The University of Puerto Rico (UPR) Medical Sciences Campus proposes to establish a COBRE Center that will significantly strengthen the research infrastructure of the institution and t hat will impact biomedical investigation throughout the island.
The specific aims of this COBRE Center for Neuroplasticity at the University of Puerto Rico are to: 1) Foster development of junior investigators into competitive researchers working on projects with direct biomedical significance. An intensive mentoring program will be implemented with the goal of creating a "culture of research" comparable to that of major research-intensive universities. 2) Provide a Neuroimaging and Electrophysiology Facility (NIEF) that will offer state-of-the-art instrumentation, training, and expertise to the neuroscience community of Puerto Rico. The NIEF will be located in the Institute of Neurobiology, but will incorporate ultra high-end instrumentation in the new Biomolecular Sciences Building (BSB) after the COBRE has become well-established at the Institute;3) Partner with IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) entities in Puerto Rico;4) Support programmatic activities that increase interdisciplinary collaborations at the basic research level. The major strengths of the proposed COBRE include: 1) the PI, who is both an accomplished researcher with extensive funding and advisory activities within the NIH, and an experienced administrator with a history of successful initiation of research and training programs;2) the team of young, aggressive and highly committed scientists;3) enhanced mentorship possibilities provided by the current level of intellectual and scientific accomplishment present at the Institute of Neurobiology;3) rational planning for the future by deployment of the new BSB as a centralized hub for integrated and collaborative research in the future of the COBRE Center for Neuroplasticity;4) the full commitment of the UPR Administration toward assuring the stated goals of the project. This UPR COBRE Center should define pathways and benchmarks for basic and translational research across the UPR system for the next decades.

Public Health Relevance

This project will establish a multidisciplinary COBRE Center for Neuroplasticity, addressing important neurological and behavioral disorders such as spinal cord injury, alcoholism, and the genetic basis of neuroadaptation to stress. This platform will serve as a model for transforming the research enterprise in Puerto Rico into a more resource-effective and collaborative environment aligned with the NIH Roadmap.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Type
Exploratory Grants (P20)
Project #
5P20GM103642-02
Application #
8687686
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZGM1-TWD-B)
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
2014-07-01
Budget End
2015-06-30
Support Year
2
Fiscal Year
2014
Total Cost
$263,891
Indirect Cost
$67,963
Name
University of Puerto Rico Med Sciences
Department
Type
DUNS #
948108063
City
San Juan
State
PR
Country
United States
Zip Code
00936