DEVELOPING AND IMPROVING INSTITUTIONAL ANIMAL RESOURCES

Release Date:  February 19, 1999

PA NUMBER:  PAR-99-066

P.T.

National Center for Research Resources

Application Receipt Dates:  June 1, October 1

PURPOSE

The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) encourages the submission of
individual animal resource improvement grant applications from biomedical
research institutions.  The major objective of this program is to upgrade
animal facilities to support the conduct of Public Health Service (PHS)-
supported biomedical and behavioral research.  A related objective is to
assist institutions in complying with the USDA Animal Welfare Act and DHHS
policies related to the care and use of laboratory animals.  Support is
limited to alterations and renovations (A&R) to improve laboratory animal
facilities, and the purchase of major equipment items for animal resources,
diagnostic laboratories, transgenic animal resources, or similar associated
activities.

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2000

The 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 PA, Developing and Improving Institutional Animal
Resources, is related to all priority areas.  Potential applicants may obtain
a copy of "Healthy People 2000" (full Report: Stock No. 017-110-00474-0 or
Summary Report: Stock No. 017-001-00473-1) through the Superintendent of
Documents, Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402-9325 (telephone
202-512-1800).

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

Any domestic public or private institution, organization, or association is
eligible to apply for this grant if the institution has one or more research
projects currently supported by the PHS that involve the use of laboratory
animals.  Institutions and commercial firms providing only services or
products and without a clearly defined animal related research component are
not eligible to apply.  Also, this program will not support requests for
equipment used for teaching purposes and for housing non-research animals. 
Applications from other Federal agencies or institutions (e.g., Department of
Veterans Affairs) are limited to requests for equipment only.  Applicants may
not submit more than one application or apply for other NCRR support for
developing and improving institutional animal resources in the same Federal
fiscal year.

For purposes of these guidelines, an "institution" is defined as the
organizational component identified on page 1, item 11 of the PHS 398 (rev.
4/98), for which descriptive information is provided on page 9 in the grant
application form PHS 398 kit.  Separate applications may be submitted from
different colleges or schools on the same campus of a university within the
same Federal fiscal year if they have different organizational component
codes.  If this is done, documentation from an appropriate institutional
official, stating that the applications are part of a coordinated, campus-wide
plan to improve the animal facilities, must be provided as part of the
applications.  The applicant institution is strongly encouraged to develop a
single application for a campus-wide program with a single, centralized animal
care program whenever possible or feasible.

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

The mechanism available for the support of these improvement projects is the
Grant for Repair, Renovation, and Modernization of Existing Research
Facilities (G20).  The total budget request for the improvement grant
application and award is limited to $700,000 (direct costs), of which not more
than $500,000 may be used for alterations and renovations (A&R) and not more
than $200,000 may be used for moveable equipment.  Facilities and
administrative costs are not provided.  Matching funds from non-Federal
sources are required, equal to or exceeding one-half of the total allowable
costs (equipment and A&R) of the requested project ($1 Federal to $1 non-
Federal).  These matching funds must be applied to the specific project
described in the application and cannot be met by citing other expenditures.

Since the nature and scope of the projects proposed in response to this PA
might vary, it is anticipated that the size of an award will vary also.

Allowable Costs

Items that may be requested under this grant mechanism include:

o  A&R to improve existing laboratory animal facilities, and allowable fees
associated with the A&R project.
o  Major resource equipment related to the improvement project, such as animal
cage systems and cage washers.
o  Equipment items, or an aggregate of identical equipment items, that have a
total cost of $5,000 (or lower, depending on the institution's definition for
equipment).  Items that are part of a system and require the purchase of small
component parts (e.g., a rack and cages or microisolator units) may be
requested and priced as a single item.  A description of the individual
components of such systems must be provided.
o  General-purpose equipment items for centralized surgeries, diagnostic
laboratories, transgenic animal facilities, and other similar associated
activities when they are an integral part of the animal facility and available
to all investigators.
o  Basic equipment such as microscopes necessary for operation of the
facility.
o  Environmental monitoring systems.  However, if such a system has multiple
uses (e.g., the monitoring of research data or security), only those costs
related to monitoring or providing for animal care (e.g., environmental
monitoring) are allowable.

Improvement grants are not intended to provide support for:

o  General operational support for the resource (e.g., funding for personnel
or consumable supplies for routine animal care).
o  Specialized research equipment or facilities for use by only a few
investigators.
o  New construction, including the completion of shell space.
o  Equipment intended for teaching or non-research purposes.
o  Office and research equipment, computers or data processing items.
o  Physical security systems.

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES

Animal resource improvement grants are awarded to assist biomedical research
institutions in upgrading animal facilities and developing administratively
centralized and uniformly effective programs of research animal care in
support of PHS-funded research.  