American Federation for Medical Research Experimental Biology
Connect with AFMR:

Public Policy

Contact your Congressperson
Senate
House of Representatives

Funding Opportunities 2012 NIH Director's Award Programs

Pioneer and New Innovator Awards

NIH welcomes proposals for 2012 NIH Director's Pioneer Awards and New Innovator Awards for innovative approaches to major challenges in biomedical or behavioral research.

  • Pioneer Awards:
    • Up to $2.5 million in direct costs over 5 years
    • Open to scientists at any career stage.

  • New Innovator Awards:
    • Up to $1.5 million in direct costs over 5 years
    • For early career stage investigators (ESI), defined as those who have not received an NIH R01 or similar grant and are within 10 years of completing their terminal research degree or medical residency.

NIH expects to make at least 7 Pioneer Awards and at least 33 New Innovator Awards in summer 2012. To continue its strong record of diversity in these programs, NIH especially encourages women and members of groups that are underrepresented in NIH research to apply.

The deadline for submitting Pioneer Award applications is October 7, 2011. See the instructions in the Funding Opportunity Announcement RFA-RM-11-004 and www.commonfund.nih.gov/pioneer for more information. Send questions to pioneer@nih.gov.

The deadline for submitting New Innovator Award applications is October 14, 2011. See the instructions in the Funding Opportunity Announcement RFA-RM-11-005 and commonfund.nih.gov/newinnovator for more information. Send questions to newinnovator@nih.gov.

The NIH Common Fund encourages collaboration and supports a series of exceptionally high impact, trans-NIH programs. These programs are supported by the Common Fund, and managed by the NIH Office of the Director in partnership with the various NIH Institutes, Centers and Offices. Additional information about the NIH Common Fund can be found at www.commonfund.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) –“The Nation's Medical Research Agency” – includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

Back To Top


Statement of NIH Director Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., on Recommendation to Create a Single Institute for Substance Use, Abuse, and Addiction Research

On Nov. 15, 2010, I received the formal recommendation from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Scientific Management Review Board that NIH create a new Institute focusing on substance use, abuse, and addiction research and related public health initiatives. This Institute would integrate the relevant research portfolios from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), and other NIH Institutes and Centers. The formation of a single, new Institute devoted to such research makes scientific sense and would enhance NIH's efforts to address the substance abuse and addiction problems that take such a terrible toll on our society.

Substance use, abuse, and addiction research is carried out by many NIH entities besides NIDA and NIAAA. Consequently, I have asked NIH Principal Deputy Director Lawrence A. Tabak, D.D.S., Ph.D., and National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases Director Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D., to pull together a task force of experts from within NIH to look carefully across all of NIH’s 27 Institutes and Centers to determine where substance use, abuse, and addiction research programs currently exist and make recommendations about what programs should be moved into the proposed new Institute. In addition, the task force will survey NIDA and NIAAA for programs that are not related to substance use, abuse, and addiction research and make recommendations about where such programs will go. Final recommendations to the NIH Director will be informed by consultation with relevant stakeholders.

Clearly, it will take some time to carry out this assessment in a thoughtful, systematic manner. I anticipate that the task force will produce a detailed reorganization plan for my consideration sometime in the summer of 2011.

In the interim, all existing substance use, abuse, and addiction research programs at NIH will continue status quo. It is imperative we keep these important lines of research moving forward with all due speed for the benefit of the nation's health.

The Office of the Director, the central office at NIH, is responsible for setting policy for NIH, which includes 27 Institutes and Centers. This involves planning, managing, and coordinating the programs and activities of all NIH components. The Office of the Director also includes program offices that are responsible for stimulating specific areas of research throughout NIH. Additional information is available at www.nih.gov/icd/od.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) — The Nation's Medical Research Agency — includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

Back To Top


On October 13, 2010 the Department of Justice filed its brief in the appeal of the preliminary injunction that halted hESC research.

The brief argues that the injunction should be lifted because it is “based on legal error and an erroneous assessment of injuries” to the adult stem cell researchers who brought the suit against NIH (i.e., the plaintiffs). The brief states that 1) plaintiffs have demonstrated no likelihood that the case will be successful on its merits because federal funding for hESC research does not violate the Dickey-Wicker amendment, 2) NIH has consistently interpreted the Dickey-Wicker amendment to permit hESC research, and Congress has repeatedly ratified that interpretation, 3) the court that issued the preliminary injunction erred in setting aside NIH’s interpretation that hESC research is permissible under Dickey-Wicker, 4) plaintiffs have failed to demonstrate that an injunction is required to avoid imminent, irreparable injury to themselves, and 5) the injunction would result in irreparable injury to NIH, NIH funded research, and the public interest. The same day, the plaintiffs filed with the District Court—the court that issued the preliminary injunction—a combined brief making their case for an expedited ruling in their favor, opposing NIH’s request for an expedited ruling in its favor, and responding to the amici curiae briefs submitted on behalf of NIH. In their brief, plaintiffs argued that 1) they have standing in the case due to the increased competition they would face from NIH funding of hESC research, 2) the Dickey-Wicker amendment is unambiguous in its prohibition of hESC research, 3) the legislative history is irrelevant to the interpretation of the Dickey-Wicker amendment, and 4) NIH promulgated the NIH Guidelines for Stem Cell Research in violation of the Administrative Procedures Act by failing to consider the public comments it received when crafting the guidelines.
Brief for Appellants
Declaration of Dr. James Sherley
Exhibit A to Declaration
Government Response and Opposition

