Part I Overview Information

Department of Health and Human Services

Participating Organizations 
National Institutes of Health (NIH), (http://www.nih.gov)

Components of Participating Organizations
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), (http://www.ninds.nih.gov)
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal, and Skin Diseases, (NIAMS), (http://www.niams.nih.gov)

Title: Translational Research in Muscular Dystrophy (U01)

Announcement Type 
New

Update: The following update relating to this announcement has been issued:

Looking Ahead: As part of the Department of Health and Human Services' implementation of e-Government, during FY 2006 the NIH will gradually transition each research grant mechanism to electronic submission through Grants.gov and the use of the SF 424 Research and Related (R&R) forms. Therefore, once the transition is made for a specific grant mechanism, investigators and institutions will be required to submit applications electronically using Grants.gov.. For more information and an initial timeline, see http://era.nih.gov/ElectronicReceipt/. NIH will announce each grant mechanism change in the NIH Guide to Grants and Contracts (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/index.html). Specific funding opportunity announcements will also clearly indicate if Grants.gov submission and the use of the SF424 (R&R) is required. Investigators should consult the NIH Forms and Applications Web site (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/forms.htm) for the most current information when preparing a grant application.

Program Announcement (PA) Number: PAR-06-044

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number(s)  
93.853, 93.846

Key Dates
Release Date: November 30, 2005
Letters of Intent Receipt Date(s): Not Applicable
Application Submission Date(s): Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details   
Peer Review Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details   
Council Review Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details   
Earliest Anticipated Start Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details   
Additional Information To Be Available Date (Url Activation Date): Not Applicable
Expiration Date: November 2, 2008 (now January 8, 2009 per NOT-OD-07-093)

Due Dates for E.O. 12372
Not Applicable

Additional Overview Content

Executive Summary

This funding opportunity will utilize the UO1 mechanism, but will be run in parallel with a program announcement of identical scientific scope, “Exploratory/Developmental Program for Translational Research in Muscular Dystrophy (R21)” (PAR-06-043) that will utilize the Exploratory/Developmental (R21) mechanism.

Table of Contents

Part I Overview Information

Part II Full Text of Announcement

Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
    1. Research Objectives

Section II. Award Information
    1. Mechanism(s) of Support
    2. Funds Available

Section III. Eligibility Information
    1. Eligible Applicants
        A. Eligible Institutions
        B. Eligible Individuals
    2.Cost Sharing or Matching
    3. Other - Special Eligibility Criteria

Section IV. Application and Submission Information
    1. Address to Request Application Information
    2. Content and Form of Application Submission
    3. Submission Dates and Times
        A. Submission, Review and Anticipated Start Dates
            1. Letter of Intent
        B. Sending an Application to the NIH
        C. Application Processing
    4. Intergovernmental Review
    5. Funding Restrictions
    6. Other Submission Requirements

Section V. Application Review Information
    1. Criteria
    2. Review and Selection Process
        A. Additional Review Criteria
        B. Additional Review Considerations
        C. Sharing Research Data
        D. Sharing Research Resources
    3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

Section VI. Award Administration Information
    1. Award Notices
    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements  
        A. Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award
            1. Principal Investigator Rights and Responsibilities
            2. NIH Responsibilities
            3. Collaborative Responsibilities
            4. Arbitration Process
    3. Reporting

Section VII. Agency Contact(s)
    1. Scientific/Research Contact(s)
    2. Peer Review Contact(s)
    3. Financial/ Grants Management Contact(s)

Section VIII. Other Information - Required Federal Citations

Part II - Full Text of Announcement

Section I. Funding Opportunity Description


1. Research Objectives

Purpose of this PA

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases invite investigator-initiated applications for translational research projects in muscular dystrophy. The muscular dystrophies are progressive, degenerative disorders affecting skeletal and cardiac muscle. Despite substantial research efforts, there are few therapies that are effective in even slowing the course of muscular dystrophy. Although the genetic basis and downstream pathogenic mechanisms are known for many of the muscular dystrophies, there is currently no consensus as to which of several potential treatment strategies, or combination of strategies, may ultimately prove successful in reducing patient morbidity and mortality.

This PA is to implement a broad-based, translational research program of cooperative agreements that will lead to new and more effective treatments for muscular dystrophy. The focus of this program is to exploit the accumulated knowledge of the genetic basis and pathogenic mechanisms in the muscular dystrophies (including congenital, Duchenne/Becker, Emery-Dreifuss, facioscapulohumeral, limb girdle, myotonic, and oculopharyngeal and others) in the design and testing of treatments with potential for reducing the clinical burden of disease.

