MIDCAREER INVESTIGATOR AWARD IN MOUSE PATHOBIOLOGY RESEARCH

Release Date:  March 7, 2001

PA NUMBER:  PAR-01-064 (This PAR has been reissued, see PAR-06-159)

National Center for Research Resources
National Institute on Aging

PURPOSE

This ongoing program Announcement (PAR) for the Midcareer Investigator Award 
in Mouse Pathobiology Research is being reissued.  This PAR replaces PAR-99-
065 which was published February 19, 1999.  The National Institutes of Health 
(NIH) is especially interested in increasing the number of scientists trained 
to conduct high-quality mouse pathobiology research. The purpose of the 
Midcareer Investigator Award in Mouse Pathobiology Research is to provide 
support for established outstanding pathobiologists to allow them protected 
time to devote to mouse pathobiology research, to relieve them from time 
consuming service obligations and administrative responsibilities, and to act 
as mentors for beginning investigators.  The target candidates are scientists 
engaged in pathobiology research who are within 15 years of their specialty 
training, who can demonstrate the need for a period of intensive research 
focus as a means of enhancing their research careers, and who are committed to 
mentoring the next generation of mouse pathobiologists.  This initiative is in 
response to recommendations established at the NIH meeting on "Priority 
Setting for Mouse Genomics and Genetics Resources," to increasing pressures 
created by the growing number of genetically altered mice being used by the 
biomedical research community, and to burgeoning opportunities for mouse 
pathobiologists in the biomedical research environment.

The objectives of the Midcareer Investigator Award in Mouse Pathobiology 
Research are to encourage experienced, midcareer pathobiologists to:

- devote more time to mouse pathobiology research by relieving these 
investigators from time-consuming institutional service, this protected time 
will advance their skills in conducting independent biomedical research.

- increase their mentoring of beginning investigators in mouse pathobiology to 
build up the pool of skilled mouse pathologists who can fill the growing need 
for trained professionals to contribute in the exciting discoveries being made 
using genetically altered mice for biomedical research.

- conduct state-of-the-art biomedical research in mouse pathobiology.	

This Award will enable candidates holding a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine or 
equivalent degree (see ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS below) to undertake up to five 
years (a minimum of three years is required) of enhanced mouse pathobiology 
research, thereby further developing their research skills, devoting time to 
mouse pathobiology research, and acting as mentors and role models for 
beginning investigators.

The prospective candidate for the Midcareer Investigator Award in Mouse 
Pathobiology Research should propose a period of research consistent with 
his/her research and/or clinical experience and with the proposed further 
development of his/her research skills.  All programs should be carefully 
tailored to meet the individual needs of the candidate and must include a 
description of meritorious past research projects that meet the definition of 
mouse pathobiology research.  In addition, the candidate should have a 
demonstrated record of mentoring and should describe mentoring activities that 
will involve pathobiology investigators with little or no research experience. 
 Finally, at the time of application, the candidate should have a demonstrated 
record of significant, peer-reviewed research support in the field of mouse 
pathobiology.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

Most candidates for this award will have a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine 
degree (or equivalent) from an institution recognized by the American 
Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).  In addition, individuals holding other 
clinical (such as the M.D.) or research (such as the Ph.D.) degree(s) may 
apply for the award if they have been certified or have demonstrated the 
necessary expertise to perform high quality, funded research in mouse 
pathobiology. Candidates must have completed their specialty or research 
training within 15 years of submitting the application, and there is no age 
limit for candidates. In exceptional circumstances, the period of eligibility 
may be extended if it can be demonstrated that candidates had an interruption 
in their career progression due to family or personal circumstances. 

Candidates must be working in a research environment, conducting mouse 
pathobiology research, and have significant peer reviewed research support.  
This support can be as a principal or co-principal investigator, and needs to 
involve a significant project with biomedical relevance.  Candidates must be 
willing to spend up to 50% effort (at least 25%) conducting mouse pathobiology 
research and mentoring. Candidates must describe a research and mentoring 
program that will meet their individual needs and capabilities.

