Applying for foundation funding? Check out the President’s List!

Just a friendly reminder that if you plan to submit a grant to a foundation or corporation on the OHSU President’s List, you are required to submit a Notice of Intent form to the OHSU Foundation. The purpose of the President’s List is to ensure that OHSU maintains coordinated communication with these organizations. Additionally, some organizations are reserved for top institutional priorities as determined by senior OHSU leadership.

Things to keep in mind:

  • If you’re interested in applying to one of these organizations, please submit a Notice of Intent form. The Notice of Intent Form is only required for organizations on the list.
  • If Office of Proposal & Award Management needs to contact one of these organizations or receives communications from them, please let someone on the Office of Foundation Relations team know.
  • The OHSU President’s List is updated about once a year.

Questions? Contact the OHSU Foundation.

OHSU researchers identify complex required for healthy brain

Brain phenotypes of Rcor1 and Rcor2 knockouts at E18.5.

Brain phenotypes of Rcor1 and Rcor2 knockouts at E18.5.

The intricately orchestrated series of events in nervous system development begins with the formation of neuroepithelial stem cells. These cells proliferate, creating progenitor cells that ultimately form neurons and the glia that provide support and protection for neurons. The balance of neurons and glia is fundamental to the development of a healthy brain.

Achieving the optimal neuron–glia balance depends on a delicate relationship between the proliferation of progenitors and the differentiation of neurons and glia. While it is thought that repressors and the corepressors that bind to them affect this relationship, repressor/corepressor complexes have not been shown in vivo.

A team of researchers from OHSU’s Vollum Institute has now identified, in embryonic brains of mice, a repressor/corepressor complex consisting of Insulinoma-associated 1 (INSM1), which halts the cycle of cell division, and the RE1 Silencing Transcription factor (REST) corepressors RCOR1 and RCOR2. The findings were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Jan. 3, 2017.

The research, led by Gail Mandel, Ph.D., senior scientist at the Vollum Institute, with OHSU graduate student Caitlin Monaghan as first author, identified for the first time a repressor complex required for these critical transcription events that lead to the cessation of neural proliferation and therefore enable the production of proper numbers of differentiated neurons and glia. The findings demonstrated that an INSM1/RCOR1/2 complex controls the balance of proliferation and differentiation during brain development. Eliminating either INSM1 or both RCOR1 and RCOR2 in the brains of mice significantly increased neural proliferation over differentiation of neurons and glia oligodendrocytes. The resulting abnormal brain morphology was restored when REST levels in the RCOR1/2-deficient brain normalized.

This research was supported by NIH grants NS022518, ULITR000128, NS093066, and DK09949. Other OHSU authors include Tamilla Nechiporuka from the Mandel lab, as well as Sophia Jeng and Shannon McWeeney from the Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology in the OHSU School of Medicine.

New NIH font guidelines go into effect Jan. 25

NIH has updated their recommended font list for applications submitted on or after Jan. 15, 2017. Following is a summary of guidelines that will apply to text in PDF grant application attachments:

  • Text color: Perhaps the most notable change, text in PDF attachments is no longer restricted to the color black. Though not required, black or other high-contract colors are recommended. Read: no fuchsia comic sans.  
  • Font size: Must be 11 points or larger. Smaller text in figures, graphs, diagrams, and charts is still acceptable as long as it’s legible when the page is viewed at 100%.
  • Type density: Must be no more than 15 characters per linear inch (including characters and spaces).
  • Line spacing: Must be no more than six lines per vertical inch.
  • Recommended fonts:  Arial, Georgia, Helvetica, Palatino Linotype. Other fonts are acceptable if they meet the above requirements. See the Font FAQs for additional guidance.

Still have questions? Learn more about formatting attachments here.

Nominate an OHSU colleague for Impact Awards: deadlines Jan. 1 and Jan. 16

Nominations for Impact Awards are being accepted now. You may nominate OHSU individuals or teams who are using innovative approaches to generate positive social or environmental change. Each year at the Elevating Impact Summit, PSU presents the awards to people behind breakthrough innovations. Teams can be an entire organization, a unit within an organization, or a less formal affiliation working together to achieve a similar goal. The 2017 Summit will be held on Feb. 13.

Health Innovation Award — Nomination deadline, Jan. 1
The Health Innovation award recognizes the achievements of an entrepreneur or entrepreneurial team working to address a health or healthcare related problem through the innovative application of business tools and approaches. Submit your nomination today.

Impact Invention Award — Nomination deadline, Jan. 16
The Impact Invention Award recognizes the achievements of an entrepreneur or entrepreneurial team working to address a social, environmental, or economic problem through an invention-based enterprise creating a new physical product or products. Inventions include novel devices or products created to solve a problem. Submit your nomination today.

Questions? Please contact Daphne Emerson Peters for more information.


