I should have mentioned in my previous post on HMP funding that the number of grants awarded and the total amount awarded was larger than the original request for applications specified thanks to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) (i.e., the much-debated stimulus). I guess this is another example of ARRA not fixing in four months an economic crisis that was twenty years in the making. I also forgot to mention that we at The Genome Center are collaborating on two other demonstration project grants. In addition to the three I listed in the first post, we are collaborating with J. Dennis Fortenberry, M.D., at IUPUI studying the adolescent male urethral microbiome and its relation to puberty, sexual activity and sexually transmitted disease and Huiying Li, Ph.D., from UCLA studying the association between the skin microbiome and acne. An interesting twist in the Fortenberry study is that the researchers will give the participants cell phones with unlimited text messaging so that they can receive and respond to questions from the researchers on a daily basis rather than keep journals or diaries. It is left as an exercise for the reader to determine how giving a teen unlimited text messaging capabilities will skew the study participants and their behavior (but hopefully not their microbiome).