National Institutes of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Funding Opportunity Title
Support of Competitive Research (SCORE) Pilot Project Award (SC2)
SC2 Research-Enhancement Award
Reissue of PAR-08-027
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number
Companion Funding Opportunity
Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s)
93.847, 93.859, 93.121, 93.855, 93.856
Funding Opportunity Purpose
The SCORE Program is a developmental program designed to increase the research competitiveness of faculty at minority-serving institutions and institutions with a historical mission of training students from backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical research. These institutions train a substantial number of professionals who pursue research careers or provide health care and health related services to populations who are underserved and not well represented in NIH funded research. SCORE offers three funding opportunities for individual investigator-initiated research awards according to their developmental level: Research Advancement Award (SC1), Pilot Project Award (SC2) and Research Continuance Award (SC3).
The SC2 award allows investigators, in their earlier stages of development, to test a new idea or gather preliminary data to establish a new line of research. It is a mentored award and applicants must be able to commit a minimum of 50 percent of full time-effort during the academic year and summer to conduct the proposed research. It is expected that investigators will continue to successfully compete for NIH or other research support as a result of the progress achieved with an SC2 award.
January 3, 2013
Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)
February 4, 2013
Letter of Intent Due Date(s)
Application Due Date(s)
March 4, 2013; May 25, 2013 and September 25, 2013, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization.
AIDS Application Due Date(s)
Standard AIDS dates apply, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization.
Scientific Merit Review
Standard dates apply
Advisory Council Review
Standard dates apply
Earliest Start Date
Standard dates apply
January 8, 2014
Due Dates for E.O. 12372
Required Application Instructions
It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed to do otherwise (in this FOA or in a Notice from the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts). Conformance to all requirements (both in the Application Guide and the FOA) is required and strictly enforced. Applicants must read and follow all application instructions in the Application Guide as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions. Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.
Part 1. Overview Information
Part 2. Full Text of the Announcement
Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
Section II. Award Information
Section III. Eligibility Information
Section IV. Application and Submission Information
Section V. Application Review Information
Section VI. Award Administration Information
Section VII. Agency Contacts
Section VIII. Other Information
The mission of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) is to support research that increases understanding of life processes and lays the foundation for advances in disease, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention. NIGMS funded researchers seek to answer important scientific questions in fields such as cell biology, biophysics, genetics, developmental biology, pharmacology, physiology, biological chemistry, biomedical technology, bioinformatics, computational biology, selected aspects of the behavioral sciences and specific cross-cutting clinical areas that affect multiple organs systems. To assure the vitality and continued productivity of the research enterprise, NIGMS also provides leadership in training the next generation of scientists and is particularly interested in developing and increasing the diversity of the scientific workforce by focusing on individuals from backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research. A recent report from an Advisory Committee to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director on Diversity of the Biomedical Research indicates that achieving diversity in the biomedical research workforce remains an important problem that must be actively addressed (see http://acd.od.nih.gov/dbr.htm).
The unique historical mission of some institutions of higher learning has been to educate students from underrepresented backgrounds, and to provide assistance to the underserved communities that the students come from. For example, the focus of minority-serving institutions (MSIs) has been the education and graduation of students from backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research, including underrepresented racial and ethnic groups (i.e., African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, and natives of U.S. Pacific Islands). Some other institutions have a mission to educate students with disabilities, and provide services to the disability community (J.V. Van Cleve and B. A. Crouch, A Place of their Own: Creating the Deaf Community in America, GU Press, 1989). As a group, these institutions have trained science graduates from underrepresented groups who have gone on to pursue research careers (NSF Women, Minorities and Person with Disabilities Report 2011) and have gained scientific prominence in their research. Some of these graduates provide health care to underserved populations and are, therefore, uniquely positioned to engage underserved populations in research and in the translation of research advances into culturally competent, measurable, and sustained improvements in health outcomes (Estape et al., Clin. Transl. Sci. 5(10): 112, 2011). NIH support of faculty-initiated research endeavors in these institutions has promoted increased student exposure to research in biomedical and behavioral sciences and an enhancement in the number of students from underrepresented groups who seek advanced degrees and provide much needed services to these communities.