LOIs for Circle of Giving funding due Friday, Jan. 6

This is a reminder to submit your letters of intent for the following funding opportunity: The OHSU Center for Women’s Health Circle of Giving is now accepting submissions for its 2017 Women’s Health Research Funding Opportunity. Prior to submitting an application, a letter of intent is first required. The letter of intent is due Jan. 6, 2017, and the application is due Jan. 20, 2017. Circle of Giving funding is intended to support new or established investigators interested in developing innovative directions in women’s health research.

Applications will be accepted from faculty at the rank of lecturer, assistant, associate, or full professor. Applications may be in basic science, clinical investigation, population health, or behavioral research. The pilot project conducted using these seed funds is expected to lead to additional research funded by federal and non-federal sources. The proposed research must be intended to produce a tangible improvement in women’s health.

The Circle expects to award $125,000 to support one project for one year. There may be opportunity for a second award this year.

Please view the full RFP for additional information. Applications must be submitted via OHSU’s Competitive Application Portal (CAP).


OHSU addiction researchers find opportunity for intervention

Honora EnglanderPatients with substance use disorders often suffer from and are hospitalized due to chronic illnesses that cause medical conditions such as abscesses and cardiovascular disease. Hospitalization temporarily disrupts drug use and can bring patients an increased awareness of mortality, the harmful effects of substance use, and its costs on relationships, including parenting.

Some evidence also suggests that initiating medication-assisted treatment during these hospitalizations can increase the likelihood of patients engaging in substance use disorder treatment after discharge. However, these interventions have shown high rates of attrition in treatment. Little research has been conducted on factors associated with these individuals’ readiness to change.

Now, a team of OHSU addiction medicine researchers has published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine findings that provide insights into the patient, provider, and health system factors that can be used to initiate and coordinate addiction care.

Addiction medicine specialist Honora Englander, M.D., associate professor in the School of Medicine Division of Hospital Medicine and medical director of the OHSU Community & Clinical Integration Medicine Teaching Service, led the research, which was designed to better understand factors that impact readiness to change.

The study used patient perspectives to identify influences on their motivation to change and to engage in treatment during hospitalization. Researchers interviewed hospitalized adults admitted to OHSU medical or surgical units who reported as high-risk for alcohol or drug use. The team found that while many participants were interested in treatment, the participants also saw significant barriers to obtaining care after discharge, including homelessness and trauma. Patients suggested higher success rates could be influenced by improved care coordination and more timely transition from inpatient to outpatient treatment. Participants valued providers who understood substance use disorders and the importance of treatment choice.

The research found that hospitalization provides an excellent opportunity for treatment of substance use disorders, and that understanding patient perspectives on treatment options might improve the outcomes of these interventions. The researchers reported that the patient’s voice is critical in shaping system improvements and best practices.

As part of the Springer Nature SharedIt initiative, the paper is available to the public.
In addition to Englander, the study was conducted by Todd Korthuis, M.D., M.P.H., associate professor in the OHSU-PSU School of Public Health and in the School of Medicine Division of Internal Medicine; Christine Velez Klug, M.S.W., instructor in Community & Clinical Integration and the PSU School of Social Work; and Christina Nicolaidis, M.D., M.P.H., professor and senior scholar in the PSU Social Determinants of Health Initiative and associate professor in the School of Medicine Division of Internal Medicine and OHSU-PSU School of Public Health.

Join us for today’s Funding Focus: Promoting your science

In the modern information economy, it can be hard to get attention for your science—whether it’s from traditional media, social media, or even with tools like Research Gate. Join this panel discussion to learn about best practices for promoting your science and the OHSU resources that can help you. Find out how to work with OHSU’s media relations and social media departments—and what you can do to promote your research yourself.

Panelists include Tamara Hargens-Bradley, associate director, OHSU Media Relations; Kathryn Peck, social media manager, OHSU Brand Strategy; and Robin Champieux, scholarly communications librarian.

Monday, Dec. 19
noon to 1 p.m.
Vollum Institute M1441

This discussion will be followed up with an intensive workshop during OHSU Research Week, May 1-3.

Funding Focus is a series of workshops that Research Funding and Development Services offers throughout the year to share advice, tips, and general information on funding for the OHSU research community. Faculty, postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, and administrators are all welcome to attend. No registration is required.

Questions? Write

OHSU research yields insight into aspirin’s anti-cancer effect

Acetylsalicylic acid, a.k.a. aspirin.

Acetylsalicylic acid, a.k.a. aspirin.

The anti-inflammatory and anti-platelet properties of aspirin have made it the subject of intensive investigation for over a century. More recently, aspirin use has been correlated with reduced long-term risk of some cancers, particularly colorectal cancer. The reasons remain unknown, as does the degree to which the effect comes from direct inhibition of cancer cells and how much is due to inhibition of platelet activation and function.

A study recently completed by a team of OHSU researchers and published in the American Journal of Physiology—Cell Physiology suggests the benefit of aspirin may be due to its effect on platelets rather than acting directly on tumor cells.

