UNIBE ribbon cutting

Cutting a Ribbon for Cutting-edge Research

Seeding Labs Blog, Instrumental Access 2016 0 Comments

Congratulations to our partners at the Universidad Iberoamericana (UNIBE), who just celebrated the inauguration of their new Institute for Tropical Medicine and Global Health!

Thanks to your support and a shipment of Instrumental Access equipment, the Dominican Republic now has its first research institute dedicated to emerging, tropical, and infectious diseases.

Our Global Partnerships Manager Melissa Wu was a guest at the inauguration on Feb. 1, 2017, and reports that the Institute is the result of years of planning. Its origins can be traced to a decade ago, when UNIBE began integrating research into the fabric of the university.

Seeding Labs Global Partnerships Manager Melissa Wu delivering remarks at the Institute's inauguration.

Seeding Labs Global Partnerships Manager Melissa Wu delivering remarks at the Institute’s inauguration.

Five years ago, two of the youngest faculty members at UNIBE, Dr. Aída Mencia-Ripley, Dean of Research, and Dr. Robert Paulino, the Director of the new Institute, began to lay the groundwork for the country’s first center dedicated to tropical medicine.

Just one year after joining the Instrumental Access program in 2016, the equipment from Seeding Labs helped them achieve their ambitious goal.

Institute Director Dr. Robert Paulino (center) offers the Minister of Health and others a tour of the new Institute.

Dr. Paulino intends to use the equipment to realize his vision of an Institute with local focus but global impact. “That which affects us affects our neighboring countries,” he said at the Institute’s opening. “[Global health] is a concept of international equality.”

While the Institute’s major areas of study will be diseases like HIV, Chikungunya, and emerging viruses like Zika that are particularly important in the Dominican Republic, these issues are threats that don’t respect geographic boundaries. By bringing Dominican expertise and research to the global scientific community, Dr. Paulino is bridging an important gap.

Support from Seeding Labs and our donor USAID was commemorated at the new Institute. Pictured left to right are Adolis Ledo of Thermo Fisher, Dr. Paulino, Melissa Wu, and Roberta Morris of Thermo Fisher. Thermo Fisher was one of 24 corporate partners who donated equipment to UNIBE’s Instrumental Access shipment.

We’re so pleased to be a part of UNIBE’s success and look forward to the discoveries that will come!

Pictured at top: Cutting the ribbon at the Institute for Tropical Medicine and Global Health are Dr. Aída Mencía-Ripley, Dean of Research at UNIBE; Dr. Robert Paulino, Director of the Institute for Tropical Medicine and Global Health; Dr. Julio Castaños Guzmán, President of UNIBE; Dr. Altagracia Guzmán, Minister of Health for the Dominican Republic; Dr. Melissa P. Wu, Global Partnerships Manager at Seeding Labs; and Roberta Morris, VP at Thermo Fisher.

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Feb. 2017 Grants & Resources

Grants & Opportunities Roundup: February 2017

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Every month our Global Partnerships Manager Melissa Wu collects opportunities that scientists and students in developing countries can take advantage of. Here’s our monthly roundup of the latest calls and resources for February 2017.

We’d love to know if something that we shared here aids you in your career–send us an email if so! We’re also happy to receive your grants and opportunities submissions for consideration in the next monthly installment.

Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly newsletter to receive these directly in your mailbox!

Grants & Fellowship Opportunities

International Exchanges

Deadline: 7 March 2017

Grants are available through the Royal Society – Royal Society of Chemistry International Exchanges Award for collaborations between researchers in the UK and those in Sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa) working on projects in the field of Chemistry. Up to £12,000 is available for 2-year projects for travel and subsistence including a maximum of £2,000 for research expenses. Applications must be made through the Standard Programme 2017/R1 (Standard Programme) deadline, which is now open and will close 7 March 2017.

Vaccine Development Against Prioritized Epidemic Infectious Diseases

Deadline: 8 March 2017
The Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Initiative (CEPI) is launching its call for proposals open to all types of organisations able to advance vaccine candidates from the late pre-clinical stage through to Phase II for MERS, Lassa fever, and Nipah. A key criterion for funding is to have data from a relevant animal model demonstrating immunogenicity and likely protective immunity. Preliminary proposals are due 8 March, after which applicants will be invited to submit full proposals.

Lerner-Gray Grants for Marine Research
Deadline: 15 March 2017
Early career researchers (including doctoral students) proposing to conduct research in systematics, evolution, ecology, zoology or paleontology of marine life and environments are invited to apply to the Lerner-Gray Grants for Marine Research. Grants made from this program generally range between $500 and $2,500. Please note that this grant does not support research in botany or biochemistry. Research may be conducted at the American Museum of Natural History or in the field.
Newton International Fellowships
Deadline: 15 March 2017
The Newton International Fellowships enable researchers to work for two years at a UK institution with the aim of fostering long-term international collaborations. The Scheme aims to attract the most promising early career postdoctoral researchers from overseas in the fields of natural sciences, physical sciences, medical sciences, social sciences and the humanities.
TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visits Programme
Deadline: 31 March 2017
The TWAS-DFG Cooperation Visits Programme provides postdoctoral researchers from sub-Saharan Africa, including South Africa, with the opportunity to make a ‘Cooperation Visit’ to an institute in Germany of no more than 3 months. The aim of the visit is to discuss research collaboration with German scientists with the ultimate goal of developing longer-term collaboration, perhaps through other Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, or German Research Foundation) programmes. TWAS will cover health insurance and travel expenses, while DFG will provide subsistence costs for the stay in Germany. The administration and financial operation of TWAS is undertaken by UNESCO in accordance with an agreement signed by the two organizations.
agriculture 2017 Travel Awards

