UAF Research Grants & Awards$300,000 investment in junior faculty yields more than $5 million in new research funding.
Since 1986, The University of Arizona Foundation has partnered with UA researchers to secure funds for their work. The grants, awarded in increments of up to $10,000, allow a diverse spectrum of faculty interests and ideas to come to life.
Over a two-year period, $300,000 in UAF grant funding resulted in more than $5 million in external support for UA faculty researchers. The funding advances the UA in a variety of ways – from launching pilot projects to enabling the continuation of existing research.
If Dr. Ricardo Sanfelice gets his way, robotic and autonomous vehicles will be a huge part of the future of defense and security. Sanfelice, an assistant professor in the UA department of aerospace and mechanical engineering, is using his small research grant to focus on developing a systematic platform to produce reliable control of groups of autonomous vehicles. He hopes for his research to be applied to future defense systems.
“This grant has enabled me to purchase additional equipment and support two students to build a testbed for indoor automatic control of autonomous vehicles and robotics,” Sanfelice said. “The grants program promotes quality and cutting-edge research within the University.”
Fighting Cystic Fibrosis
Cystic fibrosis, a chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive systems of thousands of Americans each year, could be better diagnosed and treated as a result of research by Dr. Eric Snyder.
Snyder is an assistant professor of pharmacy practice and science in the UA College of Pharmacy. He received small grant funding to study the defective gene and its proteins that cause the disease, and has plans for non-invasive assessment and treatment of patients.
World Leaders Gather for Water Symposium
Dr. Sharon Megdal, director of the UA Water Resources Research Center, used her independent grant funding for an international symposium and workshop on water policy in semi-arid regions. The workshop addressed critical water resource management challenges in Arizona, Israel and Palestine. It called for scientific diplomacy and for leaders and speakers from each of the regions to collaborate toward solutions.
“Due to the important role of water and the sensitivity of the political situation in the Middle East, The University of Arizona is being recognized for the potential of this workshop to promote peace through ‘science diplomacy’,” Megdal said.
Migraines affect millions of Americans each year. The cause of these debilitating headaches is still a mystery to researchers and physicians, and treatment is hit-or-miss at best.
That’s why Dr. Greg Dussor, an assistant professor in the pharmacology department at the UA, plans to use his small grant funding to study a migraine’s effect on specific areas of the brain. Dussor will induce migraines in lab rats in order to study images of these areas.
“These kinds of imaging experiments are expensive to perform and we would not be able to do them without the help of the UAF’s Small Research Grants Program,” Dussor said. "With this funding, we hope to be able to make significant progress in finding causes of and treatment for migraine headaches."