Research Incubator Awards

DIBS Research Incubator Awards provide up to $100,000 for one year (non-renewable) to support research projects involving interdisciplinary, collaborative brain science research within Duke. The projects must represent exceptional innovation and broad significance to the field. These awards are open to Duke faculty.

Projects must engage at least two faculty representing multiple fields or levels of analysis and bring together investigators from across the University whose individual programs of research are not already connected. Projects that include investigators from multiple schools within the University (e.g., School of Medicine, Arts and Sciences, Pratt School of Engineering, etc.) are encouraged.

See Awards Schedule & Application Form

DIBS Announces 2021-2022 Incubator Awards

Previous Awardees

Award Project Spotlights

Retinal Imaging ProjectRetinal Imaging Biomarkers for Alzheimer’s Disease

The same neuro-inflammatory injuries found in the brain affected by Alzheimer’s may also be seen in the retina, which allows a non-invasive examination. Using DIBS research dollars and other resources allowed the team to collect and analyze valuable data. Team members represented departments of Neurology, Ophthalmology, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and Medicine, School of Medicine; and Biomedical Engineering, Pratt School of Engineering.

Glutamatergic Basis of DepressionDeconstructing the Glutamatergic Basis of Depression

Major depressive disorder is the leading cause of disability in the world. Drug treatments fail to adequately treat the disorder in up to 50 percent of patients. Recent evidence indicates ketamine, a drug with anesthetic and pain-killing properties, can effectively treat symptoms in this population—but it has many side effects. Faculty from the schools of Medicine and Engineering will use new technologies to improve the understanding of ketamine’s antidepressant effects, potentially leading to a new class of precision therapeutics to reverse depressive symptoms.