Applicants may propose therapeutic development activities that are directed toward either the primary genetic mechanisms specific to any single type of muscular dystrophy or the secondary pathogenic mechanisms that may be conserved across several of the muscular dystrophies. Skeletal and cardiac muscles are involved in many of the muscular dystrophies, and therapeutic development strategies can target either or both tissues.

Applications must specifically address those pre-clinical development and testing activities that are necessary to discover new therapies for the muscular dystrophies. Basic or mechanistic studies are not responsive and will not be supported by this PA, nor will clinical trials. Applicants that need basic or mechanistic data as a prerequisite to the development of a translational research proposal should consider applications for PA-05-038, Muscular Dystrophy: Pathogenesis and Therapies (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-05-038.html). Applicants that have adequate translational research data, and are seeking NIH support for clinical trials in muscular dystrophy, should contact NINDS or NIAMS program staff.

Definition of Translational Research

Translational research is the process of applying ideas, insights, and discoveries generated through basic scientific inquiry to the treatment or prevention of human disease.

The scope of this program includes only activities directly focused on pre-clinical therapy development necessary to begin clinical testing. Mechanistic or basic studies will not be supported, nor will clinical trials. Projects will typically include either an assay that has demonstrated relevance to muscular dystrophy, or candidate therapeutics that have a significant effect in an animal model of the disorder.

Translational research proceeds through a number of stages toward therapy development.  Specific project milestones can be defined based on these stages, and applications for these cooperative agreements should include a linear timeline or flowchart of project tasks and milestones.  Early stages lead to the identification and characterization of candidate therapeutics, and late stages include preclinical development and submission of an Investigational New Drug (IND) or Investigational Device Exemptions (IDE) application to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  In many cases, early-stage projects will be unable to achieve an IND or IDE within a single project period.

Research Objectives

This objective of this PA is to encourage the development and implementation of translational research programs in muscular dystrophy. Applications should directly address one or more of the muscular dystrophies, by having a basis in established disease mechanisms or in therapies previously shown to have potential efficacy in muscular dystrophy. Applicants are encouraged to exploit any strategy with potential for reducing the clinical burden of muscular dystrophy in order to develop innovative and novel approaches for treatment of these diseases. Examples that illustrate possible therapeutic strategies are listed below. These are intended to provide a broad direction for research and should not be considered as limitations on proposals.

Description of the Program

Collaborative agreement translational research projects (U01) support research focused on a single approach in therapy development.  Applications should describe milestone-driven projects that focus upon the identification and pre-clinical testing of therapies suitable for one or more of the muscular dystrophies. NINDS and NIAMS strongly encourage collaboration or consultation between basic and clinical scientists. The specific milestones in progress toward therapies must be met prior to funding of the next budget period. Early project stages lead to identification and characterization of candidate therapeutics, while late stages include preclinical development and submission of an Investigational New Drug (IND) or Investigational Device Exemption (IDE) applications to the Food and Drug Administration. 

NIH strongly encourages collaborative efforts between basic and clinical scientists in the development of translational research projects. Required characteristics of the Single Component translational research program are listed below.

Research project funding can be used to support the translational research process through an IND or IDE application to the FDA. Projects may, however, collaborate on relevant Phase I, II, and III clinical trials that are supported with other NINDS or NIAMS funding mechanisms.

For additional information on the scope and objectives of the U01 program, applicants are strongly encouraged to review http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-05-158.html and to discuss applications at an early stage of development with NIH program staff.

Investigators with a need to develop candidate therapeutics, models, and assays for use in translational research projects should consider the R21 Exploratory/Developmental Program for Translational Research in Muscular Dystrophy program (PAR-06-043).

See Section VIII, Other Information - Required Federal Citations, for policies related to this announcement.

Section II. Award Information

1. Mechanism(s) of Support

This funding opportunity will use the NIH Research Project (U01) award mechanism. 

This funding opportunity uses the just-in-time budget concepts. It also uses the non-modular budget format described in the PHS 398 application instructions (see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html). A detailed categorical budget for the "Initial Budget Period" and the "Entire Proposed Period of Support" is to be submitted with the application.

The NIH U01 is a cooperative agreement award mechanism. In the cooperative agreement mechanism, the Principal Investigator retains the primary responsibility and dominant role for planning, directing, and executing the proposed project, with NIH staff being substantially involved as a partner with the Principal Investigator, as described under the Section VI. 2. Administrative Requirements, "Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award".

