Results from vibration tests in research courtyard

Note: Q&A session on test results available to researchers Feb. 19 at 1 pm in Richard Jones Hall 4340.

OHSU Design & Construction has received the results from the noise and vibration test for the planned Center for Radiochemistry Research that took place on Feb. 11. The test was performed between 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m, and test activities included drilling and hammering in the courtyard (for geotechnical testing), roto-hammer drilling into the MRB façade, coring into the MRB façade, and soil compaction by “jumping-jack” compactor.

The team monitored resulting vibration and noise levels at 11 locations in six rooms across the building. The rooms were 125, 171, 227, 219, 621, and 921. Additionally, ultrasonic sound was measured in room 327.

In summary, the results showed no “egregious” impacts from those activities that will be necessary to construct the facility. The noise testing revealed that the associated sound levels are manageable. All of the activities were audible; however, while noise levels were elevated from some activities, they were similar to the levels that occur with normal use of the laboratories (talking, opening and closing doors, etc).

Little to no impact was seen from the geotechnical exploration from either drilling or test hammering. A careful examination of the data reveals some degree of impact, but not significantly different from the existing background conditions. Similar results were seen from the roto-hammer drilling and coring into the facade. Again, the impact appeared to be similar to background conditions.

Unlike the two above activities, the jumping-jack compactor caused significant impact. This was identified within minutes after it started, and the work was immediately terminated. The compactor caused vibration levels to breach the “1,000uin/sec” limit commonly accepted as a warning level for sensitive research, even at distant locations (171) and at the very top of the building (921). This is a clear impact that would be felt by both people and research subjects and would likely interfere with many kinds of benchtop research. It was determined that this and similar methods cannot be used for actual construction work.

Data from the full set of results are available. Interested OHSU faculty and staff can email Dan Van Brabant at in order to receive the login credentials to access the online portal.

A Q&A session has been scheduled with the noise and vibration consultant for Thursday, Feb. 19 at 1 p.m. in Richard Jones Hall, room 4340 to discuss the full results of the test and answer any questions researchers might have regarding impacts during construction. All are invited to attend.

Don’t miss upcoming INVENT seminars and Michael Baker keynote, Mar. 11

The INVENT Innovation and Entrepreneurship Keynote and Seminar series has just wrapped up its sixth week, with three more seminars and a concluding keynote address still to come. Entrepreneurs, lawyers, educators and scientists from Portland’s bioscience and entrepreneurship communities have contributed insight into pitching a concept, intellectual property rights, regulatory requirements, collaboration, and seeking funds.

INVENT: Seminar Series and Keynote, Winter 2015
When: Every Wednesday from Feb. 18 through Mar. 11 – 5 to 6:30 p.m.
Where: OHSU Collaborative Life Sciences Building (CLSB), South Waterfront, Room 3A001

Next seminar topics

  • Feb. 18: Building collaborations
  • Feb. 25: Building the business model and plan
  • Mar. 4: Getting started

Keynote presentation
Mar. 11: Michael Baker, The Baker Group: “From Sketch to Launch – The Pathway to Commercialization of Innovations”

This educational series is truly a collaborative event and is brought to you, in part, by the Oregon Clinical & Translational Research Institute, the School of Medicine, Knight Cardiovascular Institute, the Division of Management and Technology Transfer & Business Development. Various attendees have given their feedback on INVENT via an anonymous survey. After the seminar on seeking funds, a survey participant said, “All panelists offered unique and helpful insight into the process of finding funding, [which created] a great comprehensive overview of funding sources.” INVENT also provides lasting networking opportunities and attendees and speakers are encouraged to stay and connect after the event.

Please visit the Biomedical Innovation Program for details and registration information.

NIH S10 funding for high-end instrumentation

The Shared Instrument Grant Program (S10), which provides groups of NIH-supported investigators funds to purchase or upgrade shared equipment costing up to $600,000) was announced in late January.  A new S10 opportunity will open for applications on April 29, 2015. The High-End Instrumentation (HEI) Grant Program is specifically designed to fund instrumentation that costs at least $600,000. The maximum award is $2,000,000. Types of instruments supported include, but are not limited to, X-ray diffraction systems, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and mass spectrometers, DNA sequencers, biosensors, electron and confocal microscopes, cell-sorters, and biomedical imagers.

