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Third Round Awarded Proposals

Posted On April 23, 2013
Categories Proposals
Basic research investigations of microbial pathogens, with the goals of understanding their pathogenesis and preventing/treating the diseases they cause, continue to be a major focus of federal agencies. The proposed research cluster focuses on studying the complex interactions between host cells and medically important pathogens or microbial toxins, and is expected to have a significant impact on the prevention and treatment of diseases caused by these agents. Faculty with unique strengths in the area of microbial pathogenesis within the Departments of Biology and Chemistry represent the nucleus of this cluster. A cluster hire will consist of one senior faculty member and two tenure track faculty with demonstrated ability to do high quality research on microbial pathogens or toxins. The new hires will bring “state of the art” capabilities and funded basic research projects with strong translational potential, and will significantly expand the research training opportunities despite the absence of a medical school at GSU. Members of this cluster will investigate different pathogens or pathogen model systems, but will cooperate with significant synergy and foster the exchange of ideas and technical expertise within the group. The cluster members will be expected to maximize the use of the enormous existing investment and nationally unique resources of the Cores and specialized laboratory (including BSL-3/4) facilities in the Center for Biotechnology and Drug Design, the Viral Immunology Center and the Departments of Biology and Chemistry. Cluster faculty will collaborate with GSU faculty in the Molecular Basis of Disease Area Focus, the Center for Inflammation, Immunity and Infection, and the Center for Diagnostics and Therapeutics as well as with other researchers and clinicians. The establishment of this cluster will create the critical mass of faculty needed for competitiveness for federal training grant applications and will increase the potential for extramural support from Center grants. Resubmission of this proposal was invited.

Contact: Margo Brinton, Professor, Department of Biology

Neuroethics has emerged in the 21st century as an increasingly significant interdisciplinary area of research. Neuroethics considers how ethical theories inform neuroscientific practice and how neuroscientific discoveries inform ethical theorizing. For instance, it addresses the ethical implications of brain scanning technologies now being used for lie detection, marketing, and predicting future behavior. It considers questions regarding brain science and the law, including legal responsibility and punishment. Neuroethics includes research on the neuropsychological processes that underlie moral cognition and behavior, as well as the impact of such discoveries on debates about ethics and moral psychology. For instance, does modern neuroscience threaten our conceptions of self, free will, or moral responsibility? The 2CI hires in neuroethics will allow Georgia State University to build an internationally recognized Neuroethics Program at the forefront of this increasingly influential field. The program will be highly interdisciplinary, drawing on the resources of the Department of Philosophy, the Neuroscience Institute, the Department of Psychology, and the College of Law. The new hires will build on this foundation and form the core of a new Neuroethics Program, including a Neuroethics Concentration within the Neuroscience PhD degree.

Contact: Eddy Nahmias, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy & Neuroscience Institute

Over half of the world’s people and 80 percent of Americans live in cities. From this fact alone, a compelling case can be made for the importance of thriving cities. But not all roads lead cities to prosperity: many cities around the world are suffering under the weight of their own growth and sprawl, with attending problems of pollution, traffic congestion, and expensive services; others are stagnating and decaying under the forces of blight. Well-crafted laws and policies are crucial to lead cities in the right direction.

The starting point for shaping the future of cities is literally to shape the cities themselves ‘to focus on cities’ design and physical and social infrastructure, with a view to procuring desirable places in which to live, work, and play. This means providing affordable housing, efficient transportation, and urban amenities like green space, clean air, and clean and abundant water supplies.

The Andrew Young School of Policy Studies (AYSPS), with its departments of Economics and Public Management and Policy (PMAP), the College of Law (COL), and the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Sociology share a common strength in urban policy, with internationally recognized experts in the area of urban and local public economics, social networks, urban planning, growth management, smart growth, zoning, and environmental and land use law.

This initiative builds on these existing strengths with a cluster hire of four faculty members working in urban policy and land use law. This proposal directly advances the university’s strategic cities initiative, building momentum behind GSU’s proposed Council for the Progress of Cities and advancing the university’s goal of global distinction, while simultaneously building on and tying together the existing infrastructure of the Center for the Comparative Study of Metropolitan Growth (COL), Fiscal Research Center (AYSPS), and the Center for Neighborhood and Metropolitan Studies (A&S).

Contact: H. Spencer Banzhaf, Associate Professor, Department of Economics

We propose a cluster-hiring plan for three positions in the general area of biomarker-based and imaging- guided therapeutics, which represents the future trend in developing novel and targeted therapeutics and is along the directions of national funding agencies such as the NIH. Such a plan combines our existing extraordinary strengths in diagnostics with therapeutics, builds upon the extensive available expertise in the component departments and the results of a previously funded 2CI cluster proposal in diagnostics, expands into new directions (biomarker-based and imaging-guided therapeutics), and creates synergistic results. The effort will be critical to the future of GSU’s biomedical research effort. The team is very strong with 27 members, three GRA Eminent Scholars, and Prof. Jenny J. Yang as the lead person. This plan is also in line with the strategic directions of the Georgia Research Alliance (GRA), the Georgia Cancer Coalition (GCC), the newly formed Center for Diagnostics and Therapeutics (CDT), and the three component units: Chemistry, Biology, and the Neuroscience Institute. Excellent infrastructure exists to allow for the recruitment of high caliber candidates and for new hires to start making a major impact upon their arrival. The hiring plan focuses on areas of drug development that complements and strengthens the existing programs, addresses current needs and the “critical mass” issue for future center and program project grant efforts. Specifically, we plan to hire in three of the following areas: animal, new target identification, imaging-guided therapy and drug delivery, and drug fate and pharmacokinetic studies.

Contact: Jenny Yang, Professor, Department of Chemistry