2. Funds Available

The participating organizations intend to commit approximately $1,000,000/year to this Program Announcement with set-aside funds. The total amount awarded and the number of awards will depend upon the mechanism, duration, and costs of the applications received, and are contingent upon the availability of funds and the receipt of a sufficient number of meritorious applications. Because the nature and scope of the proposed research will vary from application to application, it is anticipated that the size and duration of each award will also vary. Although the financial plans of the ICs provide support for this program, awards pursuant to this funding opportunity are contingent upon the availability of funds and the receipt of a sufficient number of meritorious applications. Applications submitted in response to this program announcement will be accepted at the standard application deadlines (see: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm). The earliest possible start date for applications submitted in response to this program announcement is December 2006.

Facilities and administrative costs requested by consortium participants are not included in the direct cost limitation, see NOT-OD-05-004.

Section III. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants

1.A. Eligible Institutions

You may submit (an) application(s) if your organization has any of the following characteristics:

1.B. Eligible Individuals

Any individual with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research is invited to work with their institution to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for NIH programs.
 
2. Cost Sharing or Matching

 Cost sharing not required.

The most current Grants Policy Statement can be found at: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/nihgps_Part2.htm#matching_or_cost_sharing

3. Other-Special Eligibility Criteria
 
Overall Plan for Therapy Development and Milestones:

Projects submitted must include an overall plan for therapy development. This plan is based on a clearly stated project timeline that includes practical, achievable goals, and project milestones. Milestones toward therapeutic intervention are goals that create go/no-go decision points in the project, including quantitative success criteria. All assays and animal models that will be used during pre-clinical development must be available and working; assay and animal model development are outside the scope of the program. Any collaborators, consultants, or subcontractors should be identified, no matter when during the conduct of the activity the proposed interaction occurs. It is not required that an IND or IDE is achieved during the first project period, but the plan to complete pre-clinical development should be presented in the application. Since translational research is intrinsically interdisciplinary, this plan will often involve cooperation among basic researchers and clinicians, and may include the participation of private-sector companies and voluntary organizations.

Section IV. Application and Submission Information

1. Address to Request Application Information

The PHS 398 application instructions are available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html in an interactive format. Applicants must use the currently approved version of the PHS 398. For further assistance contact GrantsInfo, Telephone (301) 435-0714, Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov.

Telecommunications for the hearing impaired: TTY 301-451-5936.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

Applications must be prepared using the most current PHS 398 research grant application instructions and forms. Applications must have a D&B Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number as the universal identifier when applying for Federal grants or cooperative agreements. The D&B number can be obtained by calling (866) 705-5711 or through the web site at http://www.dnb.com/us/. The D&B number should be entered on line 11 of the face page of the PHS 398 form.

The title and number of this funding opportunity must be typed on line 2 of the face page of the application form and the YES box must be checked.

Foreign Organizations

Several special provisions apply to applications submitted by foreign organizations:

3.A. Submission, Review and Anticipated Start Dates

Letter of Intent Submission Date: Not Applicable
Application Submission Date(s): Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details
Peer Review Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details
Council Review Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm for details
Earliest Anticipated Start Date: Standard dates apply, please see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/submissionschedule.htm  for details

3.A.1. Letter of Intent
A letter of intent is not required for the funding opportunity.

3.B. Sending an Application to the NIH

 Applications must be prepared using the research grant application forms found in the PHS 398 instructions for preparing a research grant application. Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including the checklist, and three 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 (U.S. Postal Service Express or regular mail)
Bethesda, MD 20817 (for express/courier service; non-USPS service)

Personal deliveries of applications are no longer permitted (see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-03-040.html).

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application and all copies of the appendix material must be sent to:

Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Room 3201, MSC 9529
6001 Executive Boulevard
Bethesda, MD 20892-9529
(Rockville, MD 20852 for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 496-9223
Fax: (301) 402-0182
E-mail: nindsreview.nih.gov@mail.nih.gov

3.C. Application Processing
 
Applications must be submitted on or before the application receipt/submission dates described above (Section IV.3.A.) and at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/dates.htm.

Upon receipt applications will be evaluated for completeness by CSR. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

The NIH will not accept any application in response to this funding opportunity that is essentially the same as one currently pending initial merit review unless the applicant withdraws the pending application. The NIH will not accept any application that is essentially the same as one already reviewed. This does not preclude the submission of a substantial revision of an application already reviewed, but such application must include an Introduction addressing the previous critique.

Although there is no immediate acknowledgement of the receipt of an application, applicants are generally notified of the review and funding assignment within eight (8) weeks.

4. Intergovernmental Review
This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

5. Funding Restrictions

All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement. The Grants Policy Statement can be found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/policy.htm.
 
Pre-Award Costs are allowable. A grantee may, at its own risk and without NIH prior approval, incur obligations and expenditures to cover costs up to 90 days before the beginning date of the initial budget period of a new or competing continuation award if such costs: are necessary to conduct the project, and would be allowable under the grant, if awarded, without NIH prior approval. If specific expenditures would otherwise require prior approval, the grantee must obtain NIH approval before incurring the cost. NIH prior approval is required for any costs to be incurred more than 90 days before the beginning date of the initial budget period of a new or competing continuation award.

The incurrence of pre-award costs in anticipation of a competing or non-competing award imposes no obligation on NIH either to make the award or to increase the amount of the approved budget if an award is made for less than the amount anticipated and is inadequate to cover the pre-award costs incurred. NIH expects the grantee to be fully aware that pre-award costs result in borrowing against future support and that such borrowing must not impair the grantee's ability to accomplish the project objectives in the approved time frame or in any way adversely affect the conduct of the project. See NIH Grants Policy Statement http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/NIHGPS_Part6.htm.
 
6. Other Submission Requirements

Applications requesting up to $250,000 per year in direct costs must be submitted in a modular budget format. The modular budget format simplifies the preparation of the budget in these applications by limiting the level of budgetary detail. Applicants request direct costs in $25,000 modules. Section C of the research grant application instructions for the PHS 398 at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html includes step-by-step guidance for preparing modular budgets. Applicants must use the currently approved version of the PHS 398. Additional information on modular budgets is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/modular/modular.htm.

Specific Instructions for Applications Requesting $500,000 (direct costs) or More per Year.

Applicants requesting $500,000 or more in direct costs for any year must carry out the following steps:

1) Contact the IC program staff at least 6 weeks before submitting the application, i.e., as you are developing plans for the study;

2) Obtain agreement from the IC staff that the IC will accept your application for consideration for award; and,

3) Include a cover letter with the application that identifies the staff member and IC who agreed to accept assignment of the application.

This policy applies to all investigator-initiated new (type 1), competing continuation (type 2), competing supplement, or any amended or revised version of these grant application types. Additional information on this policy is available in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, October 19, 2001 at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-02-004.html.

Plan for Sharing Research Data
 
The precise content of the data-sharing plan will vary, depending on the data being collected and how the investigator is planning to share the data. Applicants who are planning to share data may wish to describe briefly the expected schedule for data sharing, the format of the final dataset, the documentation to be provided, whether or not any analytic tools also will be provided, whether or not a data-sharing agreement will be required and, if so, a brief description of such an agreement (including the criteria for deciding who can receive the data and whether or not any conditions will be placed on their use), and the mode of data sharing (e.g., under their own auspices by mailing a disk or posting data on their institutional or personal website, through a data archive or enclave). Investigators choosing to share under their own auspices may wish to enter into a data-sharing agreement. References to data sharing may also be appropriate in other sections of the application.

 All applicants must include a plan for sharing research data in their application. The data sharing policy is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/data_sharing. All investigators responding to this funding opportunity should include a description of how final research data will be shared, or explain why data sharing is not possible.

The reasonableness of the data sharing plan or the rationale for not sharing research data will be assessed by the reviewers. However, reviewers will not factor the proposed data sharing plan into the determination of scientific merit or the priority score.  

Sharing Research Resources

NIH policy requires that grant awardee recipients make unique research resources readily available for research purposes to qualified individuals within the scientific community after publication (NIH Grants Policy Statement http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/index.htm and http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/NIHGPS_Part7.htm#_Toc54600131). Investigators responding to this funding opportunity should include a plan for sharing research resources addressing how unique research resources will be shared or explain why sharing is not possible.

The adequacy of the resources sharing plan and any related data sharing plans will be considered by Program staff of the funding organization when making recommendations about funding applications. The effectiveness of the resource sharing will be evaluated as part of the administrative review of each non-competing Grant Progress Report (PHS 2590, http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/2590/2590.htm). See Section VI.3. Reporting.

Section V. Application Review Information

1. Criteria (Update: Enhanced review criteria have been issued for the evaluation of research applications received for potential FY2010 funding and thereafter - see NOT-OD-09-025).
Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process.

