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Program Snapshot

Part of the Common Fund's High-Risk, High-Reward Research program, the Transformative Research Award supports exceptionally innovative, unconventional, paradigm-shifting research projects that are inherently risky and untested.


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The Need to Study Pathogen Growth In Vivo

Dianne Newman, a 2012 Transformative Researcher, measured the in vivo growth rate of Staphylococcus aureus in the sputum of pediatric patients with cystic fibrosis and discovered the bacteria is extremely heterogeneous with a generation time two orders of magnitude slower than when grown in the laboratory.
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Wake-Up Call to Drug Resistant Tuberculosis

Sanjay Jain, a 2009 New Innovator and 2014 Transformative Researcher, successfully treated a child with extensively drug-resistant TB in the United States. Treatment, though successful, was difficult even with vast resources available and serves as "a wake-up call to the realities of TB."

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mRNA Structure Rearrangement and Ribosome Movement

Joseph Puglisi, a 2011 Transformative Research awardee, determined why ribosomes translating a particular bacteriophage T4 mRNA bypass a region of 50 nucleotides and resume translating the 3’ of the gap. Puglisi provides a mechanistic and conformational framework for bypassing.
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Application Information

•  Open to individuals or teams at all career stages
•  No limits on budget requests
•  Find IC-specific guidelines for Clinical Research
•  Find an IC contact for Scientific Research
•  More information
Application Status
FY 2016 Closed


Dianne Newman Gives NIH Director's Wednesday Afternoon Lecture


Dianne Newman spoke at the January 13, 2016, NIH Director's Wednesday Afternoon Lecture on “The Importance of Growing Slowly: Roles for Redox Active “Antibiotics” in Microbial Survial.” Watch the Videocast.

Program Booklet  •  Abstracts  •  Photos Exit Disclaimer  •  Videocasts for Day 1Day 2, and Day 3

Edward Boyden and Karl Deisseroth Receive 2016 Life Sciences Breakthrough Prize


Edward Boyden (2007 New Innovator, 2012 and 2013 Transformative Research, and 2013 Pioneer awardee) and Karl Deisseroth (2005 Pioneer and 2012 Transformative Research awardee) were awarded $3 million each for the 2016 Breakthrough Prize in Life SciencesExit Disclaimer

Child with Drug-Resistant TB Successfully Treated


Sanjay Jain, a 2014 awardee, successfully treated a 2-year old child with a highly virulent form of tuberculosis known as extensively drug-resistant (XDR) TB. The case is the first detailed account of a young child in the United States being diagnosed and treated for XDR TB. The case is published online in the November 16 edition of The Lancet Infectious Diseases. Read more at the Washington Post Exit Disclaimer.

View Awardee Bios  •  Read Press Release

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