We propose to establish a Center for Systems Biology to promote the application of state of the art high- throughput technologies and further a multidisciplinary, systems approach to biomedical research at the University of Arizona. The existing strengths of the institution in the use of model organisms and genetic analysis forms a strong base on which to expand the investigation of fundamental questions in biology and medicine to incorporate a systems approach. This proposal focuses on the recruitment of key junior faculty who will provide expertise in systems biology, computational biology and bioinformatics to foster collaborative multidisciplinary research. This Center will be based in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) in the College of Science and will interface with the Arizona Cancer Center in the College of Medicine, the iPlant Consortium in the College of Agriculture, and the Bio5 Institute. MCB has a tradition of collaborative research and successful recruitment of faculty who establish strong ties across campus. Furthermore, we have a strong record in the recruitment and retention of women faculty and we are committed to building a diverse faculty. Given the large Hispanic and Native American populations in Arizona, we are in a strategic position to build our minority faculty. We propose the following Specific Aims: 1. Recruitment: We propose the recruitment of two new faculty members who training and experience in the broad areas of systems biology, computational biology, bioinformatics, and/or 'omics approaches to biomedical research (e.g., genomics, proteomics, microarray analysis). We propose to place special emphasis on the recruitment of women and underrepresented minorities. 2.
The new recruit will be assigned a mentoring committee that will provide advice and support concerning lab set-up, staff hiring, grant writing, tenure expectations, and any other assistance needed. 3. Pilot Projects: To quickly integrate the new faculty into the UA multidisciplinary scientific community, we propose a pilot project program in which collaborative projects involving the new investigator will be solicited from the broad scientific community on campus.
Normal development and biological homeostasis is regulated by complex networks of gene expression and interaction of biological macromolecules;disruption of these networks leads to developmental abnormalities and disease. This Centerfor Systems Biology will promote understanding of these networks with the ultimate goal of predicting, detecting, and preventing human disease.
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