Nutrition and Obesity grant opportunities through USDA and NIH

The Childhood Obesity Prevention Program focuses on the societal challenge to end child obesity. Specific program areas are designed to achieve the long-term outcome of reducing the prevalence of overweight and obesity among children and adolescents. The Division of Nutrition (DN) supports research on the societal challenge to end child obesity. The focus is on the generation of new knowledge about the behavioral, social, cultural, and environmental factors that influence excessive weight gain in children and adolescents. DN is with the Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition (IFSN) at USDA – National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

Considerable evidence indicates that factors related to energy balance – the integrated effects of diet, physical activity, and genetics on growth and body weight – are known risk factors for many chronic diseases and conditions, such as several forms of cancer and cardiovascular disease. Recent systematic reviews and meta-analyses of observational studies suggest that being overweight or obese increases risk for initial cancers, recurrence, and second cancers and decreases overall survival among cancer survivors. These results also suggest that physical activity decreases cancer risk and mortality. Interest is rapidly increasing in the role sedentary behavior as a unique disease risk factor. The Health Behaviors Research Branch (HBRB) supports research on cancer prevention behaviors and outcomes, which includes diet, physical activity, sedentary behavior, energy balance, obesity and genetic influences on behaviors. HBRB is within the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) Behavioral Research Program (BRP), in the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences (DCCPS).

This session will provide an overview of obesity and nutrition funding opportunities through USDA-NIFA and NIH.


Deirdra N. Chester

National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA

DeirdraDr. Deirdra Chester is a National Program Leader for Applied Nutrition Research in the Division of Nutrition, Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition at the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA. Prior to joining NIFA, Dr. Chester was a scientist at the USDA- Agriculture Research Service. She provides leadership in identifying emerging issues of national importance, program reviews, and grants management in the area of nutrition, functional components of food, and childhood obesity. She also provides leadership for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) Childhood Obesity Prevention and the Foundational Program - Function of Efficacy and Nutrient competitive grants programs. She provides co-leadership for a joint USDA - NIH competitive grants program also. She has works extensively with a number of interagency projects and programs with the FDA, NIH and the CDC.

Her areas of expertise include childhood obesity, diabetes, nutrition education, public health and health promotion, nutrition and the food environment, as well as the health status of African-Americans and other underserved populations. Dr. Chester serves on the Executive Board and is a Past-Chair of the Food and Nutrition Section of the American Public Health Association. She is a Past-Chair of the Research Committee and a member of the Committee on Professional Development of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Dr. Chester is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist.

She currently holds membership in the following professional organizations: the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, The American Society for Nutrition, The Institute of Food Technologist and the American Public Health Association. Dr. Chester has spoken both nationally and internationally on nutrition topics.

Dr. Chester holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Nutrition from Florida International University. She also holds a Master of Science degree in Food and Nutrition Science and a baccalaureate degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from Florida State University.

Tanya Agurs-Collins

National Cancer Institute/NIH/DHHS

Tanya Agurs CollinsDr. Tanya Agurs-Collins is a Program Director in the Health Behaviors Research Branch, Behavioral Research Program, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute (NCI). In this capacity, she is responsible for directing, coordinating and managing a research grant portfolio in diet, physical activity and weight loss behavioral interventions for cancer prevention and survival. Dr. Agurs-Collins' research focuses on race and ethnic disparities in dietary intake and obesity on cancer risk and survival. She is also interested in understanding individual genetic variation in diet and physical activity behaviors and response to weight loss interventions. Dr. Agurs-Collins has a Ph.D. in Nutritional Sciences with an emphasis in epidemiology and an M.S. in Public Health Nutrition from the Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA. She also holds a B.S. in Nutrition and Dietetics from the Howard University, Washington, DC. Prior to joining NCI, Dr. Agurs-Collins was an Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Howard University College of Medicine and nutritional epidemiologist at the Howard University Cancer Center, Washington, DC. She is a registered dietitian with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Molecular Medicine and functional genomics of energy metabolism and chronic diseases


St-Amand J

University Laval, Canada
Potential discovery of novel high fat diet induced satiety hormone.

St Amand JonnyDr St-Amand is a professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine at University Laval and director of the Functional Genomic Laboratory and the SAGE Facility at the CHUL Research Center. He has pursued his post-doctoral training at the University of British Colombia to study the effects of obesity and energy expenditure on coronary artery diseases as well as genetic and physiopathology. His current research program is aimed to the development of exercise pills and the discovery of novel high fat diet induced satiety hormone. Moreover, he is developing bioinformatics software to analyze the results obtained from transcriptomic studies. His research group has presented more than 100 presentations, most of them at international congress. His functional genomics studies will allow developing new treatments for obesity, coronary artery diseases and cancers.

Tanaka H

Fukuoka University, Japan
Moderate intensity lactate threshold exercise training, obesity and chronic diseases.

Hiroaki Tanaka

Kanzaki M

Tohoku University, Japan
Electronic pulse stimulation (EPS)/mechanical stretch as a model for physical exercise and chronic diseases using cell cultured myotubes.

Makoto Kanzaki

Melouane A

University Laval, Canada
Functional genomic and physical exercise studies leading to the development of obesity and sedentary related diseases drugs discovery.

Melouane A