Welcome to the biweekly electronic newsletter from Stanford Bio-X for members of the Bio-X Corporate Forum. Please contact us if you would like to be added or removed from this distribution list, or if you have any questions about Stanford Bio-X or Stanford University.
SEED GRANTS FOR SUCCESS - Stanford Bio-X Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program (IIP)
The Bio-X Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program represents a key Stanford Initiative to address challenges in human health. The IIP awards approximately $3 million every other year in the form of two-year grants averaging about $150,000 each. From its inception in 2000 through the fifth round in 2010, the program has provided critical early-stage funding to 114 different interdisciplinary projects, involving collaborations from over 300 faculty members, and creating over 450 teams from five different Stanford schools. From just the first 5 rounds, the IIP awards have resulted in a 10-fold-plus return on investment, as well as hundreds of publications, dozens of patents filed, and most importantly, the acceleration of scientific discovery and innovation.
In 2012, Stanford Bio-X selected 23 new seed grant projects as the winners of the 6th round. Please go here to view the list of awardees, along with the titles of their projects and the abstracts of the research. Competition was intense as the awardees were chosen from 118 Letters of Intent (LOIs). Selection criteria included innovation, high-reward, and interdisciplinary collaboration. (To view the 114 other IIP projects that have been funded from the first 5 rounds, please click here.) In addition, SANOFI has also funded 4 new Bio-X IIP Seed Grant projects from round 6!
SAVE THE DATE: next Monday, August 26, 2013, Bio-X will be having its second annual IIP Symposium of the year at the Clark Center. Please see below in the "EVENTS" section for the oral presentation agenda.
The last IIP Symposium was help on February 25, 2013. It was attended by over 150 people, and the symposium included 8 podium presentations and 116 poster presentations. The podium talks represented research from a wide array of fields (such as gene delivery to interactive gaming in biology to tele-robotic systems to stem cells to hedgehog signal transductions and more), with each project exemplifying the Stanford Bio-X mission of crossing boundaries to bring about interdisciplinary research and solutions in the field of life bioscience. The talks for this symposium are posted here. To view previously recorded talks, please go here.
We are cultivating and are highly successful in building meaningful collaborations with numerous corporate colleagues. New collaborations through our seed grant projects are highly encouraged. To learn about how to get involved, please contact Dr. Hanwei Li or Dr. Heideh Fattaey.
Every year, graduate students and postdoctoral scholars of Bio-X affiliated faculty are highly encouraged to apply for the Bio-X Fellowships, which are awarded to research projects that are interdisciplinary and utilize the technologies of different fields to solve different biological questions. Students are encouraged to work collaboratively with professors of different departments, thus creating cross-disciplinary relationships among the different Stanford schools. Our fellows have conducted exciting research, resulting in publications in high-impact journals and have been offered excellent positions in industry and academia. To date, Stanford Bio-X has a total of 152 Fellows.
On June 26th, Bio-X held its annual Bio-X Fellows Symposium, where there were four 15-minute oral presentations followed by one-minute spiels from current fellows. The 25 newest fellows selected this year were also announced, and about 100 attendees came to the symposium. Please click on the "Bio-X Fellows Symposium" link above for the agenda and titles of the talks, and on the icon of the brochure above for the updated and latest Bio-X Fellowships brochure.
To view the numerous projects that have been awarded over the years, please click here.
BIO-X UNDERGRADUATE SUMMER RESEARCH PROGRAM
The Bio-X Undergraduate Summer Research Program supports undergraduate research training through an award designed to support interdisciplinary undergraduate summer research projects. The program is an invaluable opportunity for students to conduct hands-on research, learn how to carry out experiments in the laboratory, and develop the skills to read and analyze scientific literature.
This program is eligible to Stanford students who want to work in the labs of Bio-X affiliated faculty. To date, 176 students have been awarded the opportunity to participate in the Bio-X Undergraduate Summer Research Program. This summer is Stanford Bio-X's 8th round of USRP.
