In 1979, a NEI Core Grant was awarded to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Over the next 30 years, the institution's continued commitment to growth resulted in a remarkable expansion in vision research at UAB. Participants in the Core Grant have increased from thirteen in two departments to twenty-nine representing eight departments, and there has been a concomitant increase in extramural funding. Annually, NEI funding to Core Grant participants exceeds $3 million, not including institutional awards. Total extramural funding for vision-related research at UAB has grown from just over $6 million in 1998 to $15 million in 2008. A major research focus of the group is visual neuroscience, with seventeen of the participants actively involved in anatomical, biochemical, physiological, and psychophysical studies of the retina and central visual pathways. Other areas of research include myopia, biochemistry of the lens and cornea, and vitreous biochemistry. This application requests funds to continue to provide services and facilities to UAB Core Grant participants through the Electronics, Machine Shop, Computer and Molecular and Cellular Analysis modules. These modules provide easily accessible technical facilities and the expertise to use them in dedicated spaces designed specifically for each purpose. The Electronics Module is staffed by an Electronics Engineer and includes all of the equipment required to design and build new electronic apparatus, and to provide repair and maintenance services. The Computer Module provides access to high-end computers and peripherals, custom programming capability, and assistance with office and lab computers and software. A computer programmer is available for systems administration, and networking. The Machine Shop is fully equipped with a lathe, milling machine and other machine tools, and is staffed by a Tool and Die Maker who designs and fabricates new mechanical devices and can repair or maintain mechanical equipment. The Molecular and Cellular Analysis Core provides access to major instrumentation for DNA, RNA and protein studies. A PhD level Research Associate provides expertise and training in all of these areas. In addition, equipment and expertise for tissue analyses including routine tissue processing, histological stains, immunohistochemical studies, and in situ hybridization is available. A part time histological technician provides consultation for experimental design, technical expertise, and training of laboratory personnel.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
Center Core Grants (P30)
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Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZEY1-VSN (08))
Program Officer
Liberman, Ellen S
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University of Alabama Birmingham
Schools of Optometry/Ophthalmol
United States
Zip Code
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