The Minority Biomedical Research Support (MBRS) Program was created in 1972 under authority of sec. 301(c) of the PHS Act. It is comprised of Support of Competitive Research (SCORE) and two other initiatives [Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) and Initiative for Maximizing Student Development (IMSD)]. One of the goals of the MBRS Program is to increase the pool of students from underrepresented backgrounds engaged in biomedical and behavioral research, and to broaden the opportunities for underrepresented faculty and students to participate in biomedical and behavioral research.
The goal of the MBRS-SCORE program has evolved over the years, and the program now seeks to foster the development of faculty at institutions that have a historical mission focused on serving students from underrepresented backgrounds (i.e., minority-serving institutions, and/or institutions with historical missions to serve students with disabilities) in order to increase their research competitiveness and promote their transition to non-SCORE external sources of funding. This goal is expected to translate into an increase the pool of individuals from diverse backgrounds nationally underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research available to compete for NIH funding and professionally engaged in these areas of research. The SCORE program offers three distinct support mechanisms for individual investigator-initiated biomedical or behavioral research projects of different scope and for different program director/principal investigators (PD/PIs) developmental levels. It is expected that SCORE support will enable faculty at minority institutions to conduct high-quality research and to increase their research competitiveness by progressively enhancing the pace and productivity of their projects. This in turn will provide opportunities for underrepresented students, especially those that participate in MBRS-RISE programs, to experience research and will reinforce their motivation to pursue advance degrees.
The SCORE mechanisms available to investigators according to their experience/track records are:
Research Advancement Award (SC1), which is for investigators with a track record of research activity who are seeking to enhance their research productivity in order to transition to non-SCORE support in the near future. Pilot Project Award (SC2) is for those who are at the beginning stages of a research career and who are interested in testing a new idea, or generating preliminary data.
Research Continuance Award (SC3) is for those investigators who have been engaged in scholarly research and published, and who seek to continue to conduct competitive research of limited scope increase their publications and eventually transition to non-SCORE support.
The SC2 mechanism allows investigators, normally in their earlier stages of development, to test a new idea or gather preliminary data to establish a new line of research. Applicants must be able to commit a minimum of 50 percent of full time-effort, i.e., a total of 6 person months (typically 4.5 person-months during the academic year in a 9 month academic appointment and 1.5 person-months during the summer) to conduct the proposed research. The institution must provide assurances that the candidate will be able to devote the required effort developing his/her research project (a letter from the Chair of the PI's department or Dean is required, see Section IV below). Mentorship from productive, established scientist(s) in the proposed field of research is required and the mentor's role must be explained in the application. The mentor should be recognized as an accomplished investigator in the proposed research area and have a track record of success in training research scientists and of independent research support. Additionally, any investigator applying for the SC2 mechanism must demonstrate that accomplishing the objectives of the pilot project is a first step in a long-term plan aimed at becoming established in a given biomedical/behavioral area covered by the NIH mission and securing other external funding. PIs who successfully complete a pilot project may apply for an SC1 or SC3 or other (non-SCORE) funding opportunity depending on their developmental goals. Pilot project support may be requested for one to three years maximum and is not renewable.
The principal difference between a SC2 pilot project and an SC1 or SC3 award is that the pilot allows an individual to study and develop a new idea for which he/she has no preliminary data. Any individual planning to submit a pilot research project is advised to assess the field of study, evaluate his/her credentials and expertise, determine the resources necessary to conduct the project, and work on a clear hypothesis before initiating the writing of a proposal. He/she is also encouraged to consult the instructions in forms SF424 (R&R) and PHS 398, which provide general guidance on how to prepare an NIH investigator-initiated application.