OHSU is not limited in the number of applications we may submit, provided that the applications are for different types of equipment; however, internal review is required. A minimum of three major users who are PIs on active NIH research grants must be identified.

NOTE – INTERNAL COORDINATION REQUIRED: To apply, you must submit a brief 1-3 page preliminary proposal to Dr. Sue Aicher, who is coordinating the review process, by Friday, March 27, 2015. The external application is due May 29, 2015. Your email should include the following:

1. What instrument will be requested, and why it is needed
2. Cost of the instrument, including vendor quote
3. Cost of maintenance contract
4. Where the instrument will be located
5. Major user group info (group of at least 3 scientists with qualifying federal funding at time of the award)
6. Institutional support

Proposals will be evaluated based on whether the instrument will enhance the proposal research, whether there is a good match between the proposal science and the requested instrument, the justification of need, the organization of the project, continuing commitment to the instrument, and the benefit to the overall research community.

NIH wants your input

NIH is seeking time-sensitive input on various initiatives within four separate Institutes:

National Library of Medicine (NLM): NIH Director Working Group deliberations
In order to chart the course for the future of the world’s largest biomedical library, the NIH Director established a working group to review the current state of the NLM as well as to articulate a strategic vision for its future as an international leader in biomedical and health information. Comments are being sought regarding the current value of and future need for NLM programs, resources, research and training efforts and services. Responses must be submitted electronically and will be accepted through March 13, 2015.

Core Centers for Clinical Research: National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
NIAMS invites comments from the community (researchers, members of scientific organizations, and more) to provide their perspective on core centers for clinical research in arthritis, musculoskeletal and skin diseases. This input is intended to inform NIAMS about critical aspects related to the structure and function of future core centers in support of this clinical research. Responses must be submitted by email and will be accepted until March 27, 2015.

Whole Genome Sequencing Project: National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
The NHLBI seeks feedback to help guide the creation of a resource and to stimulate discovery in Precision Medicine of heart, lung and blood (HLB) disorders as part of the Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS) Project.  This Project is envisioned to encompass deep phenotyping from the molecular to the environmental level which will be shared widely with the scientific community through a data/scientific commons. Responses must be submitted via email by April 20, 2015.

Fertility Status and Overall Health: Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
As a preliminary effort in planning a scientific research workshop and for other potential future uses, NICHD seeks comments and suggestions about research on the use of fertility status as a marker of overall health, including information on the current state of the science, the highest priorities moving forward, and potential conceptual or technical barriers to overcome. All comments must be submitted by email by March 20, 2015.

By providing input you have the opportunity to influence NIH policy at the federal level and help direct programs that may be of benefit to your research and to OHSU as a whole.

Spring Vollum Writing Class starts Apr. 1

The Vollum Writing Class is a 6-week professional science writing course open to OHSU graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and faculty.

This class uses short lectures, class discussion, and workshop-style writing assignments to help researchers learn to write better papers and grants. Topics include:

  • The basic elements of good scientific writing style, including sentence and document structure
  • Insight into scientific conventions regarding grammar, punctuation, and usage;
  • Strategies for revising
  • Dealing with writer’s block and time management
  • Best practices for writing introductions, results, discussions, and grant proposals

The class runs for six weeks, 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Wednesdays, beginning Apr. 1, 2015. Six individual tutorials with the instructor are included. There are no prerequisites for this non-credit professional development course, but you should not take the class unless you have enough data to write about.

The course carries a fee of $500 per student (unless you are in a Vollum lab or part of certain graduate Ph.D. programs). Questions? Contact

Access Compass to register for the Vollum Writing Class. (If you are having trouble accessing Compass, just write us directly at and we will sort it out.)

Apply now for Pilot Project Funding for catalyzing translational research

The Oregon Clinical & Translational Research Institute (OCTRI) is now accepting applications for Pilot Project Funding for projects designed to support new clinical and translational research initiatives at OHSU.

OCTRI will award between 4 to 6 awardees ($400,000 total) to facilitate novel, collaborative, multidisciplinary studies that will lead to further research and funding in translational research. The funding is specifically intended to enable the development of subsequent grant applications that will sustain the awardees’ research activity and/or the dissemination of an impactful novel research methodology.

