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Funding News - Research on Strategies for Germ-line Modifications in the Rat Encouraged

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The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) encourages, along with 6 other components of the National Institutes of Health (NIH),* grant applications for research on strategies for germ-line modifications in the rat.

Rats are widely used as scientific models of human physiology because of several unique characteristics including size, extensive phenotype data, and relevance to many aspects of human biology. They also provide very important and useful models in the areas of neurobehavior and addiction, and human arthritis and related autoimmune diseases. Because of the significant use of rat models in cardiovascular biology, renal and pulmonary disease, reproduction, neurobiology, immunology, cancer, diabetes, arthritis and autoimmune disease, and endocrinology, the ability to manipulate the rat genome is important.

Potential areas of research include: strategies for culturing pluripotent rat embryonic stem cells to allow genetic manipulation and to create rats with germ-line transmission of genetic modifications; development of alternative technologies to create null mutations or gene placement in the rat; development of cost-effective nuclear transfer procedures in the rat; studies that demonstrate mutation transfer to rat stem cells or other cells for transfer into embryos or germ cells; and methods for targeting engineered introns into rat chromosomal DNA to support the study of gene function.

APPLICATION RECEIPT DATES: October 1, 2001; October 1, 2002; and October 1, 2003.

For more information, potential applicants should contact Dr. Arlene Chiu, Program Director, Repair and Plasticity Cluster, NINDS, Neuroscience Center, 6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 2206, Bethesda, MD 20892; telephone: (301) 496-1447; fax: (301) 480-1080; email: chiua@ninds.nih.gov.

*For a full list of supporting NIH components and a more detailed description of this program announcement, please visit the NIH web site at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-01-077.html.