Apart from having a mentor, SC2 PD/PIs are encouraged to establish meaningful collaborations with R01-funded investigators in the U.S., particularly outside of the applicant's institution, that will increase the progress and productivity of the project. These collaborators or consultants must be recognized experts in a field and must have their own research support, i.e., SC2 funds may not be used to fund a consultant's or collaborator's research project. Collaborators, who may be from the applicant institution or another institution, generally provide expertise in a specific aspect of the proposed project in which the PD/PI has little or no experience. Collaborators from other institutions cannot receive any support from an SCORE award. Consultants from institutions other than the applicant institution are individuals who have committed to contributing intellectually to the scientific project development or execution but are not committing any specified measurable effort (in person months) to the project. The specific aspect of the project that requires the expertise of a consultant or collaborator must be clearly described in the application as well as the role of the consultants/collaborators in the PIs research development (see special instructions below). Applications must clearly define and describe the distinct role that mentors, collaborators, and consultants will have in the development of both the proposed research project and the investigator. Since SC2 is a developmental award multiple PD/PIs, co-PIs or co-Investigators are not allowed.
SCORE investigator-initiated research projects are limited to the NIH mission. SCORE PD/PIs are strongly encouraged to use the Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools (RePORT) at http://report.nih.gov/index.aspx, to search for all past and currently funded NIH grants and their descriptions. Upon receipt, SC2 grant applications are assigned to NIGMS for initial review. In the event of an award, the programmatic management of the SC2 will be transferred to NIGMS or another participating NIH Institute or Center (IC) based on the scientific content of the award and according to established NIH referral guidelines.
Each participating IC maintains a Web site with funding opportunities and areas of interest. Contact with an IC representative may help focus the research plan based on an understanding of the mission of the IC. For specific information about the mission of each NIH IC, see http://www.nih.gov/icd, which provides a brief summary of the research interests in each IC and access to individual IC home pages. Applicants are strongly advised to review the SCORE Answers to Frequently Asked Questions section in the NIGMS website, http://www.nigms.nih.gov/Training/MBRS/SCOREUpdateFAQ.htm before they consider applying for any SCORE individual award. Submitted applications that are found not to fall within the NIH mission will be withdrawn prior to review.
Grant: A support mechanism providing money, property, or both to an eligible entity to carry out an approved project or activity.
Application Types Allowed
The OER Glossary and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types.
Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards
The number of awards is contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.
Application budgets may not exceed $100,000 direct costs/year for a maximum of three years and must reflect actual needs of the proposed project.
Award Project Period
The scope of the proposed project should determine the project period. The maximum period of support is 3 years.
NIH grants policies as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement will apply to the applications submitted and awards made in response to this FOA.
This funding opportunity announcement is open to all institutions of higher learning with a historical mission of educating students from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research as defined by the National Science Foundation (NSF, see http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/wmpd/) (i.e., African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, U.S. Pacific Islanders, and persons with disabilities). Applicant institutions must be located in the United States of America or its territories including Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, the Canal Zone, Guam, America Samoa, or the successor States of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau. In addition, these institutions must:
1. award science degrees to undergraduate (B.S. or B.A.) and/or graduate students (M.S. or Ph.D.)
2. have received less than six million dollars from NIH R01 support in the last two fiscal years.
Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are
not eligible to apply.
Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are not eligible to apply.
Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are not allowed.
Applicant organizations must complete the following registrations as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide to be eligible to apply for or receive an award. Applicants must have a valid Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number in order to begin each of the following registrations.
All Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD(s)/PI(s))
must also work with their institutional officials to register with the eRA
Commons or ensure their existing eRA Commons account is affiliated with the eRA
Commons account of the applicant organization.
All registrations must be completed by the application due date. Applicant organizations are strongly encouraged to start the registration process at least 6 weeks prior to the application due date.
Any individual(s) with the skills, knowledge, and resources
necessary to carry out the proposed research as the Program Director(s)/Principal
Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) is invited to work with his/her organization 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 support.