Participating undergraduates are also required to present poster presentations on the research that they've conducted during the program. Please click here for title lists of past posters that our undergraduates have presented.
Many fruitful collaborations and relationships have been established with industry through fellowships. Please contact Dr. Hanwei Li or Dr. Heideh Fattaey if you'd like to learn more about how to get involved with these fellowship programs.
Scientists develop ‘molecular flashlight’ that illuminates brain tumors in mice
Bio-X Affiliated Faculty Jennifer Cochran and Matt Scott
In a breakthrough that could have wide-ranging applications in molecular medicine, Stanford University researchers have created a bioengineered peptide that enables imaging of medulloblastomas, among the most devastating of malignant childhood brain tumors, in lab mice. The researchers altered the amino acid sequence of a cystine knot peptide — or knottin — derived from the seeds of the squirting cucumber, a plant native to Europe, North Africa and parts of Asia. Peptides are short chains of amino acids that are integral to cellular processes; knottin peptides are notable for their stability and resistance to breakdown. The team used their invention as a “molecular flashlight” to distinguish tumors from surrounding healthy tissue. After injecting their bioengineered knottin into the bloodstreams of mice with medulloblastomas, the researchers found that the peptide stuck tightly to the tumors and could be detected using a high-sensitivity digital camera. The findings are described in a study published online Aug. 12 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Stanford bioengineering lab builds molecular ‘switch’ to reprogram control pathways in cells
Bio-X Affiliated Faculty Christina Smolke
A Stanford bioengineering lab has developed a technology that can tweak the control systems that regulate the inner workings of cells, pointing the way toward future medical interventions that could switch off diseased states or turn on healthy processes. The research paper being published [August 15] by Science Express describes a biological tool that principal author Christina Smolke, PhD, associate professor of bioengineering, has dubbed a molecular network diverter. This molecular diverter utilizes the concerted action of three biological sub-systems to redirect signaling pathways – complex networks of molecular interactions that orchestrate the cellular machinery. The experiments described by Smolke and her collaborators, Kate Galloway, PhD, California Institute of Technology, and Elisa Franco, PhD, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at University of California, Riverside, were performed on yeast cells. But the principles and practices embodied in the molecular network diverter apply to signaling pathways that control the development, reproduction and death of all cells. When these signaling pathways go awry in humans, for instance, such malfunctions can cause many types of cancer as well as other diseases. “We’re doing this in yeast, but there’s a lot of conservation (similarity) of these pathways in higher organisms,” Smolke said. “The next step, now that we’ve shown this in simpler systems, is to take this technology into human cell cultures.”
Study identifies new culprit that may make aging brains susceptible to neurodegenerative diseases
Bio-X Affiliated Faculty Ben Barres
The steady accumulation of a protein in healthy, aging brains may explain seniors’ vulnerability to neurodegenerative disorders, a new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine reports. The study’s unexpected findings could fundamentally change the way scientists think about neurodegenerative disease. The pharmaceutical industry has spent billions of dollars on futile clinical trials directed at treating Alzheimer’s disease by ridding brains of a substance called amyloid plaque. But the new findings have identified another mechanism, involving an entirely different substance, that may lie at the root not only of Alzheimer’s but of many other neurodegenerative disorders — and, perhaps, even the more subtle decline that accompanies normal aging. The study, published Aug. 14 in the Journal of Neuroscience, reveals that with advancing age, a protein called C1q, well-known as a key initiator of immune response, increasingly lodges at contact points connecting nerve cells in the brain to one another. Elevated C1q concentrations at these contact points, or synapses, may render them prone to catastrophic destruction by brain-dwelling immune cells, triggered when a catalytic event such as brain injury, systemic infection or a series of small strokes unleashes a second set of substances on the synapses. “No other protein has ever been shown to increase nearly so profoundly with normal brain aging,” said Ben Barres, MD, PhD, professor and chair of neurobiology and senior author of the study. Examinations of mouse and human brain tissue showed as much as a 300-fold age-related buildup of C1q.
