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NIGMS to Fund Multidisciplinary Macromolecular Collaborations

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institute of General Medical Sciences plans to commit up to $4.7 million next year to fund interdisciplinary research projects that will advance studies of macromolecular interactions and how they function in living cells.

These projects, which may use unconventional research strategies, will include collaborative studies that harness partners' complementary capabilities in genetics, biochemistry, and pharmacology, among others, and use mass spectrometry and high-throughput screening technologies, among others.

Under one funding opportunity announcement, this NIGMS program will provide $3.2 million in 2013 to fund research project (R01) grants to support a broad range of studies of macromolecular interactions and their relationships to cellular functions.

Under a specialized center (U54) grant, NIGMS plans to use $1.5 million to establish interdisciplinary collaborative research networks that advance the goals of the project and integrate additional research strategies into the NIGMS research base of labs that specialize in macromolecular functioning.

These research projects can pursue a broad range of studies, including various screening research. These screening studies can be small or large in scale, in vivo or ex vivo, and they may use genomic, proteomic, genetic, chemical, and other approaches and methods.

Macromolecular interactions pose challenges to researchers who are trying to use new advances in genomics, biochemistry, proteomics, and a range of other areas to understand whole cell organization and functioning, according to NIGMS, and there is a need to unite some of these new approaches and methods in order to understand cellular function.

One of the priorities of this grant program is to advance the integration of these technologies and methods by involving researchers who specialize in analysis of function in living systems in multidisciplinary applications of new technologies and research strategies, NIGMS said.