Full Text PAR-97-035
 
PILOT GRANTS IN BEHAVIORAL AND SOCIAL SCIENCE OF AGING
 
NIH GUIDE, Volume 26, Number 4, February 7, 1997
 
PA NUMBER:  PAR-97-035
 
P.T. 34

Keywords: 
  Aging/Gerontology 
  Behavioral/Social Studies/Service 

 
National Institute on Aging
 
Application Receipt Dates:  March 17, 1997, July 17, 1997 November
17, 1997
 
PURPOSE
 
The Behavioral and Social Research Program (BSR) of the National
Institute on Aging (NIA) is seeking small grant (R03) applications to
stimulate and facilitate research in underdeveloped topics in the
behavioral and social sciences of aging.  This Small Grant (R03)
Program provides support for pilot research that is likely to lead to
a subsequent individual research project grant (R01) or a First
Independent Research Support  and Transition (FIRST) (R29) award
application and/or a significant advancement of aging research. These
R03 projects include, but are not limited to, research which is
innovative and/or high risk.
 
HEALTHY PEOPLE 2000
 
The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health
promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000,"
a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas.  This Program
Announcement, "Pilot grants (R03) in behavioral and social science of
aging," is related to is related to several priority areas applicable
to aging.  Potential applicants may obtain a copy of "Healthy People
2000" (Full Report:  Stock No. 017-001-00474-0) or "Healthy People
2000" (Summary Report:  Stock No. 017-001-00473-1) through the
Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington,
DC 20402-9325 (telephone 202-783-3238).
 
ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
 
Applications may be submitted by domestic for-profit and non-profit
organizations, public and private, such as universities, colleges,
hospitals, laboratories, units of State and local governments, and
eligible agencies of the Federal government.  Racial/ethnic minority
individuals, women, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to
apply as principal investigators.  Foreign organizations and
institutions are not eligible.  Participation in the program by
investigators at minority institutions is strongly encouraged.
 
To be eligible for this award, the proposed Principal Investigator
must, at a minimum, be an independent investigator at the beginning
of her/his research career as defined by the eligibility requirements
for a FIRST (R29) award. That is, they should be genuinely
independent of a mentor.  Individuals in the final stages of training
may apply, but individuals can not be in a training status at the
time the award is made.  Established investigators proposing research
unrelated to a currently funded research program are also eligible to
apply for these grants.
 
MECHANISM OF SUPPORT
 
Applicants may request up to $50,000 (direct costs) for one year
through the small grant (R03) mechanism.  However, the grants will be
awarded under Expanded Authorities and are eligible for a single
one-year no cost extension.  These awards are not renewable.  Before
completion of the R03, investigators are encouraged to seek
continuing support for research through a research project grant
(R01) or FIRST (R29) award.
 
Replacement of the Principal Investigator on this award is not
permitted.
 
RESEARCH OBJECTIVES
 
The Small Grant program is designed to support new, junior, and
established behavioral and social science researchers interested in
conducting research on underdeveloped topics in the behavioral and
social sciences of aging.  Collection of new data or secondary
analysis of existing data are allowed.  Topics of interest are
limited to the eight topics described below:
 
Social Cognition in Adulthood and Old Age
 
Social Cognition is the intersection between cognitive and social
gerontology.  Research on cognitive aging suggests that social
reasoning and social comprehension are largely spared from
deleterious aging processes.  In fact, there is a small but growing
body of evidence that points to the potential for developmental gains
in cognitive performance when embedded in social contexts.  Topic
areas include, but are not limited to: metacognition, collaborative
cognition, emotion and motivation, interpersonal relationships, life
transitions, self regulation, self evaluation, and attitudes and
beliefs including stereotypes and automaticity.
 
Personality in Adulthood and Old Age
 
Considerable data suggest that personality is stable during
adulthood, although other data suggest that personality changes
across the life span.  Results vary as a function of sample, when
personality is measured and the particular constructs measured. Topic
areas include, but are not limited to: studies of stability and
change in personality with age; age-related differences in
personality by socioeconomic class, gender, and racial/ethnic groups.
 
