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Research Alert

Read the research blog Further Findings.

Research Prizes and Honors

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

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Read the research blog Further Findings.

Research Prizes and Honors

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




Dr. Rueben Gonzales, professor of pharmacology and toxicology at The University of Texas at Austin College of Pharmacy, has been awarded a $2.8 million MERIT Award from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA).

The Method to Extend Research in Time (MERIT) program has become a symbol of scientific achievement in the research community. Gonzales’ research involves chemical changes in the brain that underlie alcohol drinking.

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News and Information


Dr. Susan Sedwick, director of OSP and associate vice president for research, will give a presentation on the reporting requirements (opens PDF, download Adobe Reader) for the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and be available to answer questions. It will be noon-1:30 p.m. Sept. 25, 2009 in the AVAYA auditorium (ACES 2.302) on the main campus.


University Cooperative Society Undergraduate Research Fellowships for 2009-2010 in amounts up to $1,000 are awarded through two competitions, Fall 2009 and Spring 2010. Faculty, lecturers, and full-time research scientists/engineers may supervise undergraduate students in independent research projects. The deadline for the Fall 2009 competition is Sept. 28, 2009. The Spring 2010 deadline will be Feb. 1, 2010.

—Special Research Grants for 2009-2010 in amounts up to $750 are awarded to tenured and tenure-track faculty throughout the year until the money is gone. Applications will be accepted beginning Sept. 1, 2009.

—University Cooperative Society Subvention Grants for 2009-2010 are awarded to faculty authors and members of the research staff (Code 1000). These grants have no submission deadline, and are available until current fiscal year funding is expended.

Find more information on the Office of the Vice President for Research Web site. Direct questions to Liza Scarborough at liza@austin.utexas.edu or 471-2877.

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QuotedUT Researchers in the News

[A sampling of recent quotes by university faculty members and researchers. To be included in this section, let the Research Alert know when you or a colleague have been quoted.]

The New York Times
September 17, 2009
HEADLINE: To Train Harder, Consider a Crowd

(From an article about the benefits of running with a group.)

But despite the lack of solid evidence that group training helps, more and more athletes are starting to think it does. And, they say, there are lessons for amateurs who want to run or swim or cycle faster. The right workout companions, they say, can make all the difference.

”In sports, you need to train at race pace,” said Edward Coyle, an exercise physiologist at The University of Texas at Austin. ”To do that, you need a coach and you need teammates to push you.”

Recreational athletes can benefit, too, Dr. Coyle said. Many run by themselves or without a specific program. ”They probably underestimate their ability,” he said. Group runs ”would help them tremendously.”

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Research Opportunities

Important university research deadlines:
Awards and Grants
Limited Submissions

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


Recovery Act Limited Competition: Building Sustainable Community-Linked Infrastructure to Enable Health Science Research
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Nov. 12, 2009; Application, Dec. 11, 2009


Research Opportunities for Flight Experiments in Space Life Sciences: Biological Research In Canisters for Arabidopsis thaliana
Deadline: Nov. 12, 2009


Targeted Library Synthesis and Screening at Novel Targets for Potential Drug Addiction Treatments and Research Tools
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Nov. 4, 2009; Application, Dec. 4, 2009

Developing Research Capacity in Africa for Studies on HIV-Associated Malignancies
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Nov. 17, 2009; Application, Dec. 17, 2009
[This is a limited submission. For more information, contact limitedsub@austin.utexas.edu.]

NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research Competitive Revisions for Studies Focused on Neuropathic Pain or Neural Plasticity to Promote Collaborative Pain Research
Deadline: Nov. 23, 2009

Exceptional, Unconventional Research Enabling Knowledge Acceleration (EUREKA)
Deadline: Nov. 24, 2009

Biosignature Discovery for Personalized Treatment in Depression
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Dec. 14, 2009; Application, Jan. 13, 2010


Ceramics (basic research in ceramics, diamond and inorganic carbon-based materials)
Deadline: Nov. 2, 2009

Building Engineered Complex Systems (engineers and mathematical scientists)
Deadline: Jan. 19, 2010


National Endowment for the Humanities
Collaborative Research Grants
Deadline: Oct. 29, 2009


Partnership for Clean Competition
Research Grants for anti-doping methods or products in sport
Deadlines: Pre-application, Nov. 1, 2009; Full application, Dec. 1, 2009

The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Senior Scientist Mentor Program
Application Deadline: November 12, 2009
[Please submit your proposal through the Office of Sponsored Projects via the Proposal Review Form. For questions, please call 471-6424 or email osp@austin.utexas.edu.]

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Health Policy Fellows (mid-career professionals from academic faculties)
Deadline: Nov. 13, 2009

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Research Project

[Let the Research Alert know about your research projects.]

Biological Response to the Dynamic Spectral-Polarized Underwater Light Field

Researchers: Molly Cummings, assistant professor, Section of Integrative Biology, principal investigator, and researchers from the University of Connecticut, University of Rhode Island, City College of New York, Texas AandM University and Stanford University
Agency: U.S. Navy
Amount: $4,358,602 (first three years of funding)



Effective camouflage requires minimizing the radiance contrast between an exposed surface and its visual background. Radiance matching of all features of the optical signal–intensity, spectral and polarization components–is important since existing remote-sensing technologies are capable of target detection using intensity-, spectral- and polarized-differencing methods.

Current camouflage techniques do not yet incorporate all three forms of background matching; nor can they mimic the background radiance as dynamically as many biologically camouflaged animals. Some of the most sophisticated examples of camouflage are exhibited by a variety of animals in the oceans, where precise regulation of spectral and polarized reflectivity is achieved through mechanisms that are as yet poorly understood.

The project proposes to identify mechanisms of adaptive camouflage that occur in the optically dynamic near-shore littoral zone–an environment of critical importance to the Navy.

A combination of oceanography, neurobiology, physiology, behavior and physics will provide a comprehensive understanding of biological background matching that can benefit the Navy in identifying a diverse set of camouflage design strategies.

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