2. Review and Selection Process

Applications that are complete will be assigned to NINDS and will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate review group convened by NINDS in accordance with the review criteria stated below.

As part of the initial merit review, all applications will:

The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

The goals of NIH supported research are to advance our understanding of biological systems, to improve the control of disease, and to enhance health. In their written critiques, reviewers will be asked to comment on each of the following criteria in order to judge the likelihood that the proposed research will have a substantial impact on the pursuit of these goals. Each of these criteria will be addressed and considered in assigning the overall score, weighting them as appropriate for each application. Note that an application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact and thus deserve a high priority score. For example, an investigator may propose to carry out important work that by its nature is not innovative but is essential to move a field forward.

Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge or clinical practice be advanced? What will be the effect of these studies on the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field?

Approach: Are the conceptual or clinical framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well integrated, well reasoned, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics?

Innovation: Is the project original and innovative? For example: Does the project challenge existing paradigms or clinical practice; address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to progress in the field? Does the project develop or employ novel concepts, approaches, methodologies, tools, or technologies for this area?

Investigators: Are the investigators appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level of the principal investigator and other researchers? Does the investigative team bring complementary and integrated expertise to the project (if applicable)?

Environment: Does the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Do the proposed studies benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, or subject populations, or employ useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of institutional support?

2.A. Additional Review Criteria:

In addition to the above criteria, the following items will continue to be considered in the determination of scientific merit and the priority score:

Protection of Human Subjects from Research Risk: The involvement of human subjects and protections from research risk relating to their participation in the proposed research will be assessed (see the Research Plan, Section E on Human Subjects in the PHS Form 398).

Inclusion of Women, Minorities and Children in Research: The adequacy of plans to include subjects from both genders, all racial and ethnic groups (and subgroups), and children as appropriate for the scientific goals of the research will be assessed. Plans for the recruitment and retention of subjects will also be evaluated (see the Research Plan, Section E on Human Subjects in the PHS Form 398).

Care and Use of Vertebrate Animals in Research: If vertebrate animals are to be used in the project, the five items described under Section F of the PHS Form 398 research grant application instructions will be assessed.

Biohazards: If materials or procedures are proposed that are potentially hazardous to research personnel and/or the environment, determine if the proposed protection is adequate.

2.B. Additional Review Considerations

Budget: The reasonableness of the proposed budget and the requested period of support in relation to the proposed research. The priority score should not be affected by the evaluation of the budget.

2.C. Sharing Research Data

Data Sharing Plan: The reasonableness of the data sharing plan or the rationale for not sharing research data will be assessed by the reviewers. However, reviewers will not factor the proposed data sharing plan into the determination of scientific merit or the priority score. The presence of a data sharing plan will be part of the terms and conditions of the award. The funding organization will be responsible for monitoring the data sharing policy.

Program staff will be responsible for the administrative review of the plan for sharing research data.

2.D. Sharing Research Resources

 NIH policy requires that grant awardee recipients make unique research resources readily available for research purposes to qualified individuals within the scientific community after publication (See the NIH Grants Policy Statement http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps/part_ii_5.htm#availofrr and http://www.ott.nih.gov/policy/rt_guide_final.html). Investigators responding to this funding opportunity should include a sharing research resources plan addressing how unique research resources will be shared or explain why sharing is not possible.

Program staff will be responsible for the administrative review of the plan for sharing research resources.

The adequacy of the resources sharing plan will be considered by Program staff of the funding organization when making recommendations about funding applications. Program staff may negotiate modifications of the data and resource sharing plans with the awardee before recommending funding of an application. The final version of the data and resource sharing plans negotiated by both will become a condition of the award of the grant. The effectiveness of the resource sharing will be evaluated as part of the administrative review of each non-competing Grant Progress Report (PHS 2590). See Section VI.3. Reporting.

3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates
Not Applicable

Section VI. Award Administration Information

1. Award Notices

If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant. For details, applicants may refer to the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/NIHGPS_part4.htm).

A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document. Once all administrative and programmatic issues have been resolved, the NoA will be generated via email notification from the awarding component to the grantee business official (designated in item 14 on the Application Face Page). If a grantee is not email enabled, a hard copy of the NoA will be mailed to the business official.

Selection of an application for award is not an authorization to begin performance. Any costs incurred before receipt of the NoA are at the recipient's risk. These costs may be reimbursed only to the extent considered allowable pre-award costs. See Also Section IV.5. Funding Restrictions.

