January 28, 2019

BBI Seed Grant Program

BBI is pleased to announce the call for proposals for the FY19 Seed Grant Program.

Over the last three years, BBI has awarded seed funding to 21 teams of innovative interdisciplinary researchers from 20 different departments and centers/institutes across campus. These have been extremely successful; BBI's $1.3M investment yielded ~$10M in NIH funding.

We look forward to the next round of exciting proposals for collaborative research about behavior and the brain. Questions should be directed to:

Letter of Intent due: February 15, 2019
Proposal due: April 1, 2019

Seed Grant Information Session

Learn about the Seed Grant Program and forge collaborations with other UMD researchers at the BBI Seed Grant Information Session on Tuesday, February 5, 2019 at 4 p.m. in A. James Clark Hall Forum (room 1101).

Include your research interests in the RSVP and let BBI help introduce you to someone with whom you may want to collaborate!


An enzyme of the bacteria Porphyromonas gingivalis has been found in the brains of patients with the disorder. The new study is one of a growing number that suggest microbes play a role in Alzheimer’s disease.
Researchers have discovered so-called "navigator" neurons, which are essential to forge life’s very first olfactory connections. The olfactory sensory neurons present very early in life have a unique ability to blaze a trail to the brain to establish a coherent olfactory map.
The much-ballyhooed artificial intelligence approach boasts impressive feats but still falls short of human brainpower. Researchers are determined to figure out what’s missing.
There is only scant scientific evidence on whether the genetic risk for developing specific psychiatric disorders or cognitive traits is manifest in brain structure from childhood and, to date, studies have focused primarily on adult populations. The question remains unanswered.
A new study reveals impulsive behaviors may be triggered when dopamine passes from the amygdala to the BNST. The full route that dopamine signals take to produce an impulsive action has not previously been understood.
Elevated blood pressure under age 40 is associated with reduced brain volume, even in the groups with pressure within a range widely considered normal— between 120 and 140 systolic (the top number).

Calendar of Events

Cognitive Science Colloquium
Speaker: Dr. Diane Brentari, University of Chicago
Title: Limits and possibilities of modality on language: phonology through the lens of sign languages
Date: Thursday, January 31, 2019
Time: 3:30 p.m.
Location: 1103 Bioscience Research Building
More info

NACS Seminar
Speaker: Dr. Janet Werker, University of British Columbia
Title: Multisensory Foundations of Infant Speech Perception and Early Word Learning
Date: Friday, February 1, 2019
Time:10:15 a.m.
Location: 1103 Bioscience Research Building
More info

Funding Announcements

Biobehavioral Basis of Chronic Pain (R01 Clinical Trial Optional) (PA-18-944). Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Standard dates apply, The first standard application due date for this FOA is February 5, 2019.  
Applying a Biopsychosocial Perspective to Self-Management of Chronic Pain (R01 Clinical Trial Optional) (PA-18-945). Application Receipt/Submission Date(s): Standard dates apply, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. The first standard application due date for this FOA is February 5, 2019.  

The Science & PINS Prize for Neuromodulation is awarded for innovative research that modulates neural activity through physical (electrical, magnetic, optical) stimulation of targeted sites in the nervous system with implications for translational medicine. Due March 15, 2019.

NCI Investigators and UMD Faculty are invited to submit collaborative projects for graduate student support. It is anticipated that several graduate students will be supported through NCI Cancer Research Training Award fellowships starting in the Fall 2019 semester and that tuition will be covered by the University of Maryland. Seed awards will be judged based on student qualifications as well as potential impact, relevance to cancer, innovation and synergism between physics, math, bioengineering & biocomputation and cancer biology. Proposals should be submitted to Stephanie Noel ( by 5 p.m. on March 29, 2019.

NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award (F99/K00) (RFA-NS-19-011). Application Receipt Date(s): December 13, 2018; April 15, 2019; December 13, 2019; April 15, 2020; December 15, 2020; April 15, 2021 , by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization.

Predoctoral Training in Advanced Data Analytics for Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (BSSR) - Institutional Research Training Program [T32] (RFA-OD-19-011) Application Receipt Date: May 25, 2019.

The Maryland Catalyst Fund program – formerly known as the Faculty Incentive Program – is the University of Maryland’s internal faculty research support program and a key resource in the university’s overall effort to expand its research activity, visibility and impact. The program aims to enable innovative research, to incentivize the pursuit of large, complex, and high-impact research initiatives, and to increase our competitiveness for extramural research awards.

Connect with us on social media