Summer Research Experiences Utilizing SPARC-Generated Resources

September 2019 Council

Lead Division/Office

DDN, DEM

Point(s) of Contact

David Saslowsky, Ph.D.

Executive Summary

The importance of peripheral nervous system regulation of organs and associated diseases of interest to NIDDK is increasingly evident, with expanding research activity in this space reflected by active, high profile NIH programs, such as SPARC (Stimulating Peripheral Activity to Relieve Conditions). This Common Fund Program supports multidisciplinary projects focused on understanding the neuroanatomy and neurobiology of various organs and one important output is the generation of detailed, interoperable, functional and anatomical neural circuit maps. These maps can serve as powerful discovery tools as well as robust training vehicles for early career stage investigators who are trying to formulate and establish their own interdisciplinary, NIDDK-relevant, research programs. This initiative would leverage NIDDK’s partnership with the SPARC program to provide resources for short-term, summer training experiences that would necessarily use SPARC datasets/maps/models in conjunction with didactic training and hands-on computational and/or ‘wet lab’ projects. Target participants would likely be graduate students and postdoctoral researchers with demonstrable exposure to relevant computational methodologies.