS, to UTEP/BBRC and external users. For this, here we request funds for hiring one full-time research associate or technician, at PhD level, to oversee the mass spectrometry and proteomic analysis activities. To successfully achieve our objectives, three specific aims are proposed:
Specific Aim #1 : Continue to provide BBRC researchers and external users access to well-maintained, state-of-the-art equipment.
Specific Aim #2 : Continue to provide technical instructional support in the use of Core equipment.
Specific Aim # 3: To provide services aiming at a self-sustaining maintenance of the Core.
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