In a series of experiments with cultured cells, a team led by Owen McCarty, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering in the School of Medicine, showed that inhibition of platelets with low doses of aspirin cuts the signaling link between platelets and some cancer cells, which in turn knocks back cancer growth.

It is not yet known whether the cascade of effects observed in cell cultures works the same way in people. The new findings are not sufficient to justify taking aspirin solely to help prevent cancer. Aspirin has an effect mediated by platelets that may work in concert with aspirin’s anti-inflammatory properties to oppose malignant cell growth, and low doses of aspirin might eventually prove a safe and effective way to prevent cancer in patients at risk.

The research was supported by grants from the Altarum Institute, the National Institutes of Health, and the American Heart Association.

Read the OHSU release.

Supplemental funding available for research on sex/gender influences

The recently implemented NIH policy requiring grant applicants to consider sex as a biological variable in the design of basic and pre-clinical animal studies has prompted considerable discussion. Translating this policy into action is complex. For example, the cost associated with expanding the scope of a study to include additional cell lines or study animals is a pressing issue for many investigators.

The Office of Research on Women’s Health is responding to this concern by providing administrative supplements to support research highlighting the impact of sex/gender influences and/or sex and gender factors in basic, preclinical, clinical and behavioral studies. Supplemental applications, within the scope of the parent application, may include the following approaches:

  • Adding the opposite sex: Adding animal or human subjects, tissues or cells of the sex opposite to those used in the parent grant to allow sex/gender-based comparisons.
  • Increasing sample size: Adding more animal or human subjects, tissues or cells to a sample  to increase the power of a study for analysis of  sex/gender differences.
  • Conducting new experiments or comparative analyses: Developing new experimental approaches or comparative analyses of existing samples or datasets to investigate the role of sex/gender.

Supplemental applications must address at least one objective from Goals 1-3 of the NIH Strategic Plan for Women’s Health Research:

  1. Increase sex differences research in basic science studies.
  2. Incorporate findings of sex/gender in the design and development of new technologies, medical devices, and therapeutic drugs.
  3. Actualize personalized prevention, diagnostics, and therapeutics for girls and women.

The objectives of Goals 2 and 3 are of higher programmatic importance and applications studying one or more of these goals will be given higher consideration. For applications that address Goal 1, of special interest are studies to understand the influence of biological sex on cells, primary cell cultures, immortalized cell lines, transformed cells, and tissue explants.

The Office of Research on Women’s Health intends to commit $3,000,000 in FY 2017 to fund 30 awards. Supplemental application budgets are limited to $65,000 in direct costs but additional indirect costs may also be requested. The award project period is limited to one year. The parent grant must have at least 18 months of active support remaining from the supplement application due date, which is February 13, 2017. Guidelines on submitting your application can be found here. Still have questions? Contact your Grants and Contracts Administrator.


David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., receives National Academy of Inventors award

OHSU Casey Eye Institute researcher David Huang, M.D., Ph.D., has been named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. Academic inventors and innovators elected to the rank of NAI Fellow were nominated by their peers for outstanding contributions to innovation in areas such as patents and licensing, innovative discovery and technology, significant impact on society, and support and enhancement of innovation.huang120px

Huang, the Peterson Professor of Ophthalmology and Professor of Biomedical Engineering at OHSU, has indeed demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in the field of vision research. Huang is a co-inventor of optical coherence tomography (OCT), an imaging technology that has been applied to the measurement of eye structures with unprecedented precision. More recently he has pioneered anterior segment OCT and OCT angiography. He has 16 issued patents and 14 pending patents in the areas of OCT, mobile health testing, tissue engineering and corneal laser surgery. He has published more than 180 peer-reviewed articles – his seminal article on OCT, published in Science in 1991, has been cited more than 10,000 times – and edited 7 books.

Other awards Huang has received include the Champalimaud Vision Award, the ARVO Jonas Friedenwald Award, and the Senior Achievement Award from the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Dr. Huang leads the Center for Ophthalmic Optics and Lasers ( He is a founder of Gobiquity Mobile Health, Inc. (, a maker of mobile diagnostic apps and devices for medical professionals.

The 2016 NAI Fellows were evaluated by a selection committee that included 19 members, comprising NAI Fellows, recipients of U.S. National Medals, National Inventors Hall of Fame inductees, members of the National Academies and senior officials from the USPTO, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Association of American Universities, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, Association of University Technology Managers, and other prominent organizations. The 2016 Fellows will be inducted on April 6, 2017, as part of the Sixth Annual Conference of the National Academy of Inventors at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum in Boston.



Welcome to the Research News Blog

Welcome to the Research News Blog

OHSU Research News is your portal to information about all things research at Oregon Health & Science University. Visit often for updates on events, discoveries, and important funding information.

Participation Guidelines

Remember: information you share here is public; it isn't medical advice. Need advice or treatment? Contact your healthcare provider directly. Read our Terms of Use and this disclaimer for details.