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Funding News - Research Sought on Interactions Between Stem and Progenitor Cells and the Microenvironment In Vivo

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  • The information on this page is for historical and research purposes only.
  • For the most current NINDS funding announcements, please see the NINDS list of Active Funding Initiatives or Follow Us on Twitter for the latest funding news.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) invites grant applications for research on interactions between stem and progenitor cells and the microenvironment in vivo. This announcement is made together with 7 other components of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).*

The objective of this initiative is to encourage researchers to thoroughly explore and characterize the bi-directional communication between multipotent cells and the three-dimensional local milieu or niche that they encounter in vivo under normal and compromised states—such as with aging or following injury, disease, or drug exposure. Of particular interest is the rigorous characterization of how interactions with localized cues in space and time regulate stem cell survival, migration, replication, and plasticity in the nervous system and other parts of the body.

Areas of research interest include, but are not limited to: identification, localization, and comparison of known or novel cues within the developing, adult, and aging nervous system that influence the mitotic potential, cell cycle, and differentiation of stem and progenitor cells along specific lineages; characterization of the cell-extrinsic and cell-intrinsic signaling pathways and components involved in transducing the action of local cues on stem and progenitor cells in vivo; investigation of the causal relationship between site-specific changes of endogenous cues resulting from injury, disease, age, exposure to alcohol, drugs of treatment or abuse, and any resulting alterations of stem cell activity; evaluation of the effects of external factors such as stress, exercise, or enriched versus impoverished living conditions on the microenvironment within the host organism, and how these changes in microenvironment influence the behavior of stem cells at different periods throughout the lifespan of the organism; and development of assays facilitating the discovery of novel endogenous signals that modulate stem cell behavior and fate, as well as signals generated by stem cells that regulate components of the local host tissue.

For more information, potential applicants should contact Dr. David Owens, Program Director, Repair and Plasticity Cluster, NINDS, Neuroscience Center, 6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 2204, Bethesda, MD 20892; telephone:
301-496-1447; fax: 301-480-1080; e-mail:

*For a full list of supporting NIH components and a more detailed description of this program announcement, please visit the NIH web site at: