A--Laboratory, Vivarium, and Aquatics Support for the US Army Center for Environmental Health Research (USACEHR)
Department of the Army, U.S. Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity | Published January 14, 2015 - Deadline March 2, 2015
The United States Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity (USAMRAA) in support of the US Army Center for Environmental Health Research (USACEHR) has a requirement for research, technical, and scientific administrative support to programs conducted by USACEHR at Fort Detrick, MD.
The Contractor may perform searches of the technical literature and may be requested to provide support in document acquisition and translation. The Contractor shall participate in development and preparation of research scopes of work, animal-use and research protocols and standing operating procedures as needed in the planning and execution of research projects.
The Contractor shall perform laboratory procedures, testing and research protocols in analytical chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology and toxicology (toxicogenomics), toxicology, biomarkers of exposure and effects, aquatic biology, biomonitoring and remote monitoring of contaminated areas, fate and effects of environmental contaminants, exposure assessment, human and ecological risk assessment and model development, and other related areas. Methods may be of a routine nature or may involve specialized procedures. A part of the research may consist of the development of new procedures or methods. The Contractor shall perform maintenance of laboratory animals and cellular organisms at USACEHR facilities. Specific expertise in maintenance and husbandry of rodent, aquatic and amphibian species maintained by USACEHR is required.
In situations in which the Contractor is required to work on-site, a part of USACEHR laboratory space and office space will be identified for Contractor use. Where practicable, and not otherwise addressed, Contractor staff also shall have equipment and facilities dedicated to their use only.
The Contractor shall prepare, edit and complete technical reports, manuscripts, annual reports and other technical documents, including oral reporting and briefing materials, as required. The Contractor shall review intramural and extramural technical research proposals, reports, manuscripts, and other scientific documents as requested. This may require the ability to generate detailed graphics and to utilize other current audio-visual presentation software and technologies. Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) may be required to support specialized taskings. As SME services are required for these taskings, the contractor shall be provided with a PWS that identifies the specific requirements.
USACEHR is developing new and novel approaches to assessing the nature and extent of contamination of the environment. The development and application of mammalian and non-mammalian hazard assessment models coupled with analytical chemistry data provide for an integrated biological assessment of the presence of hazards to both human and ecological receptors. The development and application of this technology is facilitated by an effective review and sharing of the information with DoD program managers, extramural contractors, industry, other government agencies, academic institutions and the public at large. There are many products by which the progress and results of the USACEHR research program may be summarized and disseminated. The Contractor shall provide for all elements of intramural research management, technology transfer and marketing, but the focus is support of ongoing efforts in biomarker discovery, animal husbandry, and development of Tier 2 assays for endocrine disrupting chemicals.
USACEHR conducts research, development, testing and evaluation activities that involve the use of a number of mammalian and non-mammalian aquatic species as animal models. This research requires the establishment, maintenance and renewal of mammalian and aquatic organism cultures, operation of testing facilities for exposure to chemical toxicants under a variety of conditions, to include injection, inhalation, and operation of a water treatment facility to ensure that culture and test waters are of uniform and acceptable quality. All routine activities, including preparation of periodic reports, are performed according to USACEHR standing operating procedures (SOPs). Coordinate and schedule organism colony renewals and husbandry to provide sufficient organisms to meet the needs of researchers. Provide periodic (e.g., monthly) reports on the status of all mammalian and aquatic organisms. Facility operation must meet accreditation requirements of the Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International (AAALAC). Organisms to be maintained include but are not limited to mice, rats, medaka, bluegill, zebrafish, fathead minnows, Xenopus frogs, killifish, daphnids and algae. Duties include feeding the organisms and maintaining live food sources (e.g., microworms, algae and brine shrimp), tank and glassware cleaning, maintenance and housekeeping in animal rooms, set-up and take-down of tanks, ordering supplies and equipment in a timely fashion to prevent shortages, shipping and receiving organisms and providing proper quarantine procedures, developing new aquaculture procedures as needed, and fabricating simple items such as specialty test chambers. Use of some equipment such as a plate glass cutter or drill for glass tanks or rubber stoppers is required. Monitor operation of well water facilities and notify maintenance staff immediately of malfunctions. Conduct daily, weekly or other periodic water quality sampling and measurement as required, using wet chemical methods or water quality equipment, such as meters, probes and recording devices to measure parameters such as temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, conductivity, ammonia, alkalinity and hardness. As needed, construct, operate and maintain the aquatic toxicity testing facility fixtures and equipment, including apparatus such as flow-through proportional diluters, peristaltic pumps, etc. Assist in toxicity test operation and maintenance. Modify tanks or adapt specialized equipment to toxicity testing needs. Clean tanks and equipment to remove chemicals used in testing. Facility maintenance must meet AAALAC requirements.
USACEHR is developing new toxicity test models. In one approach, USACEHR is attempting to identify molecular biomarkers that are indicative of toxic chemical exposure using zebrafish, several mammalian cell culture models and rat models of toxicity. The availability of well-characterized biomarkers in these model organisms will enable the Army to evaluate new chemicals for possible toxic effects and to test potentially contaminated environments for the presence of toxic hazards for humans and other organisms. Both proteomic and genomic technologies are being utilized in this effort. All routine activities, including preparation of periodic reports, are performed according to USACEHR SOPs. Carry out largely independent research projects to identify novel biomarkers of exposure and effect using one or more of the above model systems. Develop new laboratory methods and adapt existing techniques to the equipment and project at hand. Perform sophisticated molecular studies on RNA, DNA and proteins extracted from liver, gill and other tissues of the above model organisms. Maintain notebooks and databases of all experiments and be responsible for data interpretation and statistical analysis. Prepare presentations for laboratory and scientific meetings; prepare manuscripts for presentation of results in scientific journals from experimentation, and assist co-authors in papers containing his/her significant contributions. Access and utilize the scientific literature to establish and modify methods, support protocol preparation and approval, design studies, and prepare manuscripts and presentations. The development of the new toxicity test models involves and using them to conduct exposure experiments that involve genomic and proteomic evaluations in addition to determination of the physiologic effects of the exposures. Protocols are developed for zebrafish, mammalian cell culture models, and rodents. For zebrafish, gene expression analyses are done using Agilent or Affymetrix microarrays; Affymetrix GeneChips are used for all the other model systems. Proteomic analyses make use of a combination of electrophoresis, liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. Conduct literature searches for test chemicals, evaluate analytical methods for utility in our experiments, evaluate the behavior of the test chemicals under our test conditions, and determine the appropriate designs for chemical replenishment during the exposure experiments. Be responsible for proteomic analyses of samples from exposure experiments. Develop and apply microscopic evaluation methods and other physiologic measurements for evaluation of effects of exposures. Assist with conduct of exposure experiments. Assist with gene expression analyses when needed.
USACEHR has collected data from numerous research protocols that must be prepared for publication in peer reviewed journals. Contractor is requested to provide expertise in the form of a technical writer to assist in the preparation of manuscripts to be submitted for publication. The contractor will have experience in preparing manuscripts and will possess the necessary skill set to understand the collected data (i.e.: comprehension of scientific work performed--see work descriptions above), organize the data in an appropriate format, prepare descriptive narrative in appropriate format, and edit the manuscript.
Key personnel for this requirement is expected to include, but not be limited to:
Animal care and laboratory technician
Molecular biologist / biomarker scientist
Molecular biologist / transcriptomics scientist
This procurement is a 100% small business set aside for offerors operating under the NAICS code 541712, with a size standard of 500 employees.
Solicitation number W81XWH-15-R-0027 is anticipated for release to the vendor community on or about 30 January 2015 and proposals will be due on or about 02 March 2015. The government anticipates a single-award IDIQ contract with a one-year base period and four one-year option periods. The anticipated award date is 30 April 2015.
No hard copies of the solicitation will be issued by the contracting office. The competitive solicitation, solicitation amendments, and all questions and answers related to this procurement shall be made available via the Internet at https://acquisition.army.mil and https://www.fbo.gov.
Potential offerors are responsible for accessing the website and obtaining the solicitation and any amendments thereto. Interested parties must respond to the solicitation in order to be considered for award of any resultant contract. To be eligible for an award, offerors MUST be registered with the System for Award Management at http://www.sam.gov.
Potential offerors are required to direct all questions via email to Contract Specialist Samantha L. Connors at SAMANTHA.L.CONNORS.CIV@MAIL.MIL.