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Research Affinity Teams (RAffTs)

Submit your RAffT application today!

 What are RAffTs? RAffTs are workgroups supported and approved by the LSOM Dean's Office. Ultimately these working groups should serve as the foundation of a Program Project Grant, multidisciplinary (U01) grant, or other similar large award, though outcomes including increased cross-departmental collaborations for publications, enhanced sharing of data/equipment/best practices, etc. are also encouraged.

Applications must be submitted by investigators whose primary faculty appointment is the Long School of Medicine. Faculty are encouraged to collaborate with individuals across the institution and from partner organizations.
Amount and Term: $2,000 will be awarded for a project period of up to 1 year. Funds are available to support up to 10 RAffTs.
Application Submission: Applications must be submitted via the REDCap platform. A full description of RAffTs, including application guidelines, is available here.
Review process and criteria: Applications will be reviewed by the LSOM Associate Dean for Research and submitted to the Dean for final approval. Considerations for award of a RAffT include the following criteria:

  • Likelihood of submission for/securing extramural funding within 12 months of establishment
  • Extent of meaningful interdisciplinary collaboration and/or community engagement
  • Contribution to career development of clinical/translational scientists
  • Other criteria for review include:
    Fit with LSOM Research priorities including aging, cancer, diabetes, infectious disease, neuroscience, and population health.

Please note: These teams are not to take the place of existing department/center/institute activities, and must focus on topics that are not addressed by an existing LSOM or UTHSA entity. Proposals that seek to establish a RAffT that is potentially duplicative of existing entities will not be awarded. 

Current Research Affinity Teams

Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell-based Translational Research
This chartered working group will consist of faculty across 3 local institutions: UTHSA, UTSA, and TBRI. Creating synergy across these institutions will provide the following benefits to existing research programs:

  1. Share available instrumentation capabilities and needs to enhance ongoing and future studies
  2. Learn about unique methodological expertise investigators may want to tap into
  3. Get acquainted with existing biorepository samples and efforts and ways to augment them
  4. Establish basic-clinical science collaborations!

The short term goal is to establish better collaboration between faculty in order to enhance ongoing research programs.  A longer term goal is to build toward one or more cooperative/multidisciplinary program projects. 

If you are interested in joining this RAffT please contact Dr. Donna Lehman at


Microbiome Working Group
The microbiome working group works to gather, organize, and lead the effort for submitting a program grant for microbiome in future. It is also a resource for UT Health SA researchers to share knowledge of this continuously evolving field and publish inter-programmatic manuscripts. The goals for this effort are two-tiered:

  1. To assemble a multi-disciplinary research team focused on microbiome research for sharing of project-related ideas, critique of ongoing manuscript/grant submissions, and improved collaboration
  2. To identify and submit a microbiome related program grant

Exercise, Nutrition, and Health Promotion
The goals of this group are two-tiered:

  1. Develop a research agenda emphasizing the importance of exercise and nutrition, and how they lead to promoting healthy behaviors preventing and/or delaying disease and aging
  2. Foster networking collaboration amongst faculty within the institution, outside higher education institutions, health care professionals, and community advocates

If you are interested in joining this RAffT please contact Dr. Nicholas Musi at