The NIH Common Fund Program on Stimulating Peripheral Activity to Relieve Conditions (SPARC) has released new funding opportunity announcements.

Posted on November 19th, 2015 in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Hello NIF/SciCrunch Community! Please read this message from our colleagues at the NIH Common Fund SPARC Program staff regarding new funding opportunities!
“The NIH Common Fund Program on Stimulating Peripheral Activity to Relieve Conditions (SPARC) has released new funding opportunity announcements. These RFAs solicit applications that address two separate but interrelated research foci:
Comprehensive Functional Mapping of Neuroanatomy and Neurobiology of Organs – Projects that support a full, multi-expertise approach to understanding both afferent and efferent components of nervous system control of major organ function.  These large projects will comprehensively provide data for the detailed, predictive functional and anatomical neural circuit map for neural control of medically relevant functions of a specific organ and its functionally-associated structures (for example, the bladder and associated sphincter).
January 17, 2017; March 15, 2017; May 15, 2017; July 14, 2017; September 15, 2017; November 15, 2017; January 15, 2018.
Foundational Functional Mapping of Neuroanatomy and Neurobiology of Organs – Projects that focus on filling current knowledge gaps in order to provide the foundational functional neuroanatomy and neurobiology data for major organs, potentially leading to a subsequent large Comprehensive Functional Mapping project.
SPARC is uniquely positioned to serve as a community resource that provides the broader public and private research communities with the scientific foundation necessary to pilot new and/or improved closed-loop neuromodulation devices and stimulation protocols to treat diseases and conditions through precise neural control of peripheral end-organ system function. The SPARC program is comprised of four interrelated research components with joint aims to support multidisciplinary teams of investigators to deliver detailed, predictive, functional and anatomical neural circuit maps of the innervation of multiple major internal organs in humans. These FOAs serve as part of the SPARC program’s first phase by focusing on anatomical and functional mapping using current state-of-the-art technologies. It is anticipated that the resulting projects will enable later competitive high resolution mapping projects and pre-clinical testing for new therapies.
Detailed in the FOAs, the Other Transaction (OT) mechanisms will afford the program the agility necessary to make rapid progress toward program goals. In addition, the OT mechanisms will enable the SPARC Program Manager and funded awardees to quickly and fluidly incorporate relevant breakthroughs and discoveries, engage non-funded pioneers, and establish SPARC awardee collaborations and partnerships. For more detail on the management of SPARC Other Transaction awards visit our SPARC Other Transaction page. Guidelines for these OT processes are listed within the NIH Other Transaction Award Policy Guide for the SPARC Program. This document describes the various laws, regulations, guidelines and polices to which the SPARC program will adhere.
Please contact if you have any questions regarding these funding opportunities. In addition, please feel free to share this announcement with your colleagues.”

Funding Opportunity for Identification of Genetic and Genomic Variants by Next-Gen Sequencing in Non-human Animal Models (U01)

Posted on November 16th, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Greetings NIF/SciCrunch Community!

Check out this funding opportunity from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, NIH.

“Identification of Genetic and Genomic Variants by Next-Gen Sequencing in Non-human Animal Models (U01) – See more at: ?

The next deadline is March 1, 2016

Research Scope and Objectives
This announcement encourages applications for projects aimed at the discovery of gene variants in outbred or selectively bred non-human animals through the use of Next-Gen Sequencing technologies. The proposed projects should be based on data demonstrating the relevance of the traits to drug abuse behaviors and processes of addiction. Investigators may employ previously selectively bred animals, re-derived strains, strains selected for some specific new phenotypes, beginning with a novel progenitor population, or an outbred population. Vulnerability phenotypes, for purposes of this FOA, are defined as individual differences that convey increased propensity to acquire, maintain or escalate to uncontrollable, compulsive drug intake, or increased vulnerability to relapse to drug seeking and drug-taking following a period of abstinence. Vulnerability phenotypes may be defined behaviorally or neurobiologically, must have demonstrated heritability, and be suitable for mapping in outbred or selectively bred strains. The following are examples of vulnerability phenotypes that have been characterized behaviorally which would be appropriate for study; however, this is not an inclusive listing and there may be others:

· High drug sensitivity, reactivity or preference

· Preference or sensitivity for non-drug rewards

· Somatic and affective drug withdrawal

· Novelty preference or novelty seeking

· Increased incentive motivation for reward-related stimuli

· Sensitivity to develop escalation of drug taking

· Impulsivity

· Poor cognitive flexibility (e.g., reversal learning, set shifting, etc.)

· Resistance to punishment during drug-seeking

· Persistent responding in the absence of drug

· Heightened relapse and reinstatement

· Enhanced stress reactivity

· Disrupted circadian rhythms

Vulnerability phenotypes that have been identified by individual differences in neurobiological substrate or mechanisms (structural, functional, chemical) that can be genetically mapped are also appropriate.

Mapping of genetic modifiers of vulnerability phenotypes in knockout or knock-in animals, i.e. identification of gene variants that modify a drug abuse associated phenotype when a knockout or knock-in animal or defined mutation is bred into a different genetic background, is also responsive to this FOA.

