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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Awardee:UNITED TRIBES TECHNICAL COLLEGE
Doing Business As Name:United Tribes Technical College
PD/PI:
  • Mandy J Guinn
  • (701) 255-3285
  • mguinn@uttc.edu
Award Date:07/20/2021
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 199,796
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 199,796
  • FY 2021=$199,796
Start Date:08/01/2021
End Date:07/31/2023
Transaction Type:Grant
Agency:NSF
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.076
Primary Program Source:040106 NSF Education & Human Resource
Award Title or Description:Genomic and Evolutionary Responses of Bat Populations to White Nose Syndrome
Federal Award ID Number:2113365
DUNS ID:076517473
Parent DUNS ID:040324332
Program:Tribal College & Univers Prog
Program Officer:
  • Regina Sievert
  • (703) 292-2808
  • rsievert@nsf.gov

Awardee Location

Street:3315 University Drive
City:Bismarck
State:ND
ZIP:58504-7565
County:Bismarck
Country:US
Awardee Cong. District:00

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:United Tribes Technical College
Street:3315 University Dr.
City:Bismarck
State:ND
ZIP:58504-7565
County:Bismarck
Country:US
Cong. District:00

Abstract at Time of Award

A goal of the Tribal Colleges and Universities Program (TCUP) is to increase the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) instructional and research capacities of specific institutions of higher education that serve the Nation's Indigenous students. Expanding the STEM curricular offerings at these institutions increases the opportunities for their students to pursue challenging, rewarding careers in STEM fields, provides for research studies in areas that may be culturally significant, and encourages a community and generational appreciation for science and mathematics education. This project, titled “Genomic and Evolutionary Responses of Bat Populations to White Nose Syndrome” directly aligns with that goal. Conducted by faculty at United Tribes Technical College (UTTC), the project investigates the effects of exposure to White Nose Syndrome (WNS) on the genetic variation of bats in North Dakota and the Great Plains. Bats play key roles in ecosystems and their populations have been adversely affected by WNS globally. This study aims to generate important information for preserving this important and unique species. In addition to conducting socially significant research, the project enhances the college’s research capacity and engages minority undergraduate students in research and training opportunities that increase their familiarity with field and laboratory research methods. Further, findings from the study will be integrated into undergraduate STEM courses at UTTC. The project will significantly impact the understanding of the host’s response to WNS through three key and interconnected objectives to 1) complete a phylogenetic analysis to distinguish subspecies relationships and delineation across the Northern Great Plains; 2) compare transcriptome-wide changes in infected vs. non-infected tissue in Myotis lucifugus; and 3) conduct a genome-wide scan to identify allele frequency differences between survivors and non-survivors and reveal potential selection pressure in populations exposed to WNS. Data generated will be used to test whether there is overlap between genes whose expression is altered by WNS and genes subject to natural selection. It is expected a subset of genes involved in physiological and immunological responses to WNS will also exhibit evidence of selection, with protective alleles found at a higher frequency in survivors versus non-survivors. This project will lay the foundation to implement a long-term, sustainable genomic and evolutionary biology research program at UTTC. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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