ASU Stem Cell Training and Research (ASUF 30000770)

Project: Research project

Project Details


ASU Stem Cell Training and Research (ASUF 30000770) Tools for Model Discovery, Validation and Selection in Neuroscience with NeuroML Building computational models is one of the best ways of furthering our understanding of both the normal function of the nervous system and the pathology associated with aging, neural trauma, or disease. Biophysically detailed models provide a framework for integrating data across spatial scales and for exploring hypotheses about the biological mechanisms underlying neuronal and network dynamics. However, as models increase in complexity, additional barriers emerge to the creation, validation, exchange and re-use of models. The NeuroML project aims to address these issues by providing a standard format for describing multiscale models in neuroscience. NeuroML is supported by over 30 tools and databases and is the basis for model exchange at Open Source Brain, where 374 users are collaborating on 57 public modeling projects. In spite of this promising movement toward model sharing in the neuroscience community, it is extremely rare to see a specific, rigorous statement of the criteria used for evaluating models during model development, and multiple models for the same ion channels and neurons are not compared for concordance with the same suite of experimental data. The overall goal of this project is to create a flexible infrastructure for assessing the scope and quality of computational models in neuroscience and to make this information broadly available to the community for a large class of models. Aim 1 focuses on enhancing existing tools to work together seamlessly for validation of NeuroML models against experimental data. Aim 2 concentrates on the development of a dedicated web portal, incorporation of automated model validation into existing model sharing platforms, and the creation of documentation, tutorials, forums and other outreach for promoting uptake and obtaining user feedback. Aim 3 includes testing of the validation tool chain in multiple large-scale neuronal network modeling environments. The proposed activities will build bridges that connect multiple, existing initiatives in support of model development, validation, exchange, selection, and re-use, and will integrate experimental data with modeling efforts for more efficiency, better transparency, and greater impact of computational models in neuroscience research. ASU Stem Cell Training and Research (STaR) Program Millions of people suffer from currently incurable diseases and injuries, such as cancer, Alzheimers disease, and spinal cord injury. Human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), which have the unique ability to generate all the mature cell types of the adult human body, have the potential to revolutionize the manner in which scientists and clinicians study and treat these devastating diseases. However, the progress in stem cell research at ASU that will lead to the development of such therapies, and to the emergence and growth of the stem cell industry in Arizona, will require the training of young scientists with specialized knowledge and skills, support of facilities to enable the pursuit of cutting-edge stem-cell based research, and education of the public about the potential impact of stem-cell based therapies. To that end, this proposal will support and enhance further development of existing stem cell training and research activities conducted by Dr. David Brafman to create the first comprehensive stem-cell based training and research program in Arizona. Specifically, this program will: (1) Establish a training program that combines coursework, practical laboratory training, and internship experience for the development of 20 highly qualified ASU graduates who will contribute to the advancement of stem cell research in Arizona, (2) Enhance current ASU facilities to provide students, staff, and faculty with the resources to conduct interdisciplinary research that will translate stem-cell based therapies from the laboratory to the clinic, and (3) Engage and excite the community about the innovative stem cell research being conducted at ASU. Overall, this proposal presents donors with the opportunity to position ASU as future global leader in transformative stem cell education, research, and outreach. Doctoral Dissertation Research: Reconstructing the Peopling of Pre-Columbian Puerto Rico through Ancient DNA Analysis
Effective start/end date3/15/168/12/18


  • Women and Philanthropy: $70,000.00


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