DOE EPSCoR Initiative in Structural and computational Biology/Bioinformatics Page: 2 of 92
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The overall goal of the DOE EPSCoR Initiative in Structural and Computational Biology was to
enhance the competiveness of Vermont research in these scientific areas. To develop self-
sustaining infrastructure, we increased the critical mass of faculty, developed shared resources
that made junior researchers more competitive for federal research grants, implemented
programs to train graduate and undergraduate students who participated in these research areas
and provided seed money for research projects. During the time period funded by this DOE
initiative: (1) four new faculty were recruited to the University of Vermont using DOE resources,
three in Computational Biology and one in Structural Biology; (2) technical support was
provided for the Computational and Structural Biology facilities; (3) twenty-two graduate
students were directly funded by fellowships; (4) fifteen undergraduate students were supported
during the summer; and (5) twenty-eight pilot projects were supported. Taken together these
dollars resulted in a plethora of published papers, many in high profile journals in the fields and
directly impacted competitive extramural funding based on structural or computational biology
resulting in 49 million dollars awarded in grants (Appendix I), a 600% return on investment by
DOE, the State and University.
RELATIONSHIP TO THE STATE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY RESEARCH PLAN
The infrastructure to support EPSCoR in the State of Vermont is well developed primarily
because of the EPSCoR awards initiated by the National Science Foundation in 1985. The State
of Vermont has been the recipient of EPSCoR grants not only from the National Science
Foundation but NASA, EPA, the NIH and the DOE. Vermont is a small state of only 600,000
people, with a single research university, the University of Vermont, allowing for a clear vision
of the route to research infrastructure enhancement. In 1992 the Vermont Technology Council
was started as a privately organized nonprofit group to bring together the high quality research of
(the State's) colleges and university with the entrepreneurial capacity of its business sector. In
1993 the Vermont Technology Council became the EPSCoR State Board and was charged with
developing a science and technology plan for the State as well as policy guidance to the Vermont
EPSCoR program. Dr. Christopher Allen was the Vermont State EPSCoR Director; Dr. Judith
VanHouten took over in 2005. Lillian Gamache is the EPSCoR Project Coordinator. When the
first science and technology plan was presented to the Governor in 1994, biotechnology was one
of the four areas of emphasis proposed, an emphasis in which Structural and Computational
Biology play a pivotal role. At the time there were no resources nor facilities in the State devoted
to these scientific areas. Because of this need the DOE EPSCoR Initiative in Structural and
Computational Biology was begun and supported by the State of Vermont.
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Wallace, Susan S. DOE EPSCoR Initiative in Structural and computational Biology/Bioinformatics, report, February 21, 2008; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc900631/m1/2/: accessed July 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.