Monthly Update – July 2023

Congratulations to our awardees! We are happy to announce the awardees for the Office of Research and Innovation (OORI) SBIR/STTR Award program. We received 7 proposal applications for which six were awarded: Professors Brian Applegate and John Oghalai (Keck): Aurisview: An OCT otoscopic system; Professor Denis Evseenko (Keck): Systemic drug candidate for multi-joint osteoarthritis and pain; Professor Mark Humayun (Keck): Automated, Large-Scale Manufacturing System to Support Broad Market Accessibility of a Bioengineered Stem-Cell Based Implant for the Treatment of Advanced Dry-Age Related Macular Degeneration; Professors Peter Kuhn and Jorge Nieva (Keck): Digital Tools Enabling Remote Clinical Trials; Professors Michelle Povinelli and Jayakanth Ravichandran (Viterbi): Investigation of deposition methods for microphotonic thermal control coatings; and Professors Peter Yingxiao Wang and Longwei Liu (Viterbi): Engineering Reversible and Inducible PSMA CAR T cells for Prostate Cancer Immunotherapy.

Navigating Research and Scholarship at USC: Whether you’re new or need a refresher, faculty, staff, postdocs, PhD students, and graduate students are invited to attend this year’s event on Friday, August 18 from 9 AM PDT to 12 PM PDT via Zoom. We’ve prepared an exciting and informative program on the latest and greatest resources and support available at USC to help you conduct research and navigate scholarship. See the agenda and register here.

Call for nominations – Associates Award for Creativity in Research and Scholarship: The USC Associates Awards are the highest honors the university can bestow on its members for their distinguished achievements. Please submit your nominations by September 25th. For program and nomination information, click here

In the News! Click here for our latest feature on OORI’s President’s Sustainability Awardees.

Research and Scholarship Training Workshops: Our fall 2023 workshops are now open for registration on our website! In September, JoAnne Goodnight — former SBIR/STTR Program Coordinator for the NIH — will host a series on the SBIR and STTR programs. Goodnight will provide attendees with a general overview, cover the requisite sections of the grant application and review process, and help you write your Specific Aims and Commercialization Plan. If you’d like to be updated about upcoming Center for Excellence in Research workshops, please join our mailing list. Do you have an idea for a workshop? We’d love to hear from you!

FEDERAL LANDSCAPE UPDATES: NSF has announced it will launch a new program specifically designed to study the field of research security. The Research on Research Security Program will help understand the full nature, scope, challenges and potential of this important field. The program will specifically fund projects that assess the methods for identifying research security risks, and the strategies for preventing and mitigating them. More details are available here.

HUMAN RESEARCH PROTECTION PROGRAM (HRPP): We are announcing a few efforts to align with the 2023-2024 academic year. We are removing the “Coded Data” application in iStar and the “Secondary Analysis” protocol template from our website. Instead, all studies that involve secondary research (data generated not-for-research purposes or for research purposes but being used for a secondary purpose) will now be submitted using our new Social Behavioral/Secondary Research Protocol. The changes in protocol template will be happening on August 1st and the changes in iStar will take place this month. Please do not use the Coded Data application in iStar. For exempt applications, we will be requiring that investigators upload Information Sheets and recruitment materials for review. Please refer to the new Social Behavioral/Secondary Research Protocol for further information. We have also updated our website to have a new Emergency Use/Expanded Access page as well as an IRB Members page. We are also on the verge of updating our HRPP dashboard with 2022-23 data and new metrics that will be updated on a monthly basis. There are more changes coming so stay tuned. We are holding firm at a 3 week wait time for exempt and expedited applications.

DEPARTMENT OF CONTRATS & GRANTS (DCG): Many sponsors require a Data Management Plan (DMP) as a key component of a proposal. DCG is pleased to announce a free, open source, community-supported application, DMPTool, to assist users in preparing a DMP.  The tool provides a click-through wizard to create a DMP based on specific sponsor requirements. The DMPTool maintains sponsor DMP templates, however, researchers should also review the solicitation, sponsor policy, and consult with their DCG Officer for guidance.

In addition, a Supplier Contracts Quick User Guide and Webinar have been released to provide guidance and tips on how to establish Subawards and associated Supplier Contracts in Workday.  The new resources provide information on how to view, initiate and amend supplier contracts, and view supplier invoices in Workday.  For questions, please contact as directed below:

  • DCG Subaward Team – For questions regarding subaward agreements and modifications
  • Workday Helpdesk – For questions regarding Workday and/or the preparation of Supplier Contracts in Workday
  • Accounts Payable – For questions regarding payment of invoices

DEPARTMENT OF ANIMAL RESOURCES (DAR): We are gearing up for our AAALAC International Site Visit this fall. You may notice improvements and preventive maintenance occurring in the animal facility. If you bring research animals to the lab for experimental purposes, we will be reaching out to you to schedule a conversation with the site visitors. 

To improve communication about your animals’ care in the facilities our husbandry staff will now be sending summary emails each day of animal care issues that need your attention such as overcrowding, separations, deaths, etc. This is to minimize the number of emails sent, reducing administrative burden and increasing the attention on important animal care matters. 

To assure the quality of our services, DAR has also acquired new software that will internally allow us to monitor and track the cleaning and maintenance of animal rooms. No longer will paper forms be used to track the care services, but rather an electronic version will be used that can be accessed by research staff and supervisors of the facilities. Through the utilization of this software, you will be able to check on the care of your animals and receive communications, if desired, about their care and health. This is an amazing upgrade of our animal care program. 

For all other updates, please see