Deadline: 31 March 2017

The agriculture journal is invited applications for two Travel Awards for junior investigators and PhD students to attend a conference between July 2017 and June 2018. The abstract to be presented must be attached to the application.
Partnerships for the Development of Tools to Advance Therapeutic Discovery for Select Antimicrobial-resistant Gram-negative Bacteria
Deadline: 7 April 2017
The US National Institutes of Health is offering this grant to support projects focused on understanding the principles that allow molecules to penetrate Gram-negative bacteria while avoiding efflux and overt toxicity toward eukaryotic cells. Projects must involve developing and using novel predictive assays and/or research tools based on the penetration and efflux of small molecules to facilitate therapeutic discovery for Gram-negative bacterial pathogens, including carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), MDR Acinetobacter and/or MDR Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Zika Virus and Complications
Deadline: 16 June 2017
The purpose of this R21 funding opportunity from the NIH is to provide support for research on the Zika virus and its complications. It is intended to encourage new exploratory and developmental research projects. Long-term projects or projects designed to increase knowledge in a well-established area will not be considered. The goal is to determine whether ZIKV infection causes microcephaly and other congenital abnormalities in babies and the potential rapid spread of ZIKV to the United States.
Asian Development Bank/Japan Scholarship Program
Deadline: 6 months before admission
The Asian Development Bank/Japan Scholarship Program offers about 300 postgraduate scholarships a year for MS/PhD studies in economics, management, science and technology, and other development-related fields at participating academic institutions located in 10 countries within the region. Upon completion of their study programs, scholars are expected to contribute to the economic and social development of their home countries. Scholarships cover tuition, monthly stipend, housing, books, insurance, and travel.
BioFISA II Mobility Grants
Deadline: December 2018
The BioFISA Program (a Finnish-Southern African Partnership Program) is aimed at strengthening the NEPAD SANBio Network. It offers support for conferences, knowledge exchange, technical training, peer meetings, and proposal development. Applications are open to participants from SANBio member countries – Angola, Botswana, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Lesotho, South Africa, Seychelles, Swaziland, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. Grants of up to ZAR 30,000 cover flight, accommodation, and registration fees.

Workshops & Conferences

BecA-ILRI Molecular Biology & Bioinformatics Training

1-12 May 2017, Nairobi, Kenya
The Biosciences eastern and central Africa-International Livestock Research Institute (BecA-ILRI) Hub seeks to strengthen the capacity of the African scientific community to conduct bioscience research that will improve agricultural products and enhance food security in the region. he BecA-ILRI Hub in collaboration with the Rwanda Agriculture Board, Rubona Centre will hold a training workshop on Introduction to Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics at its hub in Nairobi, Kenya. Workshop is open only to researchers in BecA countries.

International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics
30 Aug-30 Sep, Washington DC, USA
The International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics, sponsored in part by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) and the Foundation for the NIH, will train early-mid career stage health care professionals and trainees from developing nations. Research scientists, physicians, dentists, dentist-scientists, nurses, counselors and medical, dental and graduate school trainees can apply. Selected candidates will be fully sponsored (travel, local transportation, lodging, per diem) for the duration of the Summit. Accepting applications until all seats are filled.

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UTEC unpacking equipment

Bolstering Bioengineering in Peru

Seeding Labs Blog, Instrumental Access 2016 0 Comments

Instrumental Access Update: Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología

Your support has helped pave the way for Peru’s first bioengineering department to launch degree programs this year!

Bioengineering is a nascent research area in Peru but has immense potential to address environmental concerns like pollution and bioremediation, as well as health risks presented by tropical and infectious diseases.

In hopes of finding creative solutions to these issues–some of Peru’s biggest challenges–Dr. Melanie Cornejo, provost of Universidad de Ingeniería y Tecnología (UTEC) and pictured above, is spearheading the country’s first bioengineering program at UTEC .

Thanks to an Instrumental Access shipment of lab equipment, Dr. Cornejo and colleagues in the new Department of Bioengineering are now equipped to provide hands-on opportunities for students who are ready to tackle these challenges and more!

  • UTEC's Dr Paloma Salas

    UTEC’s Dr. Paloma Salas unpacking an HPLC system provided by Seeding Labs

  • UTEC unpacking

    The Department of Bioengineering at UTEC unpacking their Instrumental Access shipment

“Most courses within the bioengineering curriculum will have an important lab component, which will make great use of the equipment,” Dr. Cornejo says. “Since the curriculum is project-based and the students are faced with real-world challenges from day one, they will use this equipment to prototype and come up with innovative solutions.”

UTEC’s Instrumental Access shipment from Seeding Labs contained 119 lab instruments and supplies donated by 28 US-based corporations worth more than $102,000!

In addition to increasing access for students, the equipment will help Dr. Cornejo make progress on important public health issues using innovative bioengineering approaches.

For example, she is currently working with nanotechnology to find solutions to Peru’s shortage of potable water, which is often contaminated by illegal mining.

“The investment for research is big, which is why the support from Seeding Labs plays such an important role,” she says.

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