Applications may be submitted on behalf of candidates by domestic, non-Federal 
organizations, public or private, such as universities, veterinary, medical, 
dental, or nursing schools or other institutions of higher education.  
Minorities, women and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. 

At the time of award, candidates must be citizens or noncitizen nationals of 
the United States, or must have been lawfully admitted to the United States 
for permanent residence (i.e., in possession of a currently valid Alien 
Registration Receipt Card I- 551, or other legal verification of such status). 
 
Noncitizen nationals are generally persons born in outlying possessions of the 
United States (i.e., American Samoa and Swains Island).  Individuals on 
temporary visas are not eligible.

A candidate for the MIDCAREER INVESTIGATOR AWARD IN MOUSE PATHOBIOLOGY
RESEARCH may not concurrently apply for any other PHS award that duplicates 
the provisions of this award. Recipients of this award are required to hold 
independent research support, either Federal or private, during the period of 
this award.

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

Awards in response to this program announcement will use the Midcareer 
Investigator Award in Biomedical and Behavioral Research (K26) mechanism.  The 
purpose of the K26 award is to provide grant support for biomedical and 
behavioral scientists to allow them protected time to devote to their research 
and mentoring. Planning, direction, and execution of the program will be the 
responsibility of the candidate on behalf of the applicant institution.  The 
project period may be for up to five years (at least three years are 
required).  Awards are renewable for one additional five year period if the 
candidate still meets the stated requirements. 

The overall goal of the awarding Institute or Center (IC), i.e., the National 
Center for Research Resources (NCRR) or National Institute on Aging (NIA) is 
to support between four and six new awards in Fiscal Year 2001 and in each 
succeeding year through Fiscal Year 2004.  The actual number of awards to be 
made will vary yearly and will be dependent upon the number and quality of 
applications submitted and funds available.

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES

A.  Environment:  The institution must have a well-established research and 
career development program.  The institution must be able to demonstrate a 
commitment to the candidate as a productive, independent investigator.  The 
candidate and institution must be able to describe a career program that will 
utilize the relevant research and educational resources, and the institution 
must certify that the candidate will be released from other duties and be able 
to devote up to 50 percent effort (at least 25 percent effort) to a mouse 
pathobiology research program. The institution must demonstrate the 
availability of beginning research-oriented investigators who will be 
mentored.

B.  Program:  The award provides up to five consecutive 12-month awards. Up to 
50 percent of the investigator"s effort (at least 25 percent) must be devoted 
to the mouse pathobiology research program and mentoring.  The remainder may 
be devoted to other clinical, teaching, or research pursuits consonant with 
the objectives of the award. The research phase of an award period must be 
devoted to mouse pathobiology research in scientific areas relevant to the 
career goals of the candidate. 

C.  Allowable Costs:

1.  Salary:  The NIH will provide salary and commensurate fringe benefits for 
the award recipient for up to 50 percent effort, up to the level of the 
current NIH extramural salary cap (in FY 2001, $161,200 per annum, or a 
maximum of $80,600 for 50 percent effort).  At least 25 percent effort is 
required.  The institution may supplement the NIH contribution up to a level 
that is consistent with the institution"s salary scale.  Institutional 
supplementation of salary must not require extra duties or responsibilities 
that would interfere with the purpose of the award.

The total salary requested must be based on a full-time, 12-month staff 
appointment.  It must be consistent both with the established salary structure 
at the institution and with salaries actually provided by the institution from 
its own funds to other staff members of equivalent qualifications, rank, and 
responsibilities in the department concerned.  If full-time, 12-month salaries 
are not currently paid to comparable staff members, the salary proposed must 
be appropriately related to the existing salary structure.

2.  Research Development Support:  The awarding IC (NCRR or NIA) will provide 
generally up to $25,000 per year for the following expenses:  (a) research 
expenses, such as supplies, equipment and technical personnel for the 
principal investigator and his/her mentored investigators, (b) travel to 
research meetings or training, and c) statistical services including personnel 
and computer time.

