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Small Business Grants to Fund Proteomics Tools

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Institutes of Health wants to spur development of new proteomics and glycomics technologies and has started a program to award small businesses grants for new tools that involve biology, analytical chemistry, and informatics.

The field of proteomics is expanding and evolving rapidly, and new technologies are needed to meet the needs of the academic and commercial research and clinical proteomics fields, NIH said in a request for proposals. These grants are aimed at funding small firms interested in or involved in developing new tools in these areas.

Funded through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, these grants from the National Center for Research Resources and other NIH institutes will provide up to $350,000 for Phase I and $600,000 for Phase II grants.

The SBIR and Small Business Technology Transfer grants will fund proteomics and glycomics projects in a range of specific areas including robotics; sample preparation; mass spectrometry; gel and array imaging; quantitation; automated data acquisition, and others.

"The application of proteomics tools in the clinical setting lags far behind their use in basic science and drug discovery," NIH stated in the funding announcement. "Though this is not due solely to technological constraints, the unique challenges associated with development of simple, rapid, and robust technologies for the clinic demand a somewhat different perspective than might be taken in consideration of a purely research-driven project."

NIH said that it has not set a number for how many of these grants it will award.

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