Cores and Infrastructure Grants
The John A. Burns School of Medicine is committed to the support and enhancement of crucial cores to encourage research. The preeminent goal of a core is to provide excellent service to a growing cadre of investigators from an enlarging circle of departments and institutions. Cores aim to maintain growth and enhance sustainability of core services. Most cores have three primary goals: service, teaching, and creation of new knowledge. Each core provides access to the latest techniques required by investigators to support hypothesis-driven research. Cores develop and implement training and education workshops. Cores also develop innovative and improved techniques, new technologies or applications of expertise in its field. By centralizing services and resources within cores, researchers are more efficiently served and the use of equipment is maximized. Through the triad of service, education, and innovation, cores support investigators at the university and the wider research community in conducting research that seeks to gain new knowledge about diseases and facilitate translation.
Cores located at Kakaʻako
ABSL-3/BSL-3 Biocontainment Core
The Pacific Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases Research provides an ABSL-3/BSL-3 Biocontainment Core. Research on microbial agents, which cause lethal diseases in humans and for which effective drugs or preventive vaccines are not available, must be conducted by well-trained investigators in specially built, well-maintained laboratories. The BSL-3/ABSL-3 Biocontainment Core encourages investigators at the university and the wider research community.
Bioinformatics Core Facility
The Bioinformatics Core Facility serves as a centralized resource for providing expert and timely bioinformatics consulting, analysis, collaborative research, management, and training solutions for high-throughput data. The data include different kinds of “omics” data (e.g., genomics, transcriptomics, epigenomes, proteomics, metabolomics, metagenomics data), which are generated from a variety of platforms such as PCR, microarray, NGS, mass-spec, and so on. The core provides a high-level expertise in bioinformatics, ensuring the support needed to design, conduct, analyze, interpret and manage results requiring or facilitated by informatics applications. Bioinformatics support will be integrated into all phases of basic, clinical and translational research through a coordinated program of quantitative health sciences consultation and analysis.
The Bioinformatics Core Facility aims to build and maintain an infrastructure that enables the application of strong bioinformatics solutions with a measurable impact on the ability of JABSOM and UH investigators to both publish their work and obtain new funding.
The University of Hawaiʻi Biorepository is a non-commercial, NIH-sponsored, core facility that provides biomedical researchers restricted access to human biological samples and clinical data. The Biorepository has three major resources: Human Reproductive Biospecimen Repository, Comprehensive Human Organ and Tissue Bank, and an in vivo Model Resource. The ability to move research into human tissues increases the direct human relevance and applicability of that research. The Biorepository core is the only fully inclusive human tissue biorepository in the State of Hawaiʻi, providing a wide range of fresh-frozen human tissues or subcellular tissue fractions. The tissue and extracts in the Core are derived from our unique population of Hawaiian/part-Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Vietnamese, Hispanic, Caucasian and African-Americans. This core is able to collect comparatively large numbers of samples from minority donors that allow for appropriate powering of studies in minority health.
Biostatistics Core Facility
A strong research design and quantitative support play a critical role in the long-term success of clinical and translational research and education enterprises. Current research studies involve complex study design and generate complicated multivariate data, which require quantitative expertise. The Biostatistics Core Facility provides biostatistical and quantitative health collaboration and research support to basic science, clinical, and translational investigators. The office specializes in study design and data analysis, participates in grant proposal development, conducts methodology research, and provides education in biostatistics and data management areas.
Contact: John Chen, PhD | firstname.lastname@example.org | (808) 692-1814
The Genomics and Bioinformatics Shared Resource (GBSR) offers a central service that uses cutting-edge and high-throughput genomic technologies combined with expert data analysis. The principal goal for the GBSR is to provide timely, affordable, high quality genomic analyses and a wide range of bioinformatic services with a fast turnaround, as well as technical and scientific consultation, collaboration and initial data interpretation.
Contact for Genomics: Maarit Tiirikainen, PhD |email@example.com | (808) 440-4570
Contact for Bioinformatics: Youping Deng, PhD |firstname.lastname@example.org | (808) 692-1664
The Histopathology Core at the John A. Burns School of Medicine is supported with grants from the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities and the National Institute of General Medical Sciences. This core provides routine histology processing, special stains and immunohistological techniques. The core also provides technical assistance, training, and consultation in histological techniques to staff, students, and investigators throughout the University on a cost-recovery basis.
Contact: Mariana Gerschenson, PhD |email@example.com | (808) 692-1519
Microscopy – Imaging Core
The Microscopy and Imaging Core offers access to a wide variety of conventional and confocal microscopes, in addition to optical preclinical imaging instrumentation. Our dedicated staff provides technical assistance, training, and consultation to users of all levels of experience. The core’s instrumentation is located in the JABSOM Biosciences Building on the Kaka’ako Health Sciences Campus. It is open to investigators throughout the University on a cost-recovery basis.