If you are interested in submitting an application for the March 1, 2016 deadline.”

Click below to apply! ?


The SciCrunch/NIF Team


[EZID] Practical Hacking On Identifiers at BiOSphere 2 (PHOIBOS2), Feb. 17-19, 2015, Oracle, Arizona, USA

Posted on November 12th, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Greetings NIF/SciCrunch Community! Please check out this announcement below in regards to a three day PHOIBOS2 workshop at Biosphere 2 which will be located in Oracle, Arizona.

“In the era of big data and informatics, there is growing awareness among scientists and scientific data managers of the need for permanent, globally unique identifiers for both physical specimens and digital data, leading to the development of new systems for minting, tracking, resolving, and querying identifiers. However, existing identifier systems have not yet been put to the test with the types of very large, multidisciplinary datasets that loom on the horizon, and developing an identifier infrastructure for really big data (pre- and post-publication) is crucial next step.

During the three day PHOIBOS2 workshop at the world-renowned Biosphere 2 in Oracle, Arizona, identifier practitioners and data generators will come together to summarize the current state of the field, identify and elucidate the technical issues, and develop solutions. PHOIBOS2 will incorporate elements of a hackathon, but outputs may also include non-technical products like a draft proposal, a survey, or educational materials. The agenda for the meeting is modeled after the successful MIT Hacking Medicine, in which groups of participants are asked to identify a problem and articulate what a system that solved the problem would look like, including technologies, support material, and a business model. We aim to develop a vision of an identifier infrastructure that spans the entire data lifecycle in the context of very large, complex, multi-disciplinary, research-oriented datasets.

If you are a scientist, or user or developer of identifier systems, and would like to take part in this innovative experience, please complete the online application available here by November 30, 2015. The meeting is open to all, with room and board covered for up to 30 participants, and limited funding available to support travel costs, particularly for early career or under-represented participants. Funding requests will be considered in early December, after all applications are received.

This workshop is funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation, with logistical support provided by the iPlant Collaborative.”
Ramona L. Walls, Ph.D.
Senior Scientific Analyst
The iPlant Collaborative
Thomas J. Keating Bioresearch Building

Training Activity – Human Brain Project – Call for Applications

Posted on October 28th, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Hello NIF/SciCrunch Community!

Check out the Call for Applications that has recently been released by the Human Brain Project!

HBP_3rdWorkshopManchester_Call for Applications_V3

“This is the third and final workshop organised by the Human Brain Project Education Programme during its first phase, and will present thoughts on the emerging trends and directions we may expect in the next five to ten years. Amongst other topics, we will have presentations on:

- Future Developments in Theoretical Neurosicence!

- Gaute Einevoll (UMB)

- Future Developments in Supercomputer Technology! Thomas Lippert (FZ Jülich)

- Future Developments in Informatics Technology!

- Sean Hill (EPFL)

- Future Developments in Medical Informatics Technology! Richard Frackowiak (CHUV)

- Future Developments in Neuromorphic Technology! Karlheinz Meier (UHEI)

- Future Developments in Microprocessor Design! Steve Furber (UMAN)

- Future Developments in Neurorobotic Technology!

- Alois Knoll (TUM)#

- Future Developments in Brain Simulation!

- Felix Schürmann (EPFL)”

Click on the link above for more information!


The NIF/SciCrunch Team

NIF Events at SfN

Posted on October 5th, 2015 in News & Events, Uncategorized | No Comments »

NIF Events:


BANTER (it’s a party): NIF is one of the co-sponsors of the Banter event at SfN. Don’t miss it! @sfnbanter #sfnbanter

Location: Frontier, 1072 N. Milwaukee (Blue Line to Division)

Event Time: 9:30 PM


Poster Presentation: “Bringing knowledge to data: Visualizing coverage of the neuroscience data space in the Neuroscience Information Framework” *T. GILLESPIE, A. E. BANDROWSKI, J. S. GRETHE, M. E. MARTONE

Location: Poster 544.01 at DD37, Hall A

Presentation time: 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Presentation and Demo: “Research Resource ID’s and Annotating the Web” by Maryann Martone

Location: INCF Booth

Presentation and Demo Time: 1:30 PM – 3:15 PM

Related Events:


Using NEURON to Model Cells and Networks 9 a.m.–5 p.m.

Using the Neuroscience Gateway Portal (NSG) for 9–10:30 a.m.

Big Data Opportunities Using the NIMH Data Archive (NDA) 6:30–10 p.m.


Sunday, October 18

Neuroinformatics Social 6:45–8:45 p.m.

The NWB Neurophysiology Data Format (Alpha Version) 6:30–7:30 p.m.


Tuesday, October 20

Computational Neuroscience Social 6:45–8:45 p.m.

The BRAIN Initiative in 2015: Updates and Outreach Town Hall and Reception 6:30–8:30 p.m.

Text Mining Survey for Neuroscience

Posted on October 2nd, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Hello NIF Community!

