The Redox Biology Center (RBC), established in 2002 with IDeA program funds as an interdisciplinary partnership between University of Nebraska-Lincoln and University of Nebraska Medical Center scientists, is building a nationally visible and internationally recognized program of excellence in redox biology that spansbasic and applied sciences. The Center's objectives are to enhance Nebraska's biomedical research capacity by creating a strategically linked infrastructure of strong research programs in redox biology and to mentor a cadre of talented junior faculty to independent success. In the four years since its inception, the Center has developed a national presence in redox biology and completed its original objectives. The RBC has changed the biomedical research landscape in Nebraska, energizing a shift in the research culture toward interdisciplinary, thematic, collaborative research (e.g., a new area of study - redox neuroimmunology - has resulted from Center collaborations) and has garnered exceptional institutional support as is evidenced by an institution-wide Program of Excellence award in 2006. This competitive continuation proposal details our plan to continue building the capacity needed to ensure national prominence and international recognition.
The specific aims that will drive the Center over the next five years are to: 1) maintain and broaden (by inclusion of a Co-Director) the RBC's administrative core of personnel and programs that support and enhance the Center's research; 2) develop existing faculty through the support of five thematically-linked primary research projects, a strong mentoring program for junior investigators, and support of two essential core facilities and pilot research projects; 3) increase research capacity through targeted recruitment of five researchers in key areas of redox biology; and 4) graduate from IDeA program funding as a self-sustainable center of research excellence in redox biology through the development of program projects and individual and collaborative research grants. The pioneering consolidation of redox-linked programs at Nebraska by the RBC represents a unique focal expertise that is, to our knowledge, not presently available elsewhere in the country. The Center's focus on redox biology is supported by a growing recognition in the life sciences community of the centrality of redox reactions in both physiological and pathological processes. Elucidation of redox-linked mechanisms in diseases ranging from cataracts to cancers and neurodegeneration by RBC members hold promise for developing therapeutic strategies for intervention. ? ? ?
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