For institutions/organizations proposing multiple PDs/PIs, visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
An SC1 PD/PI must also have a full-time regular faculty appointment at the applicant institution and be eligible to apply for a NIH R01 research grant. Postdoctoral fellows, research instructors, research assistant professors, research scientists, other research appointments or appointments contingent on an individual securing his/her salary from grants, and part-time or adjunct faculty are not eligible to apply for SCORE individual awards. Emeritus/retired investigators/professors as well as individuals with a track record of R01 or equivalent research grant awards are considered to be fully developed and may not apply for this award. Investigators who have developmental award support are ineligible to apply for SCORE individual awards, i.e., SCORE awards are not intended to duplicate other individual or institutional developmental awards; these include K awards and awards given as part of institutional centers or program projects. An applicant may not be the PI of any other SCORE or any other investigator initiated research grant at the time an SC2 award is made. Concurrent or duplicate application to any of the SCORE mechanisms (SC1, SC2, or SC3) by a single PD/PI is not allowed. A PD/PI may only apply for/receive one SC award at a time.
PD/PIs who have received one cycle of R01 or R21 support during their professorial career may apply for an SC1 award but would receive support for only SC1 grant cycle, i.e., no renewal is allowed. Current PD/PIs of R01, R21, or of other equivalent investigator initiated research awards are ineligible to apply for any of the SCORE mechanisms. Multiple PD/PI applications are not allowed. SC2 awards may not be transferred from one PD/PI to another. If an SC2 PD/PI moves to another SCORE eligible institution, his/her award may be transferred to the new institution provided that all transfer requirements as per NIH and SCORE policy are fulfilled.
This FOA does not require cost sharing as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
Applicant organizations may submit more than one application, provided that each application is scientifically distinct.
NIH will not accept any application that is essentially the same as one already reviewed within the past thirty-seven months (as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement), except for submission:
Institutions may submit individual SC1, SC2 or SC3 applications to a combined maximum of 20 total of applications and awards at any time. The maximum number of individual SCORE awards (combination of SC1, SC2, SC3) that a single institution may hold is 20.
Applicants must download the SF424 (R&R) application package associated with this funding opportunity using the “Apply for Grant Electronically” button in this FOA or following the directions provided at Grants.gov.
It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed in this funding opportunity announcement to do otherwise. Conformance to the requirements in the Application Guide is required and strictly enforced. Applications that are out of compliance with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.
For information on Application Submission and Receipt, visit Frequently Asked Questions – Application Guide, Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.
The forms package associated with this FOA includes all applicable components, mandatory and optional. Please note that some components marked optional in the application package are required for submission of applications for this FOA. Follow all instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide to ensure you complete all appropriate “optional” components.
All page limitations described in the SF424 Application Guide and the Table of Page Limits must be followed.
List all costs for collaborators and consultants. Collaborators from the applicant institution may be paid for the limited time, not to exceed a total of 2 person months, devoted to a specific area of the project. Consultants may be paid a reasonable honorarium commensurate with their limited involvement in a project.
Prepare a single attachment titled "institutional information" and upload it via the Other Attachments section. The attachment should include:
1) Background information and evidence of the institution's historical mission to educate students from backgrounds nationally underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research, and efforts to provide services to the underserved community.
2) Total NIH R01 support in the last fiscal year (this information may be retrieved from NIH RePORTER at http://projectreporter.nih.gov/reporter.cfm).
3) Institutional data on:
a. Demographics of student body in the sciences, i.e., total and undergraduate (BS/BA) and graduate (MS/PhD) science student enrollment and graduation numbers and percentages of the different groups nationally underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research.
b. Number of underrepresented students graduating from the applicant institution who have go on and completed the Ph.D. in biomedical and behavioral in the past ten years (this information may be retrieved from NSF WebCaspar at https://webcaspar.nsf.gov/).
4) An institutional letter certifying that the time and effort requested by the PI will be provided. This letter must explain also the institution's commitment to the PD/PI's proposed research development.
