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Faculty Research Grants

PROGRAM GOALS

This program supports faculty/student collaborative research at Hope in the nine HHMI 2012 departments.  All funded projects must support the overall goals of the Hope HHMI 2012 program, which is to help develop future STEM research leaders. Preference will be given to projects that include explicit connections to the HHMI 2012 program components (course-based research experience program, the bridge program and the CSI program), though research with undergraduate collaborators is the minimum qualifying criterion.

Funding details

This program has $30,000/year for each of the four years of the HHMI 2012 grant period. At least two awards will be made each year. Applications are due November 1 in November 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Check out the program guidelines and application requirements webpage for more details

Current Recipients

2014 Awards

Dr. Joseph Stukey and Dr. Virginia McDonough: "Discovery and Functional Investigation of Cytotoxic Phage Genes, a Faculty-Student Collarborative Project"

Dr. Emilie Dykstra Goris: "Oxytocin Receptor Gene as a Candidate Gene Apathy Among Persons with Alzheimer Disease"

Matthew Smith: "Thermally Reversible Polymers for Patterning Self-Oscillating Gels"

Dr. Edward Hansen: "International Research Experience for Hope Students: Geologic Mapping in Holland Province, Sweden"

Brian Yurk and Greg Murray: "Modeling Rainforest Pioneer Populations in Treefall Gaps of the Monteverde, Costa Rica Cloud Forest"

2013 Awards

Dr. Kenneth Brown and Dr. Elizabeth Sanford , Department of Chemistry, "The Development of an Electrochemical Array for Sensing Technology", full proposal

Abstract:
An artificial or electronic tongue is an electrochemical array of nonspecific sensors that measure responses to a liquid medium. In the past 15 years techniques in chemistry,molecular biology and computing have advanced enough that electronic or artificial tongues have been prepared and some have even been commercialized. That broad array of responses is then processed based on pattern recognition and/or multivariate data analysis to identify the substance. This data analysis of electrochemical measurements is called chemometrics. To make the biological analogy the electrochemical sensors are the physical tongue and the data analysis is the brain. Together they can taste artificially. It is our desire to develop electrochemical sensors that can be used as artificial tongues when analyzed using chemometrics by preparing functionalized ethylenedioxythiophene (EDOT) films on electrodes and then measuring their response to different stimuli and analyzing the data using known chemometric processes.

Dr. Michael Jipping, Department of Computer Science, "Augmented Reality Using Structural Identificaiton on Mobile Phones". full proposal

Abstract:
Augmented reality (AR) is the process of adding or accessing information on top of realtime physical scenes. Sports coverage is a simple example of AR; football coverage is often broadcast with colored lines and measurements superimposed on the field. AR is often dependent on proprietary systems using larger computers, but efforts are currently underway to bring AR to mobile devices. This project will accomplish this and build a framework so such a system can be used openly by everyone to combine various types of information with AR algorithms. The project specified here is one that (1) investigates methods to identify physical surroundings in realtime and (2) builds this capability into a system that allows information to be added to the realtime analysis. The key to this project is that the result of this research will be an open source system that will support the creation of augmented reality system that will run on a smartphone platform. There are two expected outcomes from this project. First, we will develop a software system and programming interface that will recognize physical surroundings, specifically buildings and architectural structures, in realtime on a smartphone using builtin sensors and realtime video. Second, we will begin to build a framework for adding information to this physical object recognition. This framework will most likely take the form of a system of Web pages through which information can be assembled, then made accessible to the AR system on the mobile device.

Dr. Jianhua Li, Dr. Kenneth Brown and Dr. Airat Bekmetjiv, Departments of Biology, Chemistry, & Mathematics, "Exploring the Association of Rapid Diversification of Maple Lineages and the Diversity of Protective Pigments". full proposal

Abstract:
Maples are an important tree group in the Northern Hemisphere with the center of diversitybin China, and several unique species in Europe, the Middle East, Japan, and North America. Albeit with a long history of study, our understanding of the natural history of maples remains limited; many fundamental questions have not been answered with satisfaction. For example, where and when did maples originate? how did maples migrate throughout the Northern Hemisphere? what are the evolutionary relationships among major groups of maples? and what are the temporal patterns of and causes for the diversification of maple lineages? Studies of the fossil records have led to the RD (rapid diversification) hypothesis that maple lineages may have diversified rapidly within a short time span by the Mid-Eocene. Recent molecular analyses using less than 5,000 data points have not provided enough information to establish a wellsupported phylogenetic framework. The lack of the framework hampers our ability to test the RD hypothesis. Therefore, the first objective of the proposed research is to establish the phylogenetic framework using plastid genome sequences with over 100,000 data points. Maples are well known for their beautiful foliage in the spring and fall due to the presence of colorful pigments (xanthophylls and anthocyanins). Because of their protective function against environmental factors (e.g., drought, excessive sunlight, and herbivores), the pigments provide adaptive advantages to plants, thus promoting lineage RD. Based on this, we propose the CP (colorful pigments) hypothesis that colorful pigments may have played an important role in the rapid radiation of maple lineages. In the proposed research, we will test the CP hypothesis based on chemical determination of the pigment diversity and quantitative analysis of the association between the diversity of colorful pigments and the lineage diversification. The solid phylogenetic framework will also provide answers to the other fundamental questions about the natural history of maples in the world. The interdisciplinary project will for the first time examine the potential association of pigment production and adaptive radiation of maples in the world. We will crosstrain students in biology, chemistry, and mathematics. The successful implementation of the project will provide materials and protocols for developing a research-based, interdisciplinary course. In addition, we will present our results to the scientific communities via professionalmeetings and peer reviewed publications as well as to the general public via talks and websites.

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