Limited Submission Programs - Burroughs Wellcome Fund: Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease

Summary of Opportunity
Limited Submission Programs - Burroughs Wellcome Fund: Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease
OSP Deadline 10/08/14 by 4:30 p.m.
Funding Agency Deadline 11/03/14
Funding or Award Criteria

Program Description:

This award provides $500,000 over a period of five years to support accomplished investigators at the assistant professor level to study pathogenesis, with a focus on the interplay between human and microbial biology, shedding light on how human and microbial systems are affected by their encounters. The awards are intended to give recipients the freedom and flexibility to pursue new avenues of inquiry and higher-risk research projects that hold potential for significantly advancing the biochemical, pharmacological, immunological, and molecular biological understanding of how microbes and the human body interact.

This is a career development award for individual investigators and does not support collaborative teams.

The Investigators in the Pathogenesis of Infectious Disease program provides opportunities for assistant professors to bring multidisciplinary approaches to the study of human infectious diseases.

The goal of the program is to provide opportunities for accomplished investigators still early in their careers to study what happens at the points where human and microbial systems connect. The program supports research that sheds light on the fundamentals that affect the outcomes of this encounter: how colonization, infection, commensalism and other relationships play out at levels ranging from molecular interactions to systemic ones.

Researchers who start from the human host are encouraged to apply, as are those whose focus has been more often trained on microbes and macrobes that are sometimes pathogens.

Areas of particular interest include:

  • Cell/Pathogen interactions—studies of host responses at the cell surface, cell signaling in response to infection, microbial persistence in host cells, and other work.
  • Host/Pathogen interactions—studies of how host genetics influences resistance and susceptibility to infection, innate and adaptive immune responses to microbes, pathogen modulation of the immune system, and other work.
  • Novel routes to disease causation—studies of the role of infectious agents in the etiology of chronic, autoimmune, and immunologic diseases, and other work.
  • Candidates will generally have an M.D., D.V.M., or Ph.D. degree. (References to degrees include all types of medical and scientific doctoral level degrees.) BWF particularly encourages human health-relevant applications from veterinary scientists.
  • Candidates must have an established record of independent research and hold a tenure-track position as an assistant professor or equivalent at the time the application is submitted. Researchers recently appointed to a faculty position may not have a demonstrated track record sufficient to compete successfully for this award. Exceedingly few newly appointed assistant professors have sufficient independence. Most successful applicants are at or past their third complete year as an Assistant Professor.
  • Applications from non-tenure track investigators in tenure-offering, degree-granting departments or institutions will not be accepted.
  • Candidates must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or Canada at the time of application. Documentation of permanent resident status must be provided with the application. Permanent residents of the United States must provide a copy of their Permanent Resident Card (green card) or a copy of a current passport with an I-551 stamp. Permanent residents of Canada must provide a copy of their Landed Immigrant Status form. Persons who have applied for permanent resident status but have not received their government documentation by the time of application are not eligible.
  • Candidates at the appropriate career stage who have held or are currently holding a Burroughs Wellcome Fund award must contact BWF in advance to determine eligibility for this program.
The institution must submit a statement of nomination for each candidate. In this statement, BWF expects that the institution will tangibly demonstrate its commitment to support each candidate it nominates, including the protection of 75 percent of the grantee’s time for research.


Applicable Field(s)  
Number of Nominees Allowed

Two (2) nominations allowed from UT Austin*
                           *if a DVM is nominated, the institution may have three (3) nominations
                           *if a researcher is working in the following categories, the institution may have a single additional nomination for each category: pathogenic helminthes, mycology, or reproductive science

Required Internal Review Documents

Eligible Candidates should submit the following materials directly to by 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 8, 2014:    

  1. Two-page (maximum) description of the project: At the top of the page, Candidate must indicate if proposed work will involve pathogenic helminthes, mycology, or reproductive science
  2. The bio sketch/CV of the candidate


Nominee(s) Selected to Advance
  1. Ning Jiang, Cockrell School of Engineering
  2. Dawit Kidane-Mulat, College of Pharmacy
Posting Date 010/14/14