Molecular and Cellular Immunology Core
The Pacific Center for Emerging Infectious Diseases Research provides a Molecular and Cellular Immunology Core that provides the sole resource for flow cytometry, cell sorting and state-of-the-art immunological services in Hawaiʻi. Emphasis has also been applied to developing new or customized immunological methods for core users. In addition, regularly scheduled training sessions are held to enrich the educational and mentoring experience for investigators, faculty and students across the university and broader research community.
Contact: George Hui, PhD | firstname.lastname@example.org | (808) 692-1609
Murine Behavioral and Metabolic Research Support Facility
The Behavioral component of this facility provides expertise and equipment for evaluation of learning and memory, emotion and stress-related behaviors in mice, via two multi-purpose modular behavior assessment systems consisting of 9 behavioral assessment paradigms each. The Metabolic components includes four metabolic cage systems for monitoring respiratory metabolism and energy expenditure in animal models of diabetes, metabolic syndrome and other conditions that alter metabolism. Multiple murine temperature probes are available for implantation and use in conjunction with the metabolic cages or separately.
Murine Cardiovascular Phenotyping Core
The Center for Cardiovascular Research provides a Murine Cardiovascular Phenotyping Core for the use of investigators at the University, and by special arrangement, for investigators anywhere in Hawaiʻi. This core can provide murine echocardiography, blood pressure determinations, surgical procedures and phlebotomy, as well as assistance with mouse husbandry and genotyping.
JABSOM cores not physically located at Kakaʻako
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Core
The Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Research Center is located at The Queen’s Medical Center. Housed there is a 3 Tesla MRI Scanner that is dedicated to basic and clinical research. The RCMI MRI Core operates through The Queen’s MRI Research Center to provide technical support and training for clinical investigators, in particular those at the junior level, and allow support of pilot studies and studies with new technical approaches to investigate diseases that disproportionately impact minority populations as health disparities.
The Transgenic and Embryonic Stem Cell Gene Targeting Core is a state-of-the-art facility with the expertise in the production of genetically altered subjects. Transgenic subjects carrying new or novel genes are created by microinjection of DNA into the pronuclei of fertilized eggs. In this core, highly experienced personnel produce transgenic and knock-out subjects for UH investigators at a very reasonable cost and with very short lead times. The basic services of the Transgenic Core facility are DNA Injection, Embryonic Stem Cell Injection, and Embryo Freezing. In addition to these services, the Transgenic Core Facility offers various techniques to the research community including Embryo Culture, Embryo Transfer, Embryo Micromanipulation, Mouse In Vitro Fertilization, and Mouse Cloning Services.
The research capacity at the John A. Burns School of Medicine has benefited by large investments from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a federal funding agency, through infrastructure-building grants. General descriptions of the infrastructure grants successfully awarded to our research faculty and medical school are below.
Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) augment and strengthen institutional biomedical research capabilities by expanding and developing biomedical faculty research capability through support of a multidisciplinary center, led by a peer-reviewed, NIH-funded investigator with expertise central to the theme. Hawaiʻi has been fortunate to have three COBREs with the themes of Cardiovascular Research, Infectious Diseases, and Fertilization and early development. Through these infrastructure-building grants, the NIH has made a sizable investment into developing the research capacity within our institution.
IDeA Networks of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) is a statewide grant program involving most of the undergraduate-based institutions and nearly all of the community colleges in Hawaiʻi. The core mission of INBRE is to get students involved in biomedical research right from the beginning of their college experience. INBRE also supports a cadre of young investigators as sites for the INBRE intern experience.
The NIH has made other significant contributions to our institution’s research capacity through the Research Centers in Minority Institutions (RCMI) Program, which develops and strengthens the research infrastructure of minority institutions by expanding human and physical resources for conducting basic, clinical, and translational research. It provides grants to institutions that award doctoral degrees in the health professions or health-related sciences and have a significant enrollment of students from racial and ethnic minority groups that are underrepresented in biomedical sciences. The RCMI program serves the dual purpose of bringing more racial and ethnic minority scientists into mainstream research and promoting minority health research because many of the investigators at RCMI institutions study diseases that disproportionately affect minority populations. Hawaiʻi is fortunate for the support of its RCMI Bioscience Research Infrastructure Development for Grant Enhancement and Success (BRIDGES), Multidisciplinary And Translational Research Infrastructure Expansion (Rmatrix), and Translastional Research Network (RTRN) programs.