Thursday, May 26, 2022 to Friday, May 27, 2022

Save the Date! University of Michigan Older Americans Independence Center - Annual Research Retreat

(All day)


From:  Neil Alexander MD - [email protected]

"I am writing to ask you to nominate individuals who might wish to participate in this research retreat. The goal of the research retreat is to assist talented junior faculty members to learn more about current problems and progress in this area, and to provide these scientists with some candid feedback about their own research ideas.  Relevant proposals could address (but are not limited to) important topics such as aging and oxidative stress, neurodegeneration, T-cell immunology, mitochondrial function, atherogenesis, and fatty acid metabolism.  Both invertebrate and vertebrate (especially rodent) models are relevant, as is research using clinical materials and bio-informatics approaches.  Based on the needs and interests of the junior faculty participants, we will invite external reviewers and speakers, to complement our local UM experts.  The program will also include presentations by UM OAIC senior faculty on topics related to research career development.

Much of the workshop will be devoted to “mock” study sections at which junior faculty members will have the opportunity to have their own grant proposals reviewed by their colleagues and by experienced senior faculty scholars. By reviewing projects of their peers, and hearing the critiques of experienced reviewers, participants get valuable insights into the peer review process that may help them improve their own grant-writing skills.  This is also an outstanding opportunity to network with both leading senior and “up-and-coming” junior researchers in biogerontology. Note that we frequently hear later how much the feedback and insight from these sessions helped lead to successful grant funding.

Each junior faculty member selected for this workshop will be expected to provide us by mid-April a copy of a grant proposal on which he or she wishes to receive advice.  Participants usually submit an application that is currently under review or in the late stages of preparation.  The form of the application is flexible (e.g. NIH, NSF, VA, foundation), but must contain at least five pages of scientific narrative describing the background, preliminary data, and research goals of the scientific program proposed.  An abstract and explanation of the type of proposal submitted are also required. Deadline for the application is May 2, 2022.

Each junior faculty participant will also receive from us, by mid-May, 2 - 3 applications submitted by his or her colleagues, and will be asked to prepare a short written critique that is intended to help the applicant, pointing out strengths and possible weaknesses of the research plan and its presentation.  These critiques will then form the basis for the mock study sections at the retreat itself.  Each participant will thus receive comments from at least two of the other participants, plus one or more senior faculty members who play a role in the study section process."

Aging and Disease: The Biogerontology Interface

The annual research retreat is in collaboration with the Michigan Alzheimer Disease Research Center.