2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

 All NIH grant and cooperative agreement awards include the NIH Grants Policy Statement as part of the NoA. For these terms of award, see the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/NIHGPS_Part4.htm) and Part II Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/NIHGPS_part9.htm).

The following Terms and Conditions will be incorporated into the award statement and will be provided to the Principal Investigator as well as to the appropriate institutional official, at the time of award.

 2.A. Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

The following special terms of award are in addition to, and not in lieu of, otherwise applicable OMB administrative guidelines, HHS grant administration regulations at 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92 (Part 92 is applicable when State and local Governments are eligible to apply), and other HHS, PHS, and NIH grant administration policies.

The administrative and funding instrument used for this program will be the cooperative agreement (U01), an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an "acquisition" mechanism), in which substantial NIH programmatic involvement with the awardees is anticipated during the performance of the activities. Under the cooperative agreement, the NIH purpose is to support and stimulate the recipients' activities by involvement in and otherwise working jointly with the award recipients in a partnership role; it is not to assume direction, prime responsibility, or a dominant role in the activities. Consistent with this concept, the dominant role and prime responsibility resides with the awardees for the project as a whole, although specific tasks and activities may be shared among the awardees and the NIH as defined above.

See additional terms and conditions in PAR-05-158 (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PAR-05-158.html).

2.A.1. Principal Investigator Rights and Responsibilities

The Principal Investigator will have the primary responsibility to define objectives and approaches, and to plan, conduct, analyze, and publish results, interpretations, and conclusions of their studies.

Awardees are responsible for identifying specific milestones toward disease intervention that will be achieved during the project period.

Awardees agree to participate in the overall coordination of NINDS research efforts in translational research. This participation may include collaboration and consultation with other translational research awardees, and the sharing of information, data, and research materials.

Awardees will retain custody of and have primary rights to the data and software developed under these awards, subject to Government rights of access consistent with current HHS, PHS, and NIH policies.

2.A.2. NIH Responsibilities

For U01 Cooperative Agreements, an NIH Project Scientist will have substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the normal stewardship role in awards, as described below.

Each project will have the support of one or more Project Scientists from program staff who are assigned an administrative role for the muscular dystrophy being studied and have expertise in the implementation of the NINDS Cooperative Program in Translational Research.

The Project Scientists will have substantial scientific-programmatic involvement during conduct of this activity, through technical assistance, advice, and coordination above and beyond normal program stewardship for grants.

Project Scientists will be responsible for assessing the progress of the projects toward the accomplishment of specified milestones, and for recommending if further funds should be released to the project.

The Project Scientists will facilitate the establishment of contacts and collaborations between awardees of the cooperative program and other persons or organizations whose participation will assist with the accomplishment of project goals. These persons or organizations may include the FDA, disease voluntary organizations, pharmaceutical companies, or research organizations that can provide essential services on contract.

An important part of the program in translational research is the coordination of research efforts across different funding mechanisms and research structures, and coordination among efforts aimed at different neurological disorders. Project Scientists will have the primary responsibility for this overall coordination.

The program director will be responsible for normal stewardship of the award, and may also serve as a Project Scientist.
 
2.A.3. Collaborative Responsibilities
Not applicable.

2.A.4. Arbitration Process

Any disagreements that may arise in scientific or programmatic matters (within the scope of the award) between award recipients and the NIH may be brought to arbitration. This special arbitration procedure in no way affects the awardee's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in accordance with PHS regulations 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D and HHS regulations 45 CFR Part 16.

3. Reporting  

Awardees will be required to submit the PHS Non-Competing Grant Progress Report, Form 2590 annually (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/2590/2590.htm) and financial statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

Section VII. Agency Contacts

We encourage your inquiries concerning this funding opportunity and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants. Inquiries may fall into three areas: scientific/research, peer review, and financial or grants management issues:

1. Scientific/Research Contacts:

John D. Porter, Ph.D.
Channels, Synapses, and Circuits Cluster
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
6001 Executive Blvd., Room 2142 
Bethesda, MD 20892 (Rockville, MD 20852 for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 496-1917
FAX: (301) 402-1501
Email: porterjo@ninds.nih.gov

Glen H. Nuckolls, Ph.D.
Director, Muscle Disorders and Therapies Program
Musculoskeletal Diseases Branch
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
One Democracy Plaza
6701 Democracy Boulevard, Suite 800
Bethesda, MD 20892-4872
Telephone: (301) 594-5128
Email: glen_nuckolls@nih.gov

