Notre Dame Faculty Reflect on Impact of CTSI Awards; New Grant Opportunities Available

The Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) is currently seeking applications for the Collaboration in Translational Research (CTR) Pilot Grant Program. The objective of the CTR pilot grant program is to foster and encourage collaboration across the Indiana CTSI partner institutions and to initiate or continue translational research projects that have very strong and immediate potential to develop into larger, externally funded research programs or generate novel intellectual property. The CTSI is a statewide research collaboration between Indiana University, Purdue University, and the University of Notre Dame that provides opportunities for researchers.

Two Notre Dame researchers study lab notes in an office

Several Notre Dame researchers have had success in securing funding through CTSI CTR grants and it is hoped that this number will continue to grow. William Phillip, assistant professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, reflected on his recent CTSI grant and said, “My research has been greatly impacted by the CTSI. Since 2012 I have worked with Bryan Bourdouris, assistant professor of chemical engineering at Purdue University, to develop next-generation membranes that will help to reduce the costs of purifying biopharmaceuticals.” Phillip continued, “In addition to the research experience, one of the most important elements of our funding was the opportunity that CTSI provided to us, two young investigators at the start of their careers, to establish a unique collaboration between Purdue and Notre Dame that will be more impactful than the sum its parts.”

Paul Helquist, professor and associate chair of chemistry and biochemistry, has also experienced success with the help of CTSI and other interdisciplinary funding, ranging from patents to FDA clinical trials for his work in drug discovery. When speaking about his CTR grant, which supported a collaboration with Jo Davisson, professor of medicinal chemistry and molecular pharmacology at Purdue University, he said, “By participating in projects like these I am able to discover so much more than if I was simply working on my own.” Helquist continued, “With the trend in funding moving away from grants for just PIs and towards collaborative research teams, the CTSI grants provide an ideal opportunity for Notre Dame researchers to develop new collaborations with partners throughout Indiana.”

For faculty who are interested in applying for the CTSI CTR Pilot grant, applications are due by Monday, March 9, 2015 at 4:00 p.m. EST. All projects should include participation by two or more principal investigators representing at least two of the sponsoring affiliates for this program.  More information can be found on

Deputy Director of the Indiana CTSI at Notre Dame, Richard Taylor, said, “I encourage all interested faculty to apply for this opportunity. The CTSI Collaboration in Translational Research Pilot Grant is an opportune way to explore new relationships with Indiana University and Purdue University researchers and develop impactful translational collaborations. I look forward to seeing the outcomes of these research partnerships.”

Established in 2008, the Indiana CTSI is supported by a $25 million Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS) of the National Institutions of Health, supplemented by nearly $60 million from the State of Indiana, the three member universities, and public and private partnerships. The Indiana CTSI is a member of a national network of 61 CTSA-funded organizations across the United States. In 2013, the Indiana CTSI received a competitive renewal providing an additional $30M to continue its efforts for the next five years.

Contact: Richard Taylor,

Originally published by Joanne Fahey at on February 18, 2015.