In the PD/PI's biographical sketch his/her developmental objectives and plan should be included under a separate subheading of his/her Personal Statement. These objectives and plan must present how the PD/PI's SC2 and research career goals will be achieved as a logical progression from the candidate's past training and experience and how SC2 support will allow the PD/PI to transition to other external support. The plan must justify the PD/PI's need for development via the SC2 mechanism and provide an explanation of how the proposed project, the time devoted to it (50% effort or 6 person months), and the participation of the mentor(s), collaborators/consultants will help the PD/PI further his/her research competitiveness and significantly improve his/her productivity to allow him/her to compete for other external support. The developmental plan must also provide a timeline for publications and the transition to other external support. Additionally, a PD/PI must provide information on past/current student involvement from underrepresented groups (especially RISE students, if applicable) in their research projects.
A Biographical Sketch for each mentor is required as part of key personnel and it should include a description of the role of the mentor and mentoring plan within the page limits of the mentor’s personal statement. This should provide: (1) information on his/her research qualifications and previous experience as a research supervisor/mentor; (2) a mentoring plan that describes the nature of the supervision and mentoring that will occur during the proposed award period; and (3) a plan for monitoring the applicant’s research, publications, and transition to the next step in his/her research career. Please note that a letter from the mentor(s) is no longer required.
Include an entry for each collaborator and consultant. Collaborators, who may be from the applicant institution or another institution, generally provide expertise in a very specific aspect of the execution of the proposed project in which the PD/PI has little or no experience. Consultants from institutions other than the applicant institution are individuals who have committed to contributing intellectually to the scientific project development or execution but are not committing any specified measurable effort (in person months) to the project or conducting any part of the project. The role of a consultant/collaborator in a project must be described clearly and fully justified in personal statement of their biosketch.
All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed, with the following additional instructions:
PD/PIs who have received previous S06 or SC support must include a progress report as part of the research strategy even if the proposed project is scientifically different or they have had a gap in funding.
Resource Sharing Plan
Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for the Resource Sharing Plans (Data Sharing Plan, Sharing Model Organisms, and Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS)) as provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
Do not use the Appendix to circumvent page limits. Follow all instructions for the Appendix as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
Part I. Overview Information contains information about Key Dates. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications before the deadline to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission.
Organizations must submit applications via Grants.gov, the online portal to find and apply for grants across all Federal agencies. Applicants must then complete the submission process by tracking the status of the application in the eRA Commons, NIH’s electronic system for grants administration.
Applicants are responsible for viewing their application before the deadline in the eRA Commons to ensure accurate and successful submission.
Information on the submission process and a definition of on-time submission are provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.
All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
Pre-award costs are allowable only as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
SCORE SC2 awards include some restrictions as to how the funds may be used. The following account summarizes some of the allowable and non-allowable costs under the SCORE SC2 mechanism.
Applications must be submitted electronically following the instructions described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide. Paper applications will not be accepted.
Applicants must complete all required registrations before the application due date. Section III. Eligibility Information contains information about registration.
For assistance with your electronic application or for more information on the electronic submission process, visit Applying Electronically.
All PD(s)/PI(s) must include their eRA Commons ID in the Credential field of the Senior/Key Person Profile Component of the SF424(R&R) Application Package. Failure to register in the Commons and to include a valid PD/PI Commons ID in the credential field will prevent the successful submission of an electronic application to NIH.
The applicant organization must ensure that the DUNS number it provides on the application is the same number used in the organization’s profile in the eRA Commons and for the System for Award Management (SAM). Additional information may be found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
See more tips for avoiding common errors.
Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness by the Center for Scientific Review, NIH. Applications that are incomplete will not be reviewed.
Applicants are required to follow the instructions for post-submission materials, as described in NOT-OD-10-115.
Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process. As part of the NIH mission, all applications submitted to the NIH in support of biomedical and behavioral research are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.
Reviewers will provide an overall impact score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved, in consideration of the following review criteria and additional review criteria (as applicable for the project proposed).
Reviewers will consider each of the review criteria below in the determination of scientific merit, and give a separate score for each. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact. For example, a project that by its nature is not innovative may be essential to advance a field.
