Science & Tech

Nine Research Teams Receive TPT Grants 

Texas A&M will invest up to $4.75 million a year to develop research proposals aimed at attracting additional funding.
By Texas A&M University Division of Research February 7, 2024

Nine interdisciplinary groups of researchers from Texas A&M University will receive as much as $250,000 each over two years from the university’s Targeted Proposal Teams (TPT) initiative, the Division of Research announced today.

Launched in January, TPT is committed to making up to $4.75 million available annually to encourage research teams across multiple disciplines to develop proposals designed to attract additional federal, state, private or commercial funding. In addition, each project addresses global challenges through technological innovation and developing next-generation research leaders.

“Congratulations to our faculty for submitting exceptional proposals for this year’s TPT awards,” said Dr. Jack G. Baldauf, vice president for research. “Receiving a TPT grant represents the first step in a multi-year effort for an interdisciplinary team to secure substantial government and private funding. By providing seed grants to initiate these long-term and groundbreaking projects, the TPT initiative should contribute significantly to the future overall growth of the Texas A&M research enterprise.”

The program is part of ASCEND, Texas A&M’s collaborative research seed grant initiative.

Each TPT-funded team includes at least three researchers and is led by a tenured faculty member as its principal investigator:

  • Dr. Raymundo Arroyave, College of Engineering, “Exploring the physical, mathematical, statistical and artificial intelligence foundations of autonomous materials discovery.”
  • Dr. Elena Castell-Perez, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, “Sustainable food protein transition system: the case for insects.”
  • Dr. Zhilei Chen, School of Medicine, “Engineering and delivery of localized therapeutics.”
  • Dr. Arum Han, College of Engineering, “ISYMPHONY (Infrastructure for synthetic biological methods that provide high-throughput opportunities for the next-generation bioeconomy).”
  • Dr. Chanam Lee, School of Architecture, The Center for Healthy, Equitable and Resilient Transportation + Environment in Texas (C-HEaRT).”
  • Dr. Ying Li, College of Engineering, “Integrated Carbon Capture and Utilization via Rapid Electrification (IC-CURE).” 
  • Dr. Sakiko Okumoto, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, “N-smart TAMU varieties: Improving yield while mitigating climate change.
  • Dr. Junjie Zhang, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, “Characterize and engineer therapeutic bacteriophages for personalized medicine.”
  • Dr. Renyi Zhang, College of Arts and Sciences, “Exploring the Nexus of CLimate ChangE and AiR Quality (CLEAR).”

Media contact: Research Communications,

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