Research Alert | May 31, 2012

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Important Research News

Financial Conflict of Interest Policy Change Forthcoming

The University of Texas at Austin is in the process of finalizing a revised Objectivity in Research policy that must be implemented by Aug. 24, 2012. The new policy will incorporate changes to meet updated federal requirements governing disclosure and reporting of Financial Conflicts of Interest and will affect all UT Austin researchers.

The university’s revised policy requiring disclosure of financial interests applies to all individuals who are involved in the design, conduct or reporting of research. There are additional disclosure requirements for researchers funded by the Public Health Service (PHS) and staff working on PHS-funded studies.


For information on the new PHS policy, see the list of Frequently Asked Questions at the National Institutes of Health website. At the university, the Office of Research Support is providing updates on its Conflict of Interest page. The webpage will soon contain links to a required training module, a web-based financial interest disclosure form and information on face-to-face training that will be offered.

Future announcements pertaining to the policy and procedure change will be disseminated through Deans, Associate Deans for Research, Directors and Chairs; announced in the Research Alert; communicated via the Principal Investigator Network and Research Administrator Network listservs; and will be posted on the Conflict of Interest webpage of the ORS and the Resources for Researchers webpage of the Office of the Vice President for Research.

Research Opportunities

Important University Research Deadlines

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

The University of Texas at Austin Stimulus Package Web page is online.

Funding Sources

Department of Commerce

Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge
See more about this in the News and Information section.
Deadline: July 9, 2012

Department of Defense

DOD logo

Biologically-derived Medicines on Demand
Deadline: June 12, 2012

Use of Remote and In-Situ Measurements to Improve Understanding of the Basic Physics of the Ionosphere
Deadline: June 23, 2012

FY12 Defense Medical Research and Development Program
Deep Exploration and Filtering of Text
Deadline: Aug. 20, 2012

Department of Energy

Advanced Computational and Modeling Research for the Electric Power System
Deadline: July 5, 2012

Innovative Biosynthetic Pathways to Advanced Biofuels
Deadline: July 10, 2012

Partnership Opportunity for Guided Bullet Technology Development
Deadline: July 27, 2012


Science Investigations as Members of the Euclid Consortium and Euclid Science Team
Deadlines: Notice of Intent, June 15, 2012; Proposal, Aug. 31, 2012

National Institutes of Health

Research Education Program for Laboratory Animal Medicine Veterinarians
Deadline: July 18, 2012

Developmental Pharmacology
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Sept. 16, 2012; Application, Oct. 16, 2012

NIDCD Research On Hearing Health Care
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Jan. 28, 2013; Application, Feb. 28, 2013


National Science Foundation

David Laude Joint DMS/NIGMS Initiative to Support Research at the Interface of the Biological and Mathematical Sciences
Deadline: Sept. 17, 2012


Advancing Informal STEM Learning
Deadlines: Preliminary Proposal, Aug. 14, 2012; Proposal, Jan. 14, 2013

Solar, Heliospheric, and INterplanetary Environment
Deadline: Aug. 15, 2012

Biological Anthropology
Deadline: Aug. 20, 2012

Arts, Humanities and Culture

National Endowment for the Humanities
America's Historical and Cultural Organizations: Planning Grants
Deadline: Aug. 15, 2012

Other Funding Opportunities

American Diabetes Association
Core Development Awards

American Association for Cancer Research
Fight Colorectal Cancer-AACR Career Development Award, in memory of Lisa Dubow
Deadline: June 18, 2012

Research Prizes and Honors

[Have you or a colleague won a research-related prize or honor? Let the Research Alert know.]

Psychology Faculty Member Receives Neuroscience Award

Jonathan Pillow The McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience has named six researchers, including Dr. Jonathan Pillow, to receive the 2012 McKnight Scholar Award. These awards, in the amount of $75,000 per year for three years, are granted to young scientists who are in the early stages of establishing their own independent laboratories and research careers and who have demonstrated a commitment to neuroscience.

News and Information

Agencies Team Up for $26 Million Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge

The Obama Administration announced a $26 million Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, a partnership among 14 federal agencies. The initiative is to assist the development and implementation of regionally-driven economic development strategies that support advanced manufacturing and cluster development.

The investments will accelerate innovation-fueled job creation and economic prosperity through public-private partnerships, and serve as a catalyst for leveraging private capital, assisting entrepreneurial development in disadvantaged communities and promoting cluster-based development in advanced manufacturing.

Quoted-UT Researchers in the News

Los Angeles Times
May 28, 2012
HEADLINE: Study traces origins of monogamous coupling

David Buss (David Buss, professor in the Department of Psychology, turns on the caution light about a new study on early mating strategies in a comment to the Los Angeles Times.)

But David Buss, an evolutionary psychologist at the University of Texas at Austin and author of "The Evolution of Desire: Strategies of Human Mating," said that although the paper offered a "plausible" explanation for what may have jump-started monogamy, it hugely simplified human sexual behavior.

Human mating behaviors, for men and women, are quite varied, he said — including not just committed, long-term pairing but a smorgasbord of other strategies such as casual sex, serial monogamy, having a long-term mate with sexual partners on the side, and combinations thereof.

Research Project

A Role for the Preoptic Area in Modulating Cocaine Reward

Juan DominguezRESEARCHER: Juan Dominguez, assistant professor, Department of Psychology, principal investigator
AGENCY: National Institute on Drug Abuse
AMOUNT: $299,991

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), in 2009 there were 1.6 million current cocaine users aged 12 or older, comprising 0.7 percent of the nation's population. This is a dangerous epidemic because cocaine use can produce addiction and other adverse health consequences. As evidence of the addictive consequences of cocaine use, according to the NSDUH, nearly 1.1 million Americans met the DSM-IV criteria for dependence or abuse of cocaine in 2009. Additional data also indicate that 448,481 of the total 1,449,154 visits to emergency rooms for drug abuse involved cocaine, highlighting the adverse health consequences of cocaine use.

Studies presented in this proposal will examine a region of the brain that has received little attention as a potential modulator of cocaine activity. The medial preoptic area of the hypothalamus is important for the integration of endocrine stimulation into the nervous system. Since gonadal hormones modulate rewarding and gender-sensitive responses to cocaine, the preclinical findings generated upon completion of the planned experiments will help us better understand the neurochemical, neuroendocrine, and gender-relevant substrates regulating cocaine abuse.

The successful completion of the proposed aims will facilitate the development of prevention and treatment strategies for addiction, especially if these strategies involve an endocrine component. Furthermore, because pharmacological and behavioral treatments affect men and women differently, then a better understanding of how hormones impact cocaine-induced brain activity, while developing future treatment, should optimize the effectiveness of those treatment strategies.

The Research Alert is an electronic publication from the Office of the Vice President for Research at The University of Texas at Austin. It includes news of research honors and awards, news of research programs and deadlines, researchers quoted in news media, a listing of funding opportunities and a look at a current research project. It is available by e-mail and on the Web.

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