Behavior Genetics and Aging
 
Molecular genetics research has begun to identify specific genes
associated with behavior.  This domain includes both single-gene
traits and complex traits influenced by multiple genes as well as
multiple environmental factors.  Most geneticists agree that complex
behaviors are not likely to be genetically simple.  One research
approach is the one-gene one-disorder or OGOD method in which many
complex behaviors or disorders are assumed to result from many
smaller behaviors, each the result of a different single gene which
is a necessary and sufficient cause.  Another approach is the
quantitative trait loci or QTL method which assumes that genetic
influence on complex behaviors and disorders is largely due to
multiple genes with effects of varying sizes which contribute
cumulatively and interchangeably.  These new techniques can track the
developmental course of genetic contributions to behavior, identify
genetic heterogeneity, and explore genetic links between the normal
and abnormal.  Properly designed studies can also identify the
importance of nongenetic factors.  Some areas of opportunities for
behavior genetics and aging research in both humans and animals
include attention, processing speed, memory, intelligence, training,
emotionality, sense of control, motivation, attention, and temporal
organization.
 
Direct inquiries on the topics of Social Cognition, Personality, and
Behavior Genetics to:
 
Jared B. Jobe, Ph.D.
Adult Psychological Development
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building, Room 533
Bethesda, MD 20892-9205
Telephone:  (301) 496-3137
FAX:  (301) 402-0051
Email:  Jared_Jobe@NIH.GOV
 
Interventions to Enhance Self Care in Older People
 
Although the linkage between health behaviors and lifestyles to a
wide range of health outcomes is now well documented, less is known
about the development, maintenance, and modification of such
behaviors over the life course. While calling for small scale
research on the wide range of self care behaviors, this solicitation
gives special encouragement to medical self-care--or how older people
recognize and act upon new illness symptoms and/or manage everyday
chronic conditions. Two types of research are solicited: 1) basic
research exploring the patterns, dynamics and processes of self care
behaviors practiced by older adults, and 2) the design,
implementation, and evaluation of theoretically based self-care
interventions to encourage the adoption of new health behaviors or to
modify health impairing habits and lifestyles.
 
Religiousness in Health and Aging
 
Religiousness, whether defined as spiritual beliefs or organizational
affiliation, is consistently associated with better well-being and
increased longevity for elders.  Research projects are invited that
encourage a better understanding of the complex interrelationships
among religious variables (beliefs or behaviors), other psychosocial
mediating factors (e.g., health beliefs or coping styles), and health
and functioning throughout the life course. Several specific research
topics were identified in a 1995 NIA/Fetzer Conference on
Methodological Advances in Religion, Health and Aging. Two are of
special interest: 1) the biopsychosocial mechanisms by which
religion, spirituality and/or religious affiliations may affect
health and 2) the development of rigorous, but parsimonious scales
and indices that can be embedded in more general studies of health
and aging.
 
AIDS in an Aging Society
 
The behavioral and social implications of AIDS for the middle-aged
and older population have been largely ignored.  This is despite the
fact that people fifty and older have constituted approximately ten
percent of the reported AIDS cases since the beginning of the
epidemic, and that AIDS has become a major public health problem
affecting people of all ages.  Research is recommended on a variety
of topics, including, but not limited to: 1) the social epidemiology
of older people at risk, including transmission routes for those 50
and older; 2) factors affecting quality of life for older persons
with HIV/AIDS and their families; 3) interventions to change older
people's AIDS-related knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors; 4)
behavioral and social strategies for helping older people enhance
their AIDS-related caregiving capacities (e.g., care for adult
children or grandchildren); and 5) interrelationships between
HIV/AIDS and changing health care structures.
 
Direct inquiries on the topics of Interventions to Enhance Self Care
in Older People, Religiousness in Health and Aging, and AIDS in an
Aging Society to:
 
Marcia G. Ory, Ph.D.
Social Science Research on Aging
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building, Room 533
Bethesda, MD  20892-9205
Telephone:  (301) 402-4156
FAX:  (301) 402-0051
Email:  Marcia_Ory@NIH.GOV
 
Social and Structural Factors in Health Care
 
The basic thrust of this initiative is to understand the complex
interactions between changing health care systems and the needs of
aging persons in an aging society.  The fluid organization  and
financing of health care, coupled with the health care needs of the
growing U.S. older population will alter many features of  health
care delivery both for providers and for patients.  Research topics
in this area include, but are not limited to: 1) impact of the type
of health care organization (e.g., structure, reimbursement
mechanism, organizational control, and professional control) on
clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction, and/or provider
satisfaction; 2) differences between "real" clinical outcomes and
"perceived" outcomes in the elderly based on organizational
characteristics; 3) health and social consequences of a change in the
usual source, quality and quantity of health care at the time of
Medicare enrollment; 4) effect of managed care's prevention model on
clinical and behavioral outcomes in an aging patient base; and 5) the
dynamic interplay between changing needs of aging persons and
changing health care delivery system characteristics.
 
Aging and Work Organizations
 
There has been much public attention to the aging of our society, and
the implications for health care and the economy. Less is known about
the characteristics of work organizations, how they are changing, and
the implications of these changes for the health of older workers who
continue working.  Possible topics to be explored for further
development  include: 1) the changing nature of the workplace and
workforce; 2) how aging workers are perceived and dealt with in the
workplace; 3) specification of characteristics of work/workplace that
facilitate or impede the productivity of older workers and the
ability of older workers to stay in the workforce (e.g., the aging of
work organizations; flexible work rules; phased retirement plans,
etc.); and 4) innovations in the workplace to accommodate older
workers or parents of workers (e.g., development of elder care
programs).
 
Direct inquiries on the topics of Social and Structural Factors in
Health Care, and Aging and Work Organizations to:
 
Sidney M. Stahl, Ph.D.
Health Care Organizations
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building, Room 533
Bethesda, MD  20892-9205
Telephone:  (301) 402-4156
FAX:  (301) 402-0051
Email:  Sidney_Stahl@NIH.GOV
 
INCLUSION OF WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN
SUBJECTS
 
It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups
and their subpopulations must be included in all NIH supported
biomedical and behavioral research projects involving human subjects,
unless a clear and compelling rationale and justification are
provided that inclusion is inappropriate with respect to the health
of the subjects of 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 research involving human subjects should
read the "NIH Guidelines for Inclusion of Women and Minorities as
Subjects in Clinical Research," which have been published in the
Federal Register of March 28, 1994 (FR 59 14508-14513) and the NIH
Guide for Grants and Contracts, Volume 23, Number 11, March 18, 1994.
 
APPLICATION PROCEDURES
 
The submission, review, and award schedule for the Small Grant
Program for 1997/1998 is:
 
Application Receipt Dates:   Mar 17     Jul 17     Nov 17
Institute Committee Review:  Jun 97     Oct 97     Mar 98
Earliest funding:            Sep97      Jan 98     May 98
 
Only one small grant application may be submitted by a principal
investigator per receipt date.  Applicants may not submit R01 or R29
applications on the same topic concurrent (to be considered at the
same review cycle) with the submission of a small grant application.
 
Applications are to be submitted on the grant application form PHS
398 (rev. 5/95) and prepared according to the directions in the
application packet, with the exceptions noted below.  Application
kits are available at most institutional offices of sponsored
research and may be obtained from the Grants Information Office,
Office of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources, National
Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD
20892-7910, telephone 301/435-0714, e-mail:
ASKNIH@odrockm1.od.nih.gov.
 
On the face page of the application: Item 2 Type "Pilot Grants (R03)
in Behavioral and Social Science of Aging."   Check the "YES" box.
Sections 1-4:  Do not exceed a total of ten pages for the following
sections: specific aims, background and significance, progress
report/preliminary studies, and experimental design and methods.
Tables and figures are included in the ten page limitation.
Applications that exceed the page limitation or PHS requirements for
type size and margins  (Refer to PHS 398 application  for details)
will be returned to the investigator.  The ten page limitation does
not include Sections 5-9 (Human Subjects, Consortia, Literature
cited). Appendix materials are not allowed.
 
"Just-in-time" (JIT) is an initiative of the National Institutes of
Health (NIH) Extramural Reinvention Laboratory under the auspices of
the National Performance Review and government-wide efforts to create
a government that works better and costs less.  JIT postpones the
collection of certain information that currently must be included in
all competing applications when submitted.  The information for the
applications with a likelihood of funding is submitted "just-in-time"
for awards to be made.  This program announcement is incorporating
JIT procedures as described below.  Some sections are modified and
others in the application do not need to be completed for the
submission of the application, but WILL be requested if your
application receives a priority score in the fundable range.
 
Form DD - Page 4 - DETAILED BUDGET PLAN FOR INITIAL BUDGET PERIOD
 
Do not complete this form on page 4 of the PHS 398 (rev. 5/95).  It
is not required nor will it be accepted at the time of the
application.
 
Form EE - Page 5 - BUDGET FOR THE ENTIRE PROPOSED PROJECT
 
Do not complete the categorical budget table form on page 5 in the
PHS 398 (rev. 5/95).  Only the requested total direct costs for each
year and total direct costs for the entire proposed period of support
should be shown.  Begin the budget justification in the space
provided, using continuation pages as needed.
 
