The university has been awarded over $20 million in federal stimulus funding to support the research efforts of 50 faculty members at the Georgetown University Medical Center and on the main campus, it announced in a press release on Jan. 5.

The grants, many of which will be distributed over the next two years, have been organized as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and originate from a range of national institutions including the Department of Education, the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

This unprecedented increase in research funding to the university has been warmly welcomed by the faculty.

Howard Federoff, executive vice president for Health Sciences and executive dean of the School of Medicine, was granted $3.9 million for his research on developing treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

“These ARRA awards strengthen our world-class research and offer great potential for impacting public health,” Federoff said in a university statement.

While GUMC was allocated over $17 million of the stimulus funding, the main campus collected over $3 million of the grants, to be distributed to 11 faculty members. The remainder will be allocated to Federal Work Study grants.

Timothy Barbari, dean and associate provost for research, is optimistic that both undergraduates and graduates can benefit from the funding, which will also develop Georgetown’s research reputation.

“[Though such grants] have little impact on the number of courses taught, [they] can have an impact on course content when faculty introduce the latest research results into their existing courses,” Barbari wrote in an e-mail.

ore specific to undergraduates, the funding may result in increased research opportunities for undergraduates.

Radhakrishnan Padmanabhan, a professor in the department of microbiology and immunology, has been awarded with a two-year, $1.2 million grant for his research to develop antiviral therapeutics for the dengue virus, a human pathogen that affects 50 million people annually and is transmitted by mosquitoes in tropical and subtropical regions.

“[The funding] would give research training to undergraduate and graduate students in biomedical science,” Padmanabhan said.

Other grants have been awarded to Richard Weiss, a professor in the chemistry department, and Hongfang Liu, an assistant professor in the department of biostatistics, bioinformatics and biomathematics, among others.

According to a university statement, over 200 Georgetown grant proposals remain pending.”

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