The National Biomedical Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) Center at the Medical College of Wisconsin has received a five-year, $5.66 million renewal grant from the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering. The EPR Center, in the department of biophysics, was established in 1976 and is classified as a "Biomedical Technology Resource Center (BTRC).” It is one of eight major federally-designated research centers at the College.
The renewal, which covers direct and indirect costs from April 1, 2008, to March 31, 2013, represents years 32 to 36 of the Center's BTRC funding.
James S. Hyde, Ph.D., professor of biophysics and director of the Center, is principal investigator for the grant, which has served as a core source of funding helping leverage other funding initiatives and research collaborations.
In what is regarded as one of the strongest EPR groups in the world, Dr. Hyde leads a group of distinguished electrical engineers in technology research and development of novel analytical instrumentation for EPR spectroscopy, an essential tool for biophysics researchers worldwide.
"Biotechnology research grants support novel, cutting-edge, multidisciplinary technology-development programs—each of which focuses on an experimental technology and serves the needs of a large, broadly based community of users,” says Dr. Hyde. "Technology research and development core projects are key to successfully securing this support. They must be at the cutting-edge of the specific research and development area, with the translational goal of increasing the usefulness of the technology in biomedical research.”
Among Medical College faculty researchers using EPR are, Balaraman Kalyanaraman, Ph.D., professor and chairman of biophysics, and professors Neil Hogg, PhD; Joy Joseph, PhD, and Jeannette Vasquez-Vivar, Ph.D., who are using EPR to study the role of oxygen radicals in normal and diseased tissues in the Free Radical Research Center directed by Dr. Kalyanaraman, which is closely linked to the EPR Center.
Professors Candice S. Klug, Ph.D. and Jimmy B. Felix, Ph.D, carry out studies of molecular structure and dynamics of membrane-bound proteins using spin-labeling methods, another major application of EPR spectroscopy.
Professors William E. Antholine, PhD, and Brian Bennett PhD, use EPR spectroscopy to study the roles of transition metals in mediating biochemical reactions, and professor Witold Karol Subczynski, PhD, uses it to study oxygen transport in membranes—particularly of the lens of the eye.