2. Peer Review Contacts:

Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
Room 3201, MSC 9529
6001 Executive Boulevard
Bethesda, MD 20892-9529
(Rockville, MD 20852 for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 496-9223
Fax: (301) 402-0182
E-mail: nindsreview.nih.gov@mail.nih.gov

3. Financial or Grants Management Contacts:
 
Eddie Myrbeck
NINDS Grants Management Branch
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
6001 Executive Blvd., Suite 3290, MSC 9537
Bethesda, MD 20892-9537
Telephone: (301) 496-3938
FAX: (301) 451-5635
Email: myrbecke@ninds.nih.gov

Section VIII. Other Information

Required Federal Citations

Use of Animals in Research:
Recipients of PHS support for activities involving live, vertebrate animals must comply with PHS Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/references/PHSPolicyLabAnimals.pdf) as mandated by the Health Research Extension Act of 1985 (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/olaw/references/hrea1985.htm), and the USDA Animal Welfare Regulations (http://www.nal.usda.gov/awic/legislat/usdaleg1.htm) as applicable.

Human Subjects Protection:
Federal regulations (45CFR46) require that applications and proposals involving human subjects must be evaluated with reference to the risks to the subjects, the adequacy of protection against these risks, the potential benefits of the research to the subjects and others, and the importance of the knowledge gained or to be gained (http://www.hhs.gov/ohrp/humansubjects/guidance/45cfr46.htm).

Data and Safety Monitoring Plan:
Data and safety monitoring is required for all types of clinical trials, including physiologic toxicity and dose-finding studies (phase I); efficacy studies (Phase II); efficacy, effectiveness and comparative trials (Phase III). Monitoring should be commensurate with risk. The establishment of data and safety monitoring boards (DSMBs) is required for multi-site clinical trials involving interventions that entail potential risks to the participants (NIH Policy for Data and Safety Monitoring, NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/not98-084.html).

Sharing Research Data:
Investigators submitting an NIH application seeking $500,000 or more in direct costs in any single year are expected to include a plan for data sharing or state why this is not possible (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/data_sharing).

Investigators should seek guidance from their institutions, on issues related to institutional policies and local IRB rules, as well as local, State and Federal laws and regulations, including the Privacy Rule. Reviewers will consider the data sharing plan but will not factor the plan into the determination of the scientific merit or the priority score.

Access to Research Data through the Freedom of Information Act:
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-110 has been revised to provide access to research data through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) under some circumstances. Data that are (1) first produced in a project that is supported in whole or in part with Federal funds and (2) cited publicly and officially by a Federal agency in support of an action that has the force and effect of law (i.e., a regulation) may be accessed through FOIA. It is important for applicants to understand the basic scope of this amendment. NIH has provided guidance at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/a110/a110_guidance_dec1999.htm. Applicants may wish to place data collected under this funding opportunity in a public archive, which can provide protections for the data and manage the distribution for an indefinite period of time. If so, the application should include a description of the archiving plan in the study design and include information about this in the budget justification section of the application. In addition, applicants should think about how to structure informed consent statements and other human subjects procedures given the potential for wider use of data collected under this award.

Sharing of Model Organisms:
NIH is committed to support efforts that encourage sharing of important research resources including the sharing of model organisms for biomedical research (see http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/model_organism/index.htm). At the same time the NIH recognizes the rights of grantees and contractors to elect and retain title to subject inventions developed with Federal funding pursuant to the Bayh Dole Act (see the NIH Grants Policy Statement http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps_2003/index.htm). All investigators submitting an NIH application or contract proposal, beginning with the October 1, 2004 receipt date, are expected to include in the application/proposal a description of a specific plan for sharing and distributing unique model organism research resources generated using NIH funding or state why such sharing is restricted or not possible. This will permit other researchers to benefit from the resources developed with public funding. The inclusion of a model organism sharing plan is not subject to a cost threshold in any year and is expected to be included in all applications where the development of model organisms is anticipated.

Inclusion of Women And Minorities in Clinical Research:
It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups and their sub-populations must be included in all NIH-supported clinical research projects unless a clear and compelling justification is provided indicating that inclusion is inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the research. This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (Section 492B of Public Law 103-43). All investigators proposing clinical research should read the "NIH Guidelines for Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-02-001.html); a complete copy of the updated Guidelines is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/women_min/guidelines_amended_10_2001.htm. The amended policy incorporates: the use of an NIH definition of clinical research; updated racial and ethnic categories in compliance with the new OMB standards; clarification of language governing NIH-defined Phase III clinical trials consistent with the new PHS Form 398; and updated roles and responsibilities of NIH staff and the extramural community. The policy continues to require for all NIH-defined Phase III clinical trials that: a) all applications or proposals and/or protocols must provide a description of plans to conduct analyses, as appropriate, to address differences by sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic groups, including subgroups if applicable; and b) investigators must report annual accrual and progress in conducting analyses, as appropriate, by sex/gender and/or racial/ethnic group differences.

