HHS SBIR PA-09-062
NOTE: The Solicitations and topics listed on this site are copies from the various SBIR agency solicitations and are not necessarily the latest and most up-to-date. For this reason, you should use the agency link listed below which will take you directly to the appropriate agency server where you can read the official version of this solicitation and download the appropriate forms and rules.
The official link for this solicitation is: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-09-062.html
Application Due Date:
Available Funding Topics
Probes for Microimaging The Nervous System
An emerging area of scientific opportunity is the design and use of probes to study structure and function at the molecular and subcellular level in living cells. Approaches and tools such as labels that attach to specific peptide or nucleotide moieties, Fluorescent Resonance Energy Transfer, Green Fluorescent Protein (and mutant color variants), and genetically-engineered voltage or ion-sensitive fluorophores are making it possible to begin to visualize not only the distribution of molecular species in cells, but the manner in which they interact. Research and development of these, and other such technologies, hold the promise of providing scientists the capabilities to track the ebb and flow of signal transduction cascades, protein-protein interactions, protein-nucleotide interactions, movement of subcellular elements within cells, and other dynamic events. And, it appears that as such tools are elaborated and further studied, they will permit such observations to be quantitative and made in real time. Finally, bioengineering individual probes that are detectable by multiple modalities, (e.g., electron microscopy, fluorescent microscopy and fluorescent spectroscopy, magnetic resonance imaging) would add great value by allowing independent lines of scientific inquiry to converge on the same cellular process and/or structure as indicated by the multimodal probe. This area of science and technology is poised for major advances, and these advances would bring new levels of understanding of the molecular physiology of nervous system cells, as well as the manner in which this physiology is affected by disease, pharmacologic agents, development, etc.
Examples of general research topics that would be considered appropriate to this FOA are listed below. This is not meant to be an exhaustive, exclusive or delimiting set of topics. Rather these represent illustrations of projects that would be considered relevant to this FOA.
- Bioengineering of small-molecule, sterically benign probes that can be genetically linked to proteins that play important roles in cell function
- Research, development and engineering of probes that can report quantitative information regarding particular molecular or subcellular events or structures
- Research and development of probes that attach to specific sites on proteins which are observable through multiple modalities (e.g., magnetic resonance, optical).
- Research and development of caged molecules that provide temporally and spatially controlled release of molecular probes.
- Research facilitating collaborative research between the probe chemists (including radio, optical, and magnetic resonance chemists) and the biological or clinical investigators.
- Research and development of imaging probes through directed chemical modification of probe leads using biological screening employing previously developed in vitro assays, to determine structure-activity relationships.
- Research and development of specialized software/informatics for performing automated specificity analysis of imaging probes, to help streamline the process of sensitivity testing in vivo, especially for analysis involving multiple imaging modalities or multiple neurological and psychiatric disorders.