Applications that are responsive to any one of the following three areas will be accepted:

  • Development of Large, Interdisciplinary Grants
  • Development of Novel Research Methodologies
  • T1 Translational Research/First in Human Studies

The amount of each award is expected to be $75,000 over one year. Applicants may request a budget of up to $100,000 if at least $25,000 is allocated for OCTRI services. These services include support with expertise, equipment, and facilities for every stage of the research process.

Applications are due Mar. 31, 2015.

OCTRI Research Forum: Creating a budget for individual research, Feb. 24

Join the Oregon Clinical and Translational Research Institute, OCTRI, in a monthly research forum that addresses all things clinical and translational research.

Don’t miss February’s topic: Creating a budget for individual research
Learn best practices in preparing a budget for grant application. Presenters: Kathryn Krages, pre-award administration, Department of Medical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology;  Neil Unger, grants and contracts analyst, OPAM; and Bridget Adams, manager, Investigator Support and Integration Services.

Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2015
12 to 1 p.m.
Mackenzie Hall 2201

Click here for more information about the OCTRI Research Forum.

OCTRI invites all faculty and staff to discuss issues and solutions to common obstacles in conducting clinical and translational research. Do you have a clinical or translational research question? Let us know, and we’ll do our best to help during these events! Please submit questions and topic requests to Colleen Berreta.

Save the date!
March OCTRI Research Forum: Survey Design and Tools Part 2
Mar. 12, 2015
12 to 1 p.m.
DCH 11600 Vey Auditorium

TTBD Lunch & Learn: Licensing case study presentation, Feb. 26

Are you curious about the licensing and commercialization process at OHSU? Would you like to hear from an inventor who has gone through the process to provide some insight? Join us for a TTBD Lunch & Learn presentation on “An OHSU Licensing Case Study: Discovering New Human MR Imaging Biomarkers.”

Professor and MRI co-inventor Charles Springer, Jr., Ph.D., and TTBD Technology Development Manager, Arvin Paranjpe, M.S., J.D., will walk through an OHSU intellectual property licensing case study. The presentation will introduce an OHSU MRI breast cancer technology and its progression through the invention disclosure review, patent protection, licensing and commercialization processes.

Thursday, Feb. 26
12 to 1 p.m.

Mackenzie Hall 2201

This event is open to all OHSU employees, faculty and students. Admission is free, no RSVP is necessary, and complimentary snacks and beverages will be provided.


Susan Tolle, M.D., publishes article in NEJM on end-of-life care

Susan Tolle, M.D., a professor of medicine at OHSU and director of the OHSU Center for Ethics in Health Care, is one of the founders of the Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) movement. As the recipient of the 2014 MacLean Center Prize in Clinical Ethics and prominent POLST researcher and advocate, Tolle was recently invited by the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) to write an article on the topic of how best to ensure that people with serious illness or frailty receive the treatments they want and avoid those they do not want. The article entitled “End-of-Life Advance Directive,” appears in the Feb. 12, 2015 online edition of NEJM and is written as a clinical decision in response to a case vignette. Tolle makes a strong case for primary care physician involvement in the POLST process.

Tolle, along with co-researcher and -author Erik Fromme, M.D., a palliative care specialist with the Knight Cancer Institute at OHSU, published results of a study in July 2014, showing POLST is highly effective at helping patients have control over end -of-life care including limiting hospitalizations for patients who prefer to die at home. This narrative is critical given that less than 10 percent of Americans report they want to die in the hospital, and yet, without predefined medical orders, many do.

OHSU’s Massively Parallel Sequencing Shared Resource receives new equipment

The Massively Parallel Sequencing Shared Resource (MPSSR) has been operating since 2009, providing sequencing services for OHSU investigators who examine genetic profiles as part of their research. Recently, the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust provided funding for a major expansion of the MPSSR. Among the items funded are:

1) a new Illumina HiSeq 2500;
2) an upgrade of the current Illumina HiSeq 2000 to permit runs with two-lane rapid run flow cells; and
3) a new Illumina NextSeq 500.

The HiSeq 2500 and the NextSeq 500 were delivered on Dec. 22 and installed in mid-January. The upgrade of the 2000 is expected sometime in February.

The addition of the new equipment triples the overall throughput for the core, thus providing long-needed support for small projects and for rapid turnaround for grant and paper deadlines.

Questions about the new equipment can be directed to the core director, Bob Searles.

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.

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