3.  Ancillary Personnel Support:  Salary for secretarial and administrative 
assistance etc., is not allowed. 

4.  Facilities and Administrative costs:  These costs will be reimbursed at 8 
percent of modified total direct costs. 

D.  Evaluation:  In carrying out its stewardship of human resource related 
programs, the NIH may request information essential to an assessment of the 
effectiveness of this program. Accordingly, recipients are hereby notified 
that they may be contacted after the completion of this award for periodic 
updates on various aspects of their employment history, publications, support 
from research grants or contracts, honors and awards, professional activities, 
and other information helpful in evaluating the impact of the program. 

E.  Special Leave:  Leave to another institution, including a foreign 
laboratory, may be permitted if directly related to the purpose of the award. 
 Only local, institutional approval is required if such leave does not exceed 
3 months.  For longer periods, prior written approval of the NIH funding 
component is required. To obtain prior approval, the award recipient must 
submit a letter to the awarding IC describing the plan, countersigned by his 
or her department head and the appropriate institutional official.  A copy of 
a letter or other evidence from the institution where the leave is to be taken 
must be submitted to assure that satisfactory arrangements have been made.  
Support from the career award will continue during such leave.

Leave without award support may not exceed 12 months.  Such leave requires the 
prior written approval of the NIH funding component and will be granted only 
in unusual situations.  Support from other sources is permissible during the 
period of leave.  Such leave does not reduce the total number of months of 
program support for which an individual is eligible.  Parental leave will be 
granted consistent with the policies of the NIH and the grantee institution.  

F.  Termination or Change of Institution:  When a grantee institution plans to 
terminate an award, the grants management staff at the awarding IC (NCRR or 
NIA) must be notified in writing at the earliest possible time so that 
appropriate instructions can be given for termination.  If the individual is 
moving to another eligible institution, career award support may be continued 
provided:

A new career award application is submitted by the new institution, 

All conditions of the award are met at the new institution,

The period of support requested is no more than the time remaining within the 
existing award period, and

The new application is submitted far enough in advance of the requested 
effective date to allow the necessary time for review by IC staff.

The NIH may discontinue an award upon determination that the purpose or terms 
of the award are not being fulfilled.  In the event an award is terminated, 
the Director of the NIH shall notify the grantee institution and career award 
recipient in writing of this determination, the reasons therefor, the 
effective date, and the right to appeal the decision.

A final progress report, invention statement, and Financial Status Report are 
required upon either termination of an award or relinquishment of an award in 
a change of institution situation.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

All candidates are strongly encouraged to contact the program staff listed 
under INQUIRIES.  Such contact should occur early in the planning phase of 
application preparation.  Such contact will help ensure that applications are 
responsive to the goals and policies of the participating IC. For applications 
relating to animal models, the IC contact would be the NCRR.  For applications 
relating to aging, the IC contact would be the NIA.

Applications are to be submitted on the grant application form PHS 398 (rev. 
4/98), using the instructions in Section IV as appropriate) and will be 
accepted on or before the receipt dates indicated in the application kit.   
Forms are available at most institutional offices of sponsored research and 
from the Division of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources, National
Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD 20892-7910, 
Phone (301) 435-0714, FAX: (301) 480-0525, Email: Grantsinfo@nih.gov.  Forms 
are also available on the NIH Website at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/forms.htm 

To identify the application as a response to this program announcement, check 
"YES" on item 2 of page 1 of the application and enter the number and title of 
this program announcement.   Submit a signed, typewritten original of the 
application with five signed photocopies, in one package to:

CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC REVIEW
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040 - MSC 7710
BETHESDA, MD  20892-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)

The application must contain the following:

Candidate

o  Evidence of the candidate"s ability to conduct high quality mouse 
pathobiology research.

o A description of immediate and long-term career objectives, explaining how 
the award will contribute to their attainment.

o A description of how the candidate will use the relief from institutional 
service or administrative duties to expand his or her expertise in mouse 
pathobiological research.

o A description with evidence of the candidate"s commitment to a career in 
mouse pathobiology research.

o This description of the candidate should not exceed six pages of the 25 page 
limit.  One to two pages should be devoted to the candidate"s background (high 
quality mouse research), two to four pages to the candidate"s immediate and 
long-term career goals, and one to two pages to the candidate"s commitment to 
a career in mouse pathobiology research.  

