$700k awarded to research projects in Puerto Rico
80% of funded projects were led by female researchers
In order to continue advancing research and economic development on the island, the Puerto Rico Science, Technology and Research Trust and its Research Grants Program recognizes researchers who received their Catalyzer Research Grant (CRG), awarding 10 $70K grants. In particular, the CRG provides bridge funding to help researchers position their R&D proposals competitively before submission, or resubmission, to private or federal agencies.
Once the funding opportunity was announced, the candidates went through a meticulous selection process. This Research Grants Program process is based on standard and recognized peer review procedures used by federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. By strictly adhering to a comprehensive review process that assesses the scientific merit of grant applications in a process that is fair, independent, expert-driven, and free from improper influence, the Trust is able to identify and fund the most promising research or development work.
“I congratulate and thank the researchers and all those who support them in the process of carrying out their various projects, which contribute so much to the development of Puerto Rico and the entire world. It is vital to continue investing in the knowledge economy, with a focus on life sciences, technology, innovation, and exports, with initiatives such as the “Catalyzer Research Grants Program”, to move faster towards what we want and promote – the production of more projects of research that increase the portfolio of intellectual property in Puerto Rico and our global competitiveness; and keep your wealth on the island,” said Manuel Cidre, secretary of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DEDC).
It should be noted that, of the ten funded projects, 8 of them are led by women. “It is the first time that 80% of our beneficiaries are women,” Maldonado said. The award-winning researchers were Julie Dutil, PhD., Bianca A. Torres Hernández, PhD., Umberto Ciri, PhD., Darlene Santiago, PhD., Magaly Martínez Ferrer, PhD., Carla Restrepo, PhD., Catalina I. Villamil, PhD., Joselyn Del Pilar Albadalejo, PhD., Andrés Cecchini, PhD., and Imilce A. Rodriguez Fernandez, PhD.
Among the projects financed, there are 8 projects from the University of Puerto Rico (3 Mayagüez Campus, 3 Medical Sciences Campus, 2 Río Piedras Campus), 1 project from Ponce Health Sciences University and a project from the Central University of the Caribbean. The investigations had a wide variety of topics, among which the following stood out: Breast Cancer, Microbiome, Offshore Wind Energy, Opioid Use Disorders, Prostate Cancer, Environmental Sciences, Evolutionary Changes and Genetic and Developmental Processes, Renewable Energy and Aerospace, among others.
For more information about the Trust’s Research Grants Program initiatives, you can access the Research Grants Program.
About the Science, Technology and Research Trust: The Science, Technology and Research Trust, as described in Public Law 214, is a non-profit organization created in 2004 to promote the participation and creation of jobs on the Island in the global economy of knowledge by promoting investment and financing of research and development of science and technology. Invests, facilitates, and develops capabilities that continuously advance the economy of Puerto Rico and the well-being of its citizens, through companies based on innovation, science and technology, and public health. With the goal that by 2022, Puerto Rico will be a center of global recognition. For more information: www.prsciencetrust.org