Pair Of Grants Aid Business, Chemistry/ Biochemistry Research

March 23, 2010

NSF grant awarded to study entrepreneurial behavior

The National Science Foundation awarded a $394,654 Innovation and Organizational Sciences Program Grant to Baylor University to fund research that explores the impact of religious communities on entrepreneurial behavior.

"We're very pleased to receive a grant of this size in support of exploring the role of faith in entrepreneurship," Associate Professor in the Department of Management and Entrepreneurship Mitchell J. Neubert said. "A vital and enduring entrepreneurial spirit is essential for a robust economy."

The research project, "National Study of Entrepreneurial Behavior, Regulatory Focus, and Religion," is under the direction of Neubert, as well as, sociology faculty members Kevin D. Dougherty and Jerry Z. Park.

Over three years, the team will test the extent to which specific values and practices within religious communities are conducive to heightened entrepreneurial activity by conducting a national survey of working adults and case studies of eight religious communities.

Hankamer School of Business' Associate Dean of Faculty Development Jeff Tanner said this is one of the largest research grants secured by a business school faculty member.

"When others are willing to invest in our faculty through such grants, they recognize that we have faculty who are doing great work," Tanner said.

The results have the potential to enhance theory in promoting entrepreneurship. It also provides the basis to encourage religious communities to promote entrepreneurial behavior that is essential for a thriving economy.

Researchers to investigate cancer fighting compounds

Two Baylor University researchers have received a $200,000 grant from the Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) to study a series of compounds that could be toxic against human cancer cells.

The grant, which is part of $3 billion in cancer research grants the state will award during the next decade, will allow Dr. Kevin Pinney and Dr. Mary Lynn Trawick, both professors of chemistry and biochemistry at Baylor, to study the chemistry, biochemistry and cell biology associated with the new potential anticancer compounds that have recently emerged from Baylor's ongoing cancer research program.

"We will be studying the cell mechanism of these compounds to see just how potent they are to cancer cells which could eventually lead to new drug discovery," Trawick said. "Any time you deal with research focused on major 

diseases, like cancer, it has far-reaching implications in terms of potential benefit for society."

Additionally, a portion of the grant will fund a research consortium with collaborators at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, specifically tumor imaging studies using these compounds.

The $3 billion in expected funding over the next decade makes Texas the second-largest grantor of cancer research money in the country, behind only the National Cancer Institute.