Back To Top


U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit extends suspension

Late yesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit extended its suspension of the preliminary injunction issued by a lower court that had barred federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research (hESC). This procedural decision means the NIH can continue funding hESC research as the appeals court considers the government’s appeal of the preliminary injunction.
• View the United States Court of Appeals document
• View the Brief Amicus Curiae

Back To Top


NEW NIH Funding Opportunity: NIH Early Independence Award Program

The NIH Common Fund announces the highly selective NIH Director’s Early Independence Award Program to provide a mechanism for exceptional, early career scientists who are U.S. residents or permanent citizens to omit traditional post-doctoral training and move into independent academic positions at U.S. institutions directly upon completion of their graduate degrees (Ph.D., M.D., or equivalent). The NIH expects to issue 10 awards through this program in fall 2011.

Early Independence Awards are targeted to exceptional junior investigators with the intellect, scientific creativity, drive, and maturity to flourish independently without the need for traditional post-doctoral training. Early Independence Award projects will receive up to ,000 in direct costs each year for up to 5 years.

Junior scientists must identify a host institution. Alternatively, institutions may actively recruit exceptional junior scientists to apply for these positions. An institution may elect to host an applicant for this program with the commitment to a position being contingent upon receipt of the award. These awards will be very selective, and each institution may only submit two applications.

The deadline for submitting Early Independence Award applications is January 21, 2011. See the instructions in the Funding Opportunity (RFA-RM-10-19). Additional information, including Frequently Asked Questions about the Early Independence Investigators Award Program is available at: commonfund.nih.gov/earlyindependence. Send questions to earlyindependence@mail.nih.gov.

The NIH Common Fund (formerly the NIH Roadmap) encourages collaboration and supports a series of exceptionally high impact, trans-NIH programs. These programs are supported by the Common Fund, and managed by the NIH Office of the Director in partnership with the various NIH Institutes, Centers and Offices. Additional information about the NIH Common Fund can be found at commonfund.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) –“The Nation's Medical Research Agency” – includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

Back To Top


Senator Specter introduces Stem Cell Research Advancement Act of 2010

Senator Specter introduces Stem Cell Research Advancement Act of 2010, Bill S 3766, to codify the language of President Obama’s 2009 Executive Order allowing federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. In addition to providing for federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, the Specter bill requires the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the National Institutes of Health to maintain guidelines on human stem cell research, review the guidelines every three years and update them as the science advances. The bill does not allow federal funds to be used to derive stem cell lines. Read more here...

Back To Top


NIH Resumes Funding for hESC Research

NIH has resumed funding for human embryonic stem cell (hESC) research. The decision comes in response to a U.S. Court of Appeals ruling granting a temporary stay of the August 23rd preliminary injunction that had barred federal funding for this research (see: http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/STAY%20GRANTED.pdf). In a statement issued today (see: http://www.nih.gov/news/09102010_stemcell_statement.htm), NIH said that it "has resumed intramural research and will continue its consideration of grants that were frozen by the preliminary injunction on August 23. The suspension of all grants, contracts, and applications that involve the use of human embryonic stem cells has been temporarily lifted." In a letter to NIH Institute Directors, Dr. Sally Rockey has provided guidance as to how the institutes should proceed with hESC funding. The text of that letter was made available to Science and can be found here: http://news.sciencemag.org/scienceinsider/2010/09/nih-rushes-to-hand-out-stem-cell.html#more.

According to the same Science report, the appeals court is expected to rule shortly after September 20th (the deadline for parties in the case to file their briefs with that court) on whether or not to continue the preliminary injunction issued by the lower court. The situation could change, as both sides have filed procedural and substantive motions in the District Court and the Court of Appeals.

The Washington Post, Coalition for the Advancement of Medical Research (CAMR), and others are still calling for congressional action. While the appeals court’s decision to stay the preliminary injunction provides some temporary relief to the scientific community, the alert that FASEB sent out on Wednesday remains in place. The alert has generated 3,751 emails to Congress since it was released.

