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UA-led research team awarded $50 million to solve plant biology's grand challenge questions
Date:1/30/2008

s and teachers. Science Foundation Arizonas investment will ensure that Arizona students are engaged from day one, says William C. Harris, president and CEO of Science Foundation Arizona.

BIO5 Director Vicki Chandler, also a principal investigator, explains, Because of the Internet and cyberinfrastructure, this is the first time in the history of science that everyone can access the same data at the same time using the same tools as the researchers generating that data. The exciting challenge is to produce tools that students and teachers can readily access.

Each proposed grand-challenge question will have practical applications and societal implications. For a field like plant biology, those implications are many and far-reaching. Human existence on this planet is absolutely dependent on plants, Chandler says. Our houses, our food, our atmosphere everything about the quality of human life depends on plants.

Welcome News to Arizona Leaders

The award one of the largest NSF grants ever to an Arizona entity came as welcome news to Arizonas leaders, who have been working to build the states bioscience capacities in research and economic development.

Todays announcement is proof that our investment in higher education is paying off, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano said. Arizonas future lies in innovation in areas like the biosciences, and we are tremendously proud that the National Science Foundation has chosen Arizona to chart a new course in plant science research.

This is the sort of big return on investment that the UA has promised the State of Arizona since the BIO5 Institute was opened and housed with critical state investments, said UA President Robert N. Shelton. BIO5 is ideally suited to house the iPlant Collaborative. Its work will span scientific disciplines and bring together plant biologists of all kinds to examine plant life across its entire continuum, from individual plant cells to entire ecosy
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Contact: Johnny Cruz
cruzj@email.arizona.edu
520-621-1879
University of Arizona
Source:Eurekalert

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