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Extramural Update

December 2009

Jerry Heindel
Jerry Heindel
(Photo courtesy of Steve McCaw)

Virtual Consortium for Translational/Transdisciplinary Environmental Research (ViCTER)

Ever wish there was a grant program that allows expansion of your currently funded NIEHS grant, and at the same time, allows you to bring in new collaborators to improve the translational or transdisciplinary nature of the research? If so, take a look at ViCTER, "Virtual Consortium for Translational and/or Transdisciplinary Environmental Research," a new grant program developed at NIEHS. The announcement can be found at: Exit NIEHS.

The purpose of the ViCTER program is to foster transdisciplinary collaboration and promote translational research efforts between and among basic (technology and mechanism oriented), clinical (patient-oriented) and population-based researchers and other individuals with expertise relevant to environmental health. The program fosters the gathering of those who study a particular environmental stressor(s) of interest.

The ultimate goal of ViCTER is to accelerate the exchange of knowledge and resources among collaborators to improve human health in those areas where environmental factors are known or expected to influence the development or progression of disease. Each virtual consortium will consist of an NIEHS-funded researcher (lead applicant), who will serve as the principal investigator (PI) and overall coordinator of the consortia, and two new collaborators.

For purposes of this program, translational research is defined as research that involves scientists and public health professionals from the same or multiple disciplines working interactively on a common problem to stimulate the bidirectional flow of information across the spectrum from in vitro systems to rodent models, higher models (sheep/primate), human epidemiological or clinical research, research dissemination and public health action.

Transdisiplinary research is defined as research that involves scientists and public health professionals from multiple disciplines working interactively on a common problem to develop novel cross-disciplinary methods, insights and research approaches that would not have occurred with a traditional uni-disciplinary investigation.

ViCTER will allow you to expand the scope of your own research to include new perspectives, such as basic mechanistic, clinical, epidemiological, computational, engineering and/or health risk communication approaches, expanding the translational and/or transdisciplinary nature of the grants with the goal of improving their impact on public health.

If you have a current NIEHS-funded R01 and will have at least two years of funding remaining on the grant on July 1, 2010, you can submit a Competitive Revision to develop and implement a ViCTER. Eligible PIs can request $100,000 direct costs per year remaining on the parent grant to expand the scope of the original project. In addition, new collaborators can request $75,000 direct costs per year to develop one or two new aims that would improve the transdisciplinary or translational nature of the overall project.

The deadline for receipt of application is January 13, 2010.


Caroline Dilworth, Ph.D. |
Jerrold Heindel, Ph.D. |

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