Back To Top


NIH Director's Response to Stem Cell Injunction

"Human embryonic stem cell research holds great promise for the development of treatments for people threatened by potentially curable diseases. The recent court ruling that halted the federal funding of human embryonic stem cell research could cause irreparable damage and delay potential breakthroughs to improve care for people living with serious diseases and conditions such as spinal cord injury, diabetes, or Parkinson's disease. The injunction threatens to stop progress in one of the most encouraging areas of biomedical research, just as scientists are gaining momentum--and squander the investment we have already made. The possibility of using these cells to replace those that have been damaged by disease or injury is one of the most breathtaking advances we can envision. Human embryonic stem cells also represent a powerful new approach to the early stages of screening for new drugs, and may hold the secrets to creating entirely new, targeted clinical therapies. We must move forward--without delay--to sustain this field of research that provides so much hope for thousands of patients and their families."

Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D., Director, National Institutes of Health

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- The Nation's Medical Research Agency -- includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases.

For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

This Statement from the NIH Director is available online at: http://www.nih.gov/about/director/08262010statement_stemcellinjunction.htm.

Back To Top


NIH Announces DPCPSI Director

NIH announced the appointment of James M. Anderson, M.D., Ph.D., as the Director of the NIH Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives (DPCPSI).

Dr. Anderson is currently Professor and Chair of the Department of Cell and Molecular Physiology in the School of Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a position he has held since 2002. Before his appointment at Chapel Hill, he was Professor of Medicine and Cell Biology and Chief, Section of Digestive Diseases, at the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Anderson has extensive clinical experience in both Internal Medicine and Hepatology, and he is considered among the top authorities in the world in his primary research field of tight junctions and paracellular transport. He has been a principal investigator on NIH grants for almost twenty years.

"With experience in clinical medicine, in academic research, and in administration, Dr. Anderson has a broad understanding of the biomedical research spectrum that will serve him and the NIH well as he works with us to evaluate, prioritize, and coordinate a wide range of trans-NIH research opportunities. I am thrilled to have recruited him to NIH," said Dr. Collins.

The NIH DPCPSI mission includes identifying emerging scientific opportunities, rising public health challenges, and scientific knowledge gaps that merit further research. The Division plans and implements trans-NIH initiatives supported by the Common Fund and coordinates research related to AIDS, behavioral and social sciences, women's health, and disease prevention.

To see the NIH Press Release, please visit:
http://www.nih.gov/news/health/aug2010/od-09.htm

Back To Top


APPOINTMENT OF PAT WHITE AS ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR FOR LEGISLATIVE POLICY AND ANALYSIS, NIH

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH NIH News
NIH Office of the Director (OD)
For Immediate Release: Monday, March 1, 2010

FROM:
Director, NIH

SUBJECT:
Appointment of Pat White as Associate Director for Legislative Policy and Analysis, NIH

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Francis Patrick "Pat" White as the new Associate Director for Legislative Policy and Analysis, NIH. He will join us at the NIH in the next few weeks. I want to express my personal thanks to Roz Gray for skillfully guiding the Office of Legislative Policy and Analysis (OLPA) as its Acting Director for the past ten months.

Mr. White has most recently been serving as Vice President for Federal Relations at the Association of American Universities (AAU). In that position, he developed and executed advocacy strategies for AAU's president and the leadership of the 60 top research universities in the United States. Before working at AAU, he was Director of Legislative Relations for the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) from 2000 to 2003 and Director of Public Affairs for the American Association of Immunologists (AAI) from 1993 to 2000. Pat also has experience in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and as Chief of Staff for a Michigan Congressman, the late Robert W. Davis.

Please join me in welcoming Pat to the NIH leadership team, congratulating him on his appointment, and offering him your full support as he begins his work with us.

Francis S. Collins, M.D., Ph.D.

Back To Top


Major Changes to NIH Applications. Be Prepared!

Dear NIH principal investigators, signing officials, and applicants,

Are you planning to submit an NIH grant application? If so, please note that all applications intended for due dates on or after January 25, 2010* require the use of new forms and instructions. Major changes include:
  • Restructured forms to align with review criteria
  • Significantly shorter page limits
These changes apply to all competing applications, so whether you are submitting a new, renewal, resubmission or revision, you must take action now to ensure a successful submission!
  1. Return to the updated funding opportunity announcement or reissued parent announcement to download the new application package and instructions.
    • FOAs are in the process of being updated. See timeline for more information.
  2. Be sure to choose the correct forms. Applications intended for due dates on or after January 25 require new forms.
    • For Electronic SF 424 (R&R): ADOBE-FORMS-B
    • For Paper PHS 398: Revision date “June 2009”
  3. Read the updated FOA and new application instructions carefully
For more details the Enhancing Peer Review Web site which has a page dedicated to the upcoming application changes, as well as a number of additional resources including: Sincerely,

NIH Office of Extramural Research
Division of Communications and Outreach

* Applicants eligible for continuous submission who are submitting R01, R21, and R34 AIDS applications should use the old SF 424 (R&R) ADOBE-FORMS-A on or before February 7, 2010 and the new SF 424 (R&R) ADOBE-FORMS-B thereafter. Non-AIDS applications from applicants eligible for continuous submission need to us ADOBE-FORMS-A on or before January 24, and the ADOBE-FORMS-B on or after January 25, 2010.