Our friends at the National Center for Text Mining have passed a survey along to us that we thought we would share with you all! In the words of the Professor Sophia Ananiadou, Director of the National Centre for Text Mining, “We would deeply appreciate it if you would consider filling in the form at the link below. This will help us to better understand how we can develop text mining tools which will help those in the neuroscience community. This will not take longer than 10 mins of your time.”

If you have the time please feel free to fill out the survey. Click here for the survey link.


The NIF Team

NIF will be at SFN 2015!

Posted on October 1st, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Hello NIF Community!

The Neuroscience Information Framework will be at SFN 2015!

Attending the SFN meeting in Chicago?  Come see what’s new in NIF. The Neuroscience Information Framework will have a booth at the Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting in Chicago from October 17 – 21 at booth #2115. We will also have information and updates on the Research Resource Identification Initiative (#RRID) which is trying to help with the reproducibility of research. Also, stop by to learn how you can build your own customized data portal through SciCrunch, a new community focused data and resource portal. We will be presenting a poster detailing how NIF can be used to map the neuroscience landscape and how knowledge of a single biological system can be measured through frequency of occurrence using NIF’s standard ontology and data federation. NIF is co-sponsoring SFNBanter (@sfnbanter) and we have teamed up with for their sweepstakes in which someone will take home an Apple Watch! Check out the link here to register for that contest: Click here to register! 


NIF-Hypothesis join forces

Posted on October 1st, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

NIF is working with, a non-profit organization building an open annotation layer for the web.  With, users can add information to any web document, including scientific articles, through interactive annotations.  Annotations are distinct from most commenting systems in that they are anchored to individual words, phrases or sentences and displayed in context rather than at the end of the page.

NIF will be using to broadcast our considerable data holdings through so that links between articles and data are displayed with the article.  Currently, NIF uses the NIH Link Out Broker to provide information, for example, on antibodies used in an article or links to data.  These links are buried at the bottom of the abstract page in Pub Med.  With, wherever the article is read, NIF will be able to display these links to readers.

But that is in the future.  In the meanwhile, we’d like to help introduce the potential of web-based annotation to neuroscientists.  With, researchers can take notes on the web, share their knowledge with others or collaborate with colleagues.

As an incentive to try, we are offering all who attend the Society for Neuroscience meeting in Chicago the opportunity to annotate for the chance to win an Apple Watch! Visit the link to register for the contest. Click here to register!

Request for Input on the Science Drivers Requiring Capable Exascale High-Performance Computing

Posted on September 30th, 2015 in News & Events | No Comments »

Dear NIF/SciCrunch Community,

The Department of Energy, National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health are seeking your input to identify scientific research that would benefit from a greatly enhanced new generation of HPC computing technologies and architectures. Please see below for a message from Susan Gregurick, the Director of the Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology at the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, for further details.


Dear Colleagues,

I am reaching out to ask your help in defining scientific drivers that would require exascale High Performance Computing (HPC). You may know that on July 29, 2015, the White House issued an Executive Order establishing the National Strategic Computing Initiative as a government-wide effort to create a coordinated, cohesive, multi-agency strategy to maximize the benefits of HPC for the United States. In support of this initiative, the Department of Energy, National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health are seeking your input to identify scientific research that would benefit from a greatly enhanced new generation of HPC computing technologies and architectures. The request for information (RFI) (NOT-GM-15-122) asks for responses in scientific domains including the biomedical and physical sciences, mathematics, geosciences, energy sciences and engineering research.

We hope to hear from our research communities on topics that include:

· Research challenges that would need the projected 100-fold increase in application performance.

· Specific barriers in current HPC systems that limit scientific research.

· Capabilities needed for the data-intensive sciences.

· Additional barriers in such areas as training, workforce development or collaborative environments.

While this RFI invites comments on several specific topics, we would also welcome any comments that you feel are relevant to this initiative.

To respond to this RFI, send an email to by October 16.

Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) Study

Posted on September 25th, 2015 in News & Events, Uncategorized | No Comments »

Hello NIF Community!

The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) study intends to award funding to investigators interested in analyzing interactions between environmental and genetic factors contributing to development of autoimmunity and type 1 diabetes (T1D). See below for more details!


The NIF/SciCrunch Team


Dear All,
The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) study intends to award funding to investigators interested in analyzing interactions between environmental and genetic factors contributing to development of autoimmunity and type 1 diabetes (T1D). SNP data are available on nearly the entire TEDDY cohort. Microbiome, viral metagenomics, metabolomics, gene expression, proteomics, and dietary biomarkers data are available from the TEDDY case-control population. Additional data collected as a part of the TEDDY study include dietary intake, supplements, medications, parental education level, familial smoking habits, vaccinations, household exposures, illnesses, allergies, social groups, psychosocial stressors, life events, and more. Investigators should assemble a team that can design and conduct an analysis on the entire TEDDY cohort, the TEDDY case-control population, or both, depending on the question being addressed by the investigators.

Please see the attached RFP.

ITN ITN 16-05-MH TEDDY Data analysis final