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UTSA announces funding for new faculty research

San Antonio In February 2009, the Office of the Vice President of Research at UTSA announced it would offer approximately $242,000 through its Collaborative Research Seed Grant Program (CRSGP) and its Tenure-track Research Award Competition (TRAC). The programs help UTSA faculty establish new, innovative, collaborative and multidisciplinary research programs in one or more of UTSA's five strategic areas of excellence: health, security, energy and the environment, human and social development, and sustainability.

"Normally, we expect to receive around 40-50 funding proposals," said Jeffrey Kantor, UTSA's senior associate vice president for research development. "The submissions are well-written and there is keen attention to detail. Our faculty proposed many unique collaborations."

The following proposals, contingent upon this next year's funding, will receive seed grant money:

Collaborative Research Seed Grant Recipients
(*Projects will receive $30,000 in funding. **Project will receive $25,000 in funding.)

Evaluation of borrelicidal small molecule for control of Lyme disease*
PI: Janakiram Seshu, Assistant Professor of Microbiology (COS)
Co-PI: Felix D. Guerrero, Research Physiologist (U.S. Department of Agriculture)
Co-PI: Andrew Y. Li, Research Entomologist (U.S. Department of Agriculture)

Preliminary Research for the Development of the Lampshade Compton Camera*
PI: Bruce Douglas Smith, Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering (COE)
Co-PI: Thomas H. Prettyman, Senior Scientist (Planetary Science Institute)

Lipid-Based Biofuels Using Algal Feedstock Platforms*
Kyle E. Murray, Assistant Professor, Geological Sciences (COS) and Assistant Director for Undergraduate Research Development (Honors College)
Co-PI: Frank Healy, Assistant Professor of Biology (Trinity University)

Development of Novel Biomedical Probes Incorporating Rare-Earth Nanocrystals**
PI: Dhiraj K. Sardar, Ashbel Smith Professorship (COS)
Co-PI: Andrew T. Tsin, Professor of Biochemistry and Physiology (COS)

Tenure-Track Research Award Recipients
(All projects will receive $22,000 in funding.)

The Evolution of Terrace Farming in Mountainous Environments: Archaeology, Historical Ecology and Ethnography in the Eastern Andes
PI: Sonia Alconini, Assistant Professor, Anthropology (COLFA)

Synergistic effects of chemicals released from mountain cedar and global warming on native grasses and plant community structure
PI: Janis K. Bush, Assistant Professor, Geological Sciences (COS)

Toward a general understanding of sediment deposition on river floodplains
PI: Judith K. Haschenburger, Assistant Professor, Geological Sciences (COS)

Breastfeeding, Poverty, Segregation, and Childhood Asthma: A Population Based Study of Individual-and Contextual-Level Correlates
PI: Patrice Johnelle Sparks, Assistant Professor, Demography and Organization Studies (COPP)

How does aging affect biochemical neuronal function?
PI: Fidel Santamaria, Assistant Professor of Computation and Neural Systems (COS)

Funds awarded through the CRSGP and TRAC programs will be disbursed by Sep. 1, 2009 and must be expended by Aug. 31, 2010.


Contact: Christi Fish
University of Texas at San Antonio

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