Autistic kids who best peers at math show different brain organization, study shows
Bio-X Affiliated Faculty Vinod Menon
Children with autism and average IQs consistently demonstrated superior math skills compared with nonautistic children in the same IQ range, according to a study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. “There appears to be a unique pattern of brain organization that underlies superior problem-solving abilities in children with autism,” said Vinod Menon, PhD, professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and a member of the Child Health Research Institute at Packard Children's. The autistic children’s enhanced math abilities were tied to patterns of activation in a particular area of their brains — an area normally associated with recognizing faces and visual objects. Menon is senior author of the study, published online Aug. 17 in Biological Psychiatry. Postdoctoral scholar Teresa luculano, PhD, is the lead author.
|Bio-X Interdisciplinary Initiatives Symposium
Monday August 26, 2013
Clark Center Auditorium
Bio-X Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program grant awardees will give fifteen-minute presentations at the symposium. A poster session will be held during a post symposium reception, where students involved in interdisciplinary research will present their work.
Matrix-Induced Alignment: Effects on Endothelial Biology
Gerald Fuller (Chemical Engineering)
John Cooke (Cardiovascular Medicine)
Bioactive and Biodegradable Drug Delivery Depot for Enhancing Tissue Regeneration
Fan Yang (Bioengineering)
Stuart Goodman (Orthopaedic Surgery)
Sandip Biswal (Radiology)
PET-CT Evaluation of NK1 Receptor Using [18F]SPA-RQ in Gastroparesis
Sandip Biswal (Radiology)
Pankaj Jay Pasricha (Gastroenterology and Hepatology)
Frederick T. Chin (Radiology)
Magnetic Nanosensors for the Validation of Protein Biomarkers of Inflammatory Neonatal Disease
Karl Sylvester (Surgery)
Shan Wang (Materials Science and Engineering)
Fluorescent Biosensors: Advanced Tools for Imaging Plant-Pathogen Rivalry for Carbon
Wolf B. Frommer (Biology)
Virginia Walbot (Biology)
Alexander Dunn (Chemical Engineering)
Optical Imaging with Radiation-Activatable Phosphor Nanoparticles for Real-Time Monitoring of Axon Transport Activities
Yanmin Yang (Neurology)
Lei Xing (Radiation Oncology)
Lineage Tracking and the Roots of Adaptive Evolution
Daniel Fisher (Applied Physics)
Gavin Sherlock (Genetics)
Characterizing the Influence of Optogenetically Stimulated Dopamine Release on FMRI Signal in Awake Rats
Brian Knutson (Psychology)
Karl Deisseroth (Bioengineering)
Reception and poster session (Clark Courtyard)
|Bio-X Seed Grants
The Stanford Bio-X Interdisciplinary Initiatives Program (IIP) provides seed funding for high-risk, high-reward, collaborative projects across the university, and have been highly successful in fostering transformative research.
|Office of Technology and Licensing "Techfinder"
Search the OTL Technology Portal to find technologies available for licensing from Stanford.
|Stanford Center for Professional Development
- Take advantage of your FREE membership!
- Take online graduate courses in engineering, leadership and management, bioscience, and more.
- Register for free webinars and seminars, and gets discounts on courses.
|Stanford Biodesign Video Tutorials on how FDA approves medical devices
A series of video briefs recently produced by the Stanford Biodesign Program teaches innovators how to get a medical device approved for use in the United States. This free, online library of 60 videos provides detailed information on the Food and Drug Administration regulatory process, short case studies and advice on interacting with the FDA.
To learn more about Stanford Bio-X or Stanford University, please contact Dr. Hanwei Li, the Bio-X Corporate Forum Liaison, at 650-725-1523 or email@example.com, or Dr. Heideh Fattaey, the Executive Director of Bio-X Operations and Programs, at 650-799-1608 or firstname.lastname@example.org.