Budget Justification
 
o  List the name, role on project, and percent effort for all project
personnel (salaried or unsalaried) and provide a narrative
justification for each person based on his/her role on the project
and proposed level of effort.
 
o  Identify all consultants by name and organizational affiliation
and describe the services to be performed.
 
o  Provide a narrative justification for any major budget items,
other than personnel, that are requested for the conduct of the
project that would be considered unusual for the scope of the
research.  No specific costs for items or categories should be shown.
 
o  Indirect costs will be calculated at the time of the award using
the institution's actual indirect cost rate.  Applicants will be
asked to identify the indirect cost exclusions prior to award.
 
o  If consortium/contractual costs are requested, provide the
percentage of the subcontract total costs (direct and indirect)
relative to the total direct costs of the overall project.  The
subcontract budget justification should be prepared following the
instructions provided above.
 
Biographical Sketch - A biographical sketch is required for all key
personnel, following the modified instructions below.  Do not exceed
the two-page limit for each person.
 
o  Complete the education block at the top of the form page;
 
o  List current position(s) and those previous positions directly
relevant to the application;
 
o  List selected peer-reviewed publications directly relevant to the
proposed project, with full citation;
 
o  Provide information on research projects completed and/or research
grants participated in during the last five years that are relevant
to the proposed project.  Title, principal investigator, funding
source, and role on project must be provided.
 
Other Support - Do not complete the other support page (format page 7
of the PHS 398 (rev. 5/95)).  Information on active support for key
personnel will be requested prior to award.
 
Checklist - Do not submit the checklist page.  For amended and
competing continuation applications, applicants must complete the
block in the upper right corner of the face page to indicate the
previous grant number.  A completed checklist will be required prior
to award.
 
Submit a signed, original of the application, including the
checklist, and three exact photocopies in one package to:
 
DIVISION OF RESEARCH GRANTS
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040 -MSC-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20892-7710
BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for courier/overnight service)
 
In addition, to expedite the review of the application, submit two
additional exact photocopies of the application directly to:
 
Chief, Scientific Review Office
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building Suite 2C212, MSC 9205
7201 Wisconsin Avenue
Bethesda, MD  20892-9205
 
In order not to delay review, it is important that applicants comply
with this request.
 
REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS
 
Small grant applications will be assigned on the basis of established
Public Health Service referral guidelines.  Applications will be
reviewed for scientific and technical merit by a review committee of
the National Institute on Aging, in accordance with the standard NIH
peer review procedures.  Applications will be evaluated with respect
to the following criteria:
 
o  Importance of the area to aging research
 
o  Feasibility of the proposed exploratory research
 
o  Likelihood of the proposed pilot project leading to the
development of an R01/R29 grant application, or significant
advancement of aging research.
 
o  Adequacy of approach and scientific originality and significance
 
o  Appropriateness of the proposed budget and timetable in relation
to the scope of the proposed research
 
o  Qualifications and research experience of the principal
investigator.
 
o  Availability of resources necessary for the research, including
any needed to supplement the budget.
 
o  The adequacy of the proposed means for protecting against or
minimizing potential adverse effects upon humans, animals, or the
environment.
 
o  Adequacy of adherence to guidelines for including gender and
minority representation in any study population.
 
FUNDS AVAILABLE
 
In fiscal year 1997, approximately $500,000 will be available to fund
7 - 10 small grants, contingent on high scientific merit and program
priority.
 
AWARD CRITERIA
 
Applications will compete for available funds with all other approved
applications.  The following will be considered in making funding
decisions:
 
o  quality of the proposed project as determined by peer review;
o  availability of funds;
o  program priority.
 
INQUIRIES
 
Inquiries are encouraged.  The opportunity to clarify any issues or
questions from potential applicants is welcome.
 
Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to the contacts listed
under Research Objectives.
 
Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:
 
Mr. David Reiter
Grants and Contracts Management Office
National Institute on Aging
Gateway Building, Suite 2N212
7201 Wisconsin Avenue MSC 9205
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-1472
FAX:  (301) 402-3672
David_Reiter@nih.gov
 
AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS
 
This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic
Assistance No. 93.866.  Awards are made under authorization of the
Public Health Service Act, Title IV, Part A (Public Law 78-410), as
amended by Public Law 99-158, 42 USC 241 and 285) and
administered under PHS grants policies and Federal Regulations 42
CFR 52 and 45 CFR Part 74.  This program is not subject to the
intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or
Health Systems Agency review.
 
The PHS strongly encourages all grant recipients to provide a
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco
products. This is consistent with the PHS mission to protect and
advance the physical and mental health of the American people.
 
.

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