Does the project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress in the field? If the aims of the project are achieved, how will scientific knowledge, technical capability, and/or clinical practice be improved? How will successful completion of the aims change the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field? How will successful completion of the project aims and PD/PI's developmental goals facilitate the PD/PI's transition to non-SCORE support?
Are the PD(s)/PI(s), collaborators, and other researchers well suited to the project? If Early Stage Investigators or New Investigators, or in the early stages of independent careers, do they have appropriate experience and training? If established, have they demonstrated an ongoing record of accomplishments that have advanced their field(s)? If the project is collaborative or multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise; are their leadership approach, governance and organizational structure appropriate for the project? Do the investigator's credentials and experience engender confidence that he/she is well poised to succeed in establishing the research line proposed and securing subsequent funding? Do the mentor's credentials and role on the project provide convincing evidence that the mentoring relationship will foster the applicant's research and professional development? Are the PD/PI's developmental objectives reasonable and what is the likelihood that they will be accomplished and that he/she will increase his/her research competitiveness?
Does the application challenge and seek to shift current research or clinical practice paradigms by utilizing novel theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions? Are the concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions novel to one field of research or novel in a broad sense? Is a refinement, improvement, or new application of theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions proposed?
Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses
well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project?
Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success
presented? If the project is in the early stages of development, will the
strategy establish feasibility and will particularly risky aspects be
If the project involves clinical research, are the plans for 1) protection of human subjects from research risks, and 2) inclusion of minorities and members of both sexes/genders, as well as the inclusion of children, justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed?
Will the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the project proposed? Will the project benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, subject populations, or collaborative arrangements? How committed is the institution to the PD/PI's research development during and beyond SCORE support? To what extent does the institution's historical mission and background information render confidence that there is a pool of students from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral areas of research who may benefit from participation in SCORE-supported research?
As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will evaluate the following additional items while determining scientific and technical merit, and in providing an overall impact score, but will not give separate scores for these items.
Protections for Human Subjects
For research that involves human subjects but does
not involve one of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR
Part 46, the committee will evaluate the justification for involvement of human
subjects and the proposed protections from research risk relating to their
participation according to the following five review criteria: 1) risk to
subjects, 2) adequacy of protection against risks, 3) potential benefits to the
subjects and others, 4) importance of the knowledge to be gained, and 5) data
and safety monitoring for clinical trials.
For research that involves human subjects and meets the criteria for one or more of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR Part 46, the committee will evaluate: 1) the justification for the exemption, 2) human subjects involvement and characteristics, and 3) sources of materials. For additional information on review of the Human Subjects section, please refer to the Human Subjects Protection and Inclusion Guidelines.
Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children
When the proposed project involves clinical research, the committee will evaluate the proposed plans for inclusion of minorities and members of both genders, as well as the inclusion of children. For additional information on review of the Inclusion section, please refer to the Human Subjects Protection and Inclusion Guidelines.
The committee will evaluate the involvement of live vertebrate animals as part of the scientific assessment according to the following five points: 1) proposed use of the animals, and species, strains, ages, sex, and numbers to be used; 2) justifications for the use of animals and for the appropriateness of the species and numbers proposed; 3) adequacy of veterinary care; 4) procedures for limiting discomfort, distress, pain and injury to that which is unavoidable in the conduct of scientifically sound research including the use of analgesic, anesthetic, and tranquilizing drugs and/or comfortable restraining devices; and 5) methods of euthanasia and reason for selection if not consistent with the AVMA Guidelines on Euthanasia. For additional information on review of the Vertebrate Animals section, please refer to the Worksheet for Review of the Vertebrate Animal Section.
Reviewers will assess whether materials or procedures proposed are potentially hazardous to research personnel and/or the environment, and if needed, determine whether adequate protection is proposed.
For Resubmissions, the committee will evaluate the application as now presented, taking into consideration the responses to comments from the previous scientific review group and changes made to the project.
For Renewals, the committee will consider the progress made in the last funding period.
As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will consider each of the following items, but will not give scores for these items, and should not consider them in providing an overall impact score.
