The existing University of Florida Center for Smell and Taste (UFCST) will provide the basis for a Biomedical Research Core Center for Smell and Taste at the University of Florida (Core Center). The existing research infrastructure and environment of the UFCST, including its human resources, will be incorporated into the Core Center. In addition to its inherent research infrastructure, the Core Center has access to the vast research infrastructure of the University of Florida. The proposal is targeted at hiring a new faculty member, Dr. Cedrick Dotson, whose qualifications will strengthen the scientific capacity of the Core Center in both clinical and animal research. The Core Center will contribute to Dr. Dotson's academic development by fostering strong links across the University of Florida. Dr. Dotson will receive a tenure track faculty position in the Department of Neuroscience. The Chairperson of the Department will be responsible for mentoring and monitoring the academic progress of Dr. Dotson with the help of the Director of the Core Center. Award of the P30 will be instrumental in leveraging this position from the university, which like many public universities is undergoing significant, permanent cuts in State funding that have curtailed new hiring. The ability of the P30 to 'bridge'the position for two years until the current financial crisis is likely to abate will be instrumental in the ability to hire Dr. Dotson. The Director of the Core Center will be responsible for evaluating the overall success of the P30 and reporting progress to the NIDCD.
The senses of smell and taste play an increasingly appreciated role in our general quality of life as well as in diseases of growing importance such as dementia, diabetes, and obesity. This proposal reflects this awareness by proposing to establish a Biomedical Research Core Center for Smell and Taste around the existing University of Florida Center for Smell and Taste to study chemosensory deficits and their genetic basis in humans and animals.
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