Inclusion of Children as Participants in Clinical Research:
The NIH maintains a policy that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 21) must be included in all clinical research, conducted or supported by the NIH, unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them.

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the "NIH Policy and Guidelines" on the inclusion of children as participants in research involving human subjects (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/children/children.htm).

Required Education on the Protection of Human Subject Participants:
NIH policy requires education on the protection of human subject participants for all investigators submitting NIH applications for research involving human subjects and individuals designated as key personnel. The policy is available at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-00-039.html.

Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESC):
Criteria for federal funding of research on hESCs can be found at http://stemcells.nih.gov/index.asp and at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-02-005.html. Only research using hESC lines that are registered in the NIH Human Embryonic Stem Cell Registry will be eligible for Federal funding (http://escr.nih.gov). It is the responsibility of the applicant to provide in the project description and elsewhere in the application as appropriate, the official NIH identifier(s) for the hESC line(s)to be used in the proposed research. Applications that do not provide this information will be returned without review.

NIH Public Access Policy:
NIH-funded investigators are requested to submit to the NIH manuscript submission (NIHMS) system (http://www.nihms.nih.gov) at PubMed Central (PMC) an electronic version of the author's final manuscript upon acceptance for publication, resulting from research supported in whole or in part with direct costs from NIH. The author's final manuscript is defined as the final version accepted for journal publication, and includes all modifications from the publishing peer review process.

NIH is requesting that authors submit manuscripts resulting from 1) currently funded NIH research projects or 2) previously supported NIH research projects if they are accepted for publication on or after May 2, 2005. The NIH Public Access Policy applies to all research grant and career development award mechanisms, cooperative agreements, contracts, Institutional and Individual Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards, as well as NIH intramural research studies. The Policy applies to peer-reviewed, original research publications that have been supported in whole or in part with direct costs from NIH, but it does not apply to book chapters, editorials, reviews, or conference proceedings. Publications resulting from non-NIH-supported research projects should not be submitted.

For more information about the Policy or the submission process please visit the NIH Public Access Policy Web site at http://www.nih.gov/about/publicaccess/ and view the Policy or other Resources and Tools including the Authors' Manual (http://www.nih.gov/about/publicaccess/publicaccess_Manual.htm).

Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information:
The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) issued final modification to the "Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information", the "Privacy Rule", on August 14, 2002 . The Privacy Rule is a federal regulation under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 that governs the protection of individually identifiable health information, and is administered and enforced by the DHHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

Decisions about applicability and implementation of the Privacy Rule reside with the researcher and his/her institution. The OCR website (http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/) provides information on the Privacy Rule, including a complete Regulation Text and a set of decision tools on "Am I a covered entity?" Information on the impact of the HIPAA Privacy Rule on NIH processes involving the review, funding, and progress monitoring of grants, cooperative agreements, and research contracts can be found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-03-025.html.

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. Furthermore, we caution reviewers that their anonymity may be compromised 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 is related to one or more of the priority areas. Potential applicants may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2010" at http://www.health.gov/healthypeople.

Authority and Regulations:
This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance at http://www.cfda.gov/ and is not subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health Systems Agency review. Awards are made under the authorization of Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as amended (42 USC 241 and 284) and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement. The NIH Grants Policy Statement can be found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/policy.htm.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant recipients to provide a smoke-free workplace and discourage the 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, any 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.

Loan Repayment Programs:
NIH encourages applications for educational loan repayment from qualified health professionals who have made a commitment to pursue a research career involving clinical, pediatric, contraception, infertility, and health disparities related areas. The LRP is an important component of NIH's efforts to recruit and retain the next generation of researchers by providing the means for developing a research career unfettered by the burden of student loan debt. Note that an NIH grant is not required for eligibility and concurrent career award and LRP applications are encouraged. The periods of career award and LRP award may overlap providing the LRP recipient with the required commitment of time and effort, as LRP awardees must commit at least 50% of their time (at least 20 hours per week based on a 40 hour week) for two years to the research. For further information, please see: http://www.lrp.nih.gov.


Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices


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