Mentoring Plan

o A demonstrated record of mentoring or training beginning investigators 
(e.g., graduate students, residents, post-doctoral fellows, visiting 
scientists) or a demonstration of the capability to provide mentoring to 
beginning investigators.

o A description of plans for providing mentoring opportunities to beginning 
investigators, including a description of the types of investigators that 
could be mentored, plans for recruiting and selecting such individuals, and 
the training and educational experiences to be provided.

Research Plan

o A commitment of up to 50 percent effort (at least 25 percent effort) to the 
mouse pathobiology research program.

o A description of ongoing mouse pathobiology research. The research plan 
should briefly describe the specific aims, background and significance, and 
the research design and methods of the study.  Emphasis should be given to the 
initial three years of the award.		

o This description of the research plan should not exceed 20 pages of the 25 
page limit that includes the description of the candidate.  One to two pages 
should be devoted to state the hypothesis and specific aims, two to four pages 
should state the background, significance, and rationale, and two to four 
pages should summarize previous studies and their results.  

o Documentation that appropriate and adequate resources, both in terms of 
support and facilities, are available to the candidate, to conduct the 
research program.  This must include a description of other monetary support 
that will be utilized to conduct the research program.

Environment and Institutional Commitment

o The sponsoring institution must document a strong, well-established mouse 
pathobiology research and training program related to the candidate"s area of 
interest including a high-quality research environment with staff capable of 
productive collaboration with the candidate.  The sponsoring institution also 
must provide a statement of commitment to enhancing the candidate"s ability as 
a productive, independent investigator.

o The sponsoring institution must provide documentation that the candidate 
will be relieved from other duties, i.e. animal care, facility management, 
administrative, etc., to allow him/her to devote time to the mouse 
pathobiology research program.

Budget Instructions

The total direct costs must be requested in accordance with the K26 program 
guidelines, following the budget instructions described in the Career Award 
Section of the PHS 398 (rev. 4/98). 

Biographical Sketch

A biographical sketch is required for all key personnel, following the 
instructions in the career award section of the PHS 398 (rev. 4/98).

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Applications will be reviewed for completeness by the Center for Scientific 
Review and for responsiveness to this program announcement by the awarding IC 
staff.  Incomplete and/or non-responsive applications will be returned to the 
applicant without further consideration. Applications that are complete and 
responsive to the program announcement will be evaluated for scientific and 
technical merit by a peer review group convened by the awarding IC in 
accordance with the standard NIH peer review procedures. As part of the 
initial merit review, all applications will receive a written critique and 
undergo a process in which only those applications deemed to have the highest 
scientific merit, generally the top half of applications under review, will be 
discussed, assigned a priority score, and receive a second level review by the 
National Advisory Research Resources Council (NARRC) or the National Advisory 
Council on Aging (NACA).

The following review criteria will be applied:

Candidate

o Quality of the candidate"s academic and professional record, including 
capabilities and commitment to serve as a mentor, 

o Evidence of ongoing high quality mouse pathobiology research and the 
relationship of that research to this program,

o Potential to conduct quality mouse pathobiology research, 

o Commitment to a mouse pathobiology research career,

o Appropriateness of the content and duration of the proposed research 
program,

o Evidence of monetary support for the proposed research.