Receive monthy updates on NIH grant policies and activities through the NIH Extramural Nexus.

Back To Top


Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D. Confirmed as the 16th Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The AFMR is pleased to announce that Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D. has been confirmed as the 16th director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Dr. Collins has been a member of the AFMR since 1990 and his contributions to the fields of science and medicine have been remarkable. The AFMR is extremely proud to have him as a member.

Read Dr. Collins' article about New Cancer Treatments

View more about Dr. Collins' appointment

Back To Top


NIH Clinical Collection Now Available at www.nihclinicalcollection.com

The NIH Clinical Collection (NCC), a plated array of approximately 450 clinically tested compounds, is now available for distribution through www.nihclinicalcollection.com. There is a cost recovery charge of $805.00 for the collection.

Similar collections of FDA approved drugs have proven to be rich sources of undiscovered bioactivity and therapeutic potential. The clinically tested compounds in the NCC are highly drug-like with known safety profiles. These compounds can provide excellent starting points for medicinal chemistry optimization and, for high-affinity targets, may even be appropriate for direct human use in new disease areas. The compounds come as a ready-to-screen kit with the following features:

Format: The collection contains approximately 450 compounds arrayed in six 96-well plates. Compounds are supplied as 50ul of a 10mM solution in 100% DMSO.

Selection criteria: The NCC consists almost entirely of drugs that have been in phase I-III clinical trials and have not been represented in other available collections. These compounds also have favorable attributes for inclusion in a screening collection, such as purity, solubility and commercial availability for re-supply.

Drug-likeness: By definition, compounds that have been tested in human clinical trials have highly developed properties of drug-likeness, such as bioavailability and stability. Having been used in humans, most of these compounds also have well-characterized safety profiles.

Extensive Bioactivity Profiles: The NCC compounds are part of the screening library for the NIH Roadmap Molecular Libraries Screening Centers Network (MLSCN). Thus, extensive bioactivity data on these compounds from dozens of high throughput screens will be publicly available through PubChem. Through ongoing screening within and outside the MLSCN, the body of knowledge about these compounds will be continually expanding.

Resupply: All of the compounds in the NCC are commercially available for re-supply. Sources of compounds for the NCC are listed in the compound database.

The NCC was assembled by the National Institutes of Health through the Molecular Libraries Roadmap Initiative as part of its mission to enable the use of compound screens in biomedical research.

The NIH Roadmap for Medical Research is a series of far-reaching initiatives designed to transform the nation’s medical research capabilities and speed the movement of research discoveries from the bench to the bedside. It provides a framework of the priorities the NIH must address in order to optimize its entire research portfolio and lays out a vision for a more efficient and productive system of medical research. For more information about the NIH Roadmap, please visit the Web site at http://nihroadmap.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) — The Nation's Medical Research Agency — is comprised of 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary Federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

Back To Top


Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (K08)

The objective of the Mentored Clinical Scientist Research Career Development Award (K08) is to continue the long standing NIH support of didactic study and mentored research for individuals with clinical doctoral degrees. This award provides support and “protected time” for an intensive, supervised research career development experience in the fields of biomedical or behavioral research, including translational research. For the purpose of this award, translational research is defined as application of basic research discoveries toward the diagnosis, management, and prevention of disease.

An award is for a period of 3 to 5 years and provides support for salary and research-related costs. The amount funded as salary for a career development award varies among the NIH participating Institutes and Centers (ICs). Therefore, the applicant is strongly advised to contact the relevant IC for any distinct guidelines, requirements, and allowable funds. Candidates for K08 award must have a clinical doctoral degree. Applications must contain a career development plan as well as a research plan. The participating NIH Institutes and Centers may have distinctive guidelines, requirements, and funding amounts for this announcement in order to accommodate the career needs of researchers working in fields related to their specific research missions.

For more information, please go to: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-06-512.html#SectionI

Back To Top


NCRR News

The National Center for Research Offers Clinical and Translational Science Awards

Back To Top


> Browse Archives


Action Alert: Contact your Senators on the comparative effectiveness research (CER) issue in the healthcare reform debate.

Defend a Scientific Approach to Comparative Effectiveness Research

CER Coalition for the Integrity of Science: Outline of Comparative Effectiveness Research Proposal