Applications from Foreign Organizations
Select Agent Research
Reviewers will assess the information provided in this section of the application, including 1) the Select Agent(s) to be used in the proposed research, 2) the registration status of all entities where Select Agent(s) will be used, 3) the procedures that will be used to monitor possession use and transfer of Select Agent(s), and 4) plans for appropriate biosafety, biocontainment, and security of the Select Agent(s).
Resource Sharing Plans
Reviewers will comment on whether the following Resource Sharing Plans, or the rationale for not sharing the following types of resources, are reasonable: 1) Data Sharing Plan; 2) Sharing Model Organisms; and 3) Genome Wide Association Studies (GWAS).
Budget and Period of Support
Reviewers will consider whether the budget and the requested period of support are fully justified and reasonable in relation to the proposed research.
Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by (an) appropriate Scientific Review Group(s), in accordance with NIH peer review policy and procedures, using the stated review criteria. Assignment to a Scientific Review Group will be shown in the eRA Commons.
As part of the scientific peer review, all applications:
Applications will be assigned on the basis of established PHS referral guidelines to the appropriate NIH Institute or Center. Applications will compete for available funds with all other recommended applications . Following initial peer review, recommended applications will receive a second level of review by the NIGMS Advisory Council. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:
After the peer review of the application is completed, the PD/PI will be able to access his or her Summary Statement (written critique) via the eRA Commons.
Information regarding the disposition of applications is available in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH
will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant as
described in the NIH Grants
A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization for successful applications. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document and will be sent via email to the grantee’s business official.
Awardees must comply with any funding restrictions described in Section IV.5. Funding Restrictions. 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.
Any application awarded in response to this FOA will be subject to the DUNS, SAM Registration, and Transparency Act requirements as noted on the Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants website.
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 and Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities. More information is provided at Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants.
Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award
When multiple years are involved, awardees will be required to submit the annual Non-Competing Progress Report (PHS 2590 or RPPR) and financial statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
A final progress report, invention statement, and the expenditure data portion of the Federal Financial Report are required for closeout of an award, as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (Transparency Act), includes a requirement for awardees of Federal grants to report information about first-tier subawards and executive compensation under Federal assistance awards issued in FY2011 or later. All awardees of applicable NIH grants and cooperative agreements are required to report to the Federal Subaward Reporting System (FSRS) available at www.fsrs.gov on all subawards over $25,000. See the NIH Grants Policy Statement for additional information on this reporting requirement.
In carrying out its stewardship of research development awards, the NIH may request information essential to an assessment of the effectiveness of this program from databases and from participants themselves. Participants may be contacted after the completion of their SC2 awards for information other than that available in databases that could be helpful in evaluating the impact of the program in their research career.
After ten years of making awards under this program, NIH will assess the program’s overall outcomes, gauge its effectiveness in developing the PIs research competitiveness and in transitioning to non-SCORE support. Upon completion of this evaluation NIH will determine the program’s continuing need and whether to (a) continue the program as currently configured, (b) continue the program with modifications, or (c) discontinue the program.
Listed below are key metrics to be used to help determine whether the program goals or outcomes have been met in a future evaluation:
1) Number of PIs who have successfully transitioned to non-SCORE support.
2) Types of NIH awards secured by the PIs who successfully transition to non-SCORE support.
3) Number of scientific publications resulting from SCORE support.
4) Number of students from underrepresented groups engaged in research conducted by SCORE PD/PIs.
We encourage inquiries concerning this funding opportunity
and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants.
GrantsInfo (Questions regarding application instructions and
process, finding NIH grant resources)
eRA Commons Help Desk (Questions regarding eRA Commons
registration, tracking application status, post submission issues)
Phone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)
Hinda Zlotnik, Ph.D.
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Lynn Mertens King, Ph.D.
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
Phone: (301) 594-5006
Helen R. Sunshine, Ph.D.
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
Phone: (301) 594-4798
Recently issued trans-NIH policy notices may affect your application submission. A full list of policy notices published by NIH is provided in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.
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 Part 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92.
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