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NIH to Award $7M for Systems Biology Centers in 2010

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institutes of Health will grant up to $7 million next year to establish two Centers of Excellence in Systems Biology.

The National Institute of General Medical Sciences program will create two centers to promote systems biology research, training, and outreach, according to a program announcement issued this week.

NIGMS will use the Specialized Center grant mechanism to fund “institutional development of pioneering research, research training, and outreach programs in this emerging area and therefore stimulate the field as a whole,” NIH said.

The research programs should fall within the NIGMS mission areas, including, but not limited to:

• Studies of how genetic variation contributes to the understanding of complex phenotypes and their evolutionary and environmental context;
• The design and construction of synthetic biological systems to better understand the underlying organizational principles of biological networks, and to obtain new features and utilities relevant to biomedicine;
• Development of multi-scale modeling approaches to understanding basic physiological processes;
• The organization, interaction, and dynamics of cellular network systems (e.g., signaling, genetic interactions, metabolic networks, etc);
• Fundamental mechanisms of cellular processes, such as transcriptional and translational regulation, cell cycle control, apoptosis, cell differentiation, cell division, cell migration, intracellular transport, membrane and organelle biogenesis, and others.

The NIGMS National Centers for Systems Biology program will provide direct costs of up to $2 million per year over a five year period, NIH said.