Two biomedical engineering professors are joining the standing groups of accomplished researchers who review applications for National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants.
Michelle LaPlaca was invited to serve on the Acute Neural Injury and Epilepsy Study Section, which primarily reviews patient-oriented research into central nervous system injuries caused by concussion, stroke, traumatic brain injury, epilepsy, and spinal cord injury. As a member of the Cellular and Molecular Technologies Study Section, Ankur Singh will consider applications focused on developing and applying new methods, tools, and techniques for studying cellular processes. LaPlaca is a professor and Singh is an associate professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory University.
“It’s truly an honor to serve the NIH. Membership on a study section is a major commitment of professional time and energy as well as a unique opportunity to contribute to the national biomedical research effort,” said Singh, who also is a Woodruff Faculty Fellow and a member of the faculty in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Tech.
The study sections review grant proposals and make recommendations to the agency’s national advisory council. Members are selected based on their research accomplishments and demonstrated expertise. Singh said the panels provide great value to biomedical research in the United States.
“Service on a study section also requires mature judgment and objectivity as well as the ability to work effectively in a group, which was quite attractive to me,” Singh said. “I look forward to serving the NIH and the research community in best possible ways.
LaPlaca’s work focuses on traumatic brain injury — understanding injury mechanisms to develop better diagnostics and strategies for protection and repair from neurological trauma.
Singh’s research centers on creating biomaterials-based “living” immune organoids or on-chip tissues that mimic lymph node structure and function with application to infectious diseases, inflammatory diseases, and cancer.
They’ll serve as members of the study sections for a four-year term.