Research Announcements

Basic & Translational Research on the Zika Virus RFA

2016 Request for Applications

Deadline:  July 10, 2016
Download the complete NNA RFA 2016 Zika Virus final
Link to program announcement and forms

Program Guidelines

The Nebraska Neuroscience Alliance Endowed Fund (NNA) and the Center for Neurovirology and Neurodegenerative Disorders Multiple Sclerosis Research Excellence Fund at the University of Nebraska Foundation are pleased to announce the first request for proposals for basic and translational research on the Zika Virus (ZIKV) and its complications.

This grant will support a single award up to $85,000 supporting an interdisciplinary research team for studies on the immunologic, virologic or neurodevelopmental consequences of ZIKV exposure during pregnancy, the early postnatal period and/or its linkages to autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis. The research would focus primarily on the ability of ZIKV infection to alter the developing central nervous system, including relevant cognitive and behavioral outcomes. NNA program staff will also review and consider applications over a broad range of disciplines beyond the listings of the RFA.

Applications need to include a research plan up to six pages with specific aims, background, preliminary data, research plan and intended outcomes including federal grant proposals, along with a detailed budget and biographical sketches of participating faculty members.

The deadline for submission is July 10, 2016 with review and funding decisions made by August 1, 2016.

Areas of priority include:

  • Investigations of the mechanisms by which ZIKV affects the developing nervous system.
  • Studies of virus-cell biology, replication cycle, cytopathicity and modes of entry.
  • Studies of immunity at the cellular and innate levels.
  • Studies to identify risk for sequelae in exposed but uninfected infants.
  • Investigations of the developing nervous system in regards to sites of viral replication and secondary glial-neuronal responses.
  • Studies to assess and characterize the neurodevelopmental consequences of ZIKV infection.
  • Use of unique biomarkers to assess infection and secondary sequelae.
  • Vaccine development and preventative strategies.

Contact Information

Howard E Gendelman, MD, email or 402-559-8920

Rock, Paper, Scissors: Relative Influences of the Environment and Genotype in Shaping the Oral Microbiome

May 12, 2016 from Noon to 1:00 PM
MSC room 1005

Presented by Purnima Kumar, BDS, MS, PhD, Associate Professor of Periodontology at Ohio State University.  Dr. Kumar is a faculty candidate for the Microbiome Research Program.

Dr. Kumar’s research programs have focused on the modifying effects of smoking on oral bacteria.  Her work has demonstrated the associations between novel and unsuspected oral species and periodontal disease.  Current projects seek to explore how inter-bacterial interactions as well as environmental factors such as smoking can increase risk for disease.

Dr. Kumar’s presentation will also be broadcast to the UNMC College of Dentistry, Lincoln, room 1221.

Social Science Research in the Era of Restricted Access Data

The Central Plains Research Data Center will host Dr. John M Abowd of Cornell University who will be speaking on the use of restricted federal data in research.  This is an off campus event, held on the UNL campus College of Business Administration on April 21, 2:00 PM.

John M. Abowd is the Edmund Ezra Day Professor of Economics, Professor of Statistics and Information Science at Cornell University; the Director of the Labor Dynamics Institute at Cornell and the research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research; President (2014-2015) and Fellow of the Society of Labor Economists; Chair (2013) of the Business and Economic Statistics Section and Fellow of the American Statistical Association; Director of the Cornell Institute for Social and Economic Research (1999-2007. He is a member of the International Statistical Institute; Fellow of the Econometric Society.

Abowd serves on the National Academies’ Committee on National Statistics & on the AEA’s Committee on Economic Statistics. In June, he will become the new Associate Director for Research and Methodology and Chief Scientist at the U.S. Census Bureau.

For further information, contact John Anderson, CPRDC Executive Director at 402.472.1190 or, Veronica Roth at, or visit