Understanding the Rules of Life: Epigenetics


Funding Opportunity ID: 322113
Opportunity Number: 20-512
Opportunity Title: Understanding the Rules of Life: Epigenetics
Opportunity Category: Discretionary
Opportunity Category Explanation:
Funding Instrument Type: Grant
Category of Funding Activity: Science and Technology and other Research and Development
Category Explanation:
CFDA Number(s): 47.041
Eligible Applicants: Others (see text field entitled “Additional Information on Eligibility” for clarification)
Additional Information on Eligibility: *Who May Submit Proposals: Proposals may only be submitted by the following: -Non-profit, non-academic organizations: Independent museums, observatories, research labs, professional societies and similar organizations in the U.S. associated with educational or research activities. -Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) – Two- and four-year IHEs (including community colleges) accredited in, and having a campus located in the US, acting on behalf of their faculty members.Special Instructions for International Branch Campuses of US IHEs: If the proposal includes funding to be provided to an international branch campus of a US institution of higher education (including through use of subawards and consultant arrangements), the proposer must explain the benefit(s) to the project of performance at the international branch campus, and justify why the project activities cannot be performed at the US campus.
Agency Code: NSF
Agency Name: National Science Foundation
Posted Date: Nov 02, 2019
Close Date: Feb 06, 2020
Last Updated Date: Nov 02, 2019
Award Ceiling: $0
Award Floor: $0
Estimated Total Program Funding: $15,000,000
Expected Number of Awards: 10
Description: In 2016, the National Science Foundation (NSF) unveiled a set of “Big Ideas,” 10 bold, long-term research and enabling ideas that identify areas for future investment at the frontiers of science and engineering (seehttps://www.nsf.gov/news/special_reports/big_ideas/index.jsp). The Big Ideas represent unique opportunities to position our Nation at the cutting edge of global science and engineering leadership by bringing together diverse disciplinary perspectives to support convergence research. As such, although when responding to this solicitation proposals must be submitted tothe Division of Emerging Frontiers in the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO/EF),upon receipt proposals will be managed by a cross-Directorate team of NSF Program Directors.A full list of the Understanding the Rules of Life awards can be found on theNSF Awards Search. The purpose of the Understanding the Rules of Life: Epigenetics (URoL:Epigenetics) program is to enable innovative research and to promote multidisciplinary education and workforce training in the broad area of epigenetics. The URoL:Epigenetics program is a widecollaborationacross Directorates/Offices within the National Science Foundation with a focus on understanding therelationshipbetween epigenetic mechanisms associated with environmental change, organismal phenotype, and resultant robustness and adaptability of organisms and populations. Understanding the Rules of Life (URoL): PredictingPhenotypeis one of NSF’s 10 Big Ideasand is focused on predicting the set of observable characteristics (phenotype) from the genetic makeup of the individual and the nature of its environment. The development of new research tools has revolutionized our ability to manipulate and investigate the genome and to measure multiple aspects ofbiological, physical, and social environments. The opportunity now is to assimilate this new information into causal, mechanistic, and/or predictive relationships among the genomic and epigenetic makeup, the environmental experience, and the phenotypic characteristics of biological systems. These relationships are the basis for the Rules of Life – the theoretical constructs that explain and predict the characteristics of living systems, from molecular and sub-cellular components, to cells, whole organisms, communities and biomes. The recognition that heritable phenotypic properties can occur without modification of an organism’s genome sequence is changing the understanding of the wayheritable traits come about and manifest themselves as observable phenotypes within a particularstaticor changing environmental context. The impact of epigenetic inheritance occurs at the molecular, cellular, and organismal scales, and may have profound consequencesfor the higher-order organization of living systems, including populations, communities, and ecosystems. Successful projects of the URoL:Epigenetics Program are expected to use complementary, interdisciplinary approaches to investigatehow epigenetic phenomena lead to emergent properties that explain the fundamental behavior of living systems.Ultimately, successful projectsshould identify general principles ("rules") that underlie biological phenomena within or across scales of size, complexity (e.g., molecular, cellular, organismal, population) and time (from sub-second to geologic) in taxa from anywhere within the tree of life, including humans.URoL:Epigenetics projects must integrate perspectives and research approaches from more than one research discipline (e.g.,biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering, geology, mathematics, physics, social and behavioral sciences).The interdisciplinary scope of URoL:Epigenetics projects also provides unique training and outreach possibilities to train the next generation of scientists in a diversity of approaches and to engage society more generally. The URoL:Epigenetics Program offers two submission tracks: Track 1 – for projects with a total budget of up to $500,000 and an award duration of up to 3 years, and Track 2 – for projects with a total budget of up to $3,000,000 and award duration of up to 5 years.
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