Mentoring Plan

o Experience serving as a mentor, this mentoring may include graduate 
students, residents, junior professionals, or visiting scientists who seek 
training in mouse pathobiology. 

o Adequacy of the plans for mentoring or supervising beginning investigators 
in mouse pathobiology, plans for the potential development and expansion of 
the training plan.  

Research Plan

Although it is understood that the K26 application does not require the level 
of detail necessary in other research grant applications, a fundamentally 
sound research plan must be provided for award years one through three.  In 
general, less detail is expected of the planned research for years four and 
five (if appropriate), but the application should outline the general goals 
for those years.  

o Appropriateness of the research plan to capitalize on the growing 
opportunities of available mouse pathobiology resources and to expand 
technical skills,

o Scientific and technical merits of the proposed research,

o Relevance of the proposed research to the candidate"s career objectives,

o Availability of adequate resources to conduct the proposed research,

o Demonstration that the proposed program will relieve the candidate from 
other service or administrative duties and allow him/her to devote time to 
mouse pathobiology research.

Environment and Institutional Commitment

o  Applicant institution"s commitment to the scientific development of the 
candidate and assurances that the institution intends the candidate to be an 
integral part of its research program,

o Adequacy of research facilities and the availability of appropriate 
educational opportunities,

o Quality and relevance of the environment for scientific and professional 
development of the candidate and others pursuing mouse pathobiology research, 
and

o Applicant institution"s commitment to provide adequate time for conduct of 
the research program.

AWARD CRITERIA

The institute or center will notify the applicant of the appropriate Council"s 
action shortly after its meeting.  Funding decisions will be made based on the 
recommendations of the initial review group, NARRC or NACA, the need for 
research personnel in specific program areas, and the availability of funds.  
The NIH policy on submission of revised (amended) applications limits the 
number of such applications to two.

INQUIRIES

Written and telephone inquiries concerning this program announcement are 
strongly encouraged especially during the planning phase of the application. 

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to: 

Franziska Grieder, D.V.M., Ph.D.
Comparative Medicine area
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6050
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0744
FAX:  (301) 480-3819
Email: griederf@ncrr.nih.gov

Directed inquiries regarding research and training related to age-related 
pathology to:

Huber R. Warner, Ph.D.
Biology of Aging Program
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building, Room 2C231
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-6402
FAX:  (301) 402-0010	
Email:  warnerh@exmur.nia.nih.gov

Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:

Ms. Irene Grissom				
Office of Grants Management
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6086
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0844
FAX:  (301) 480-3777
Email: grissomi@ncrr.nih.gov

Linda Whipp
Grants and Contracts Management Office
National Institute on Aging
7201 Wisconsin Avenue, Gateway Building, Suite 2N212
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-1472
FAX:  (301) 402-3672
Email: whippl@gw.nia.nih.gov

URLS IN NIH GRANT APPLICATIONS OR APPENDICES

All applications and proposals for NIH funding must be self-contained within 
specified page limitations.  Unless otherwise specified in an NIH 
solicitation, Internet addresses (URLs) should not be used to provide 
information necessary to the review because reviewers are under no obligation 
to view the Internet sites.  Reviewers are cautioned that their anonymity may 
be comprised when they directly access an Internet site. 

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2010

The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health promotion 
and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2010," a PHS-led national 
activity for setting priority areas. This PAR, Midcareer Investigator Award in 
Mouse Pathobiology Research, is related to one or more of the priority areas. 
Potential candidates may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2010" from the 
Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 
20402-9325 (telephone 202/512-1800) or electronically 
(http://www.health.gov/healthypeople).

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Nos. 
93.855 and 93.856.  Awards are made under the authority of title III, Section 
301 of the PHS Act as amended.  The Code of Federal Regulations, Title 42 Part 
52 and Title 45 Part 74, are applicable to this program.  This program is not 
subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 
to Health Systems Agency review.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to provide a 
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco products. In 
addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking 
in certain facilities (or in some cases, and portion of a facility) in which 
regular or routine education, library, day care, health care or early 
childhood development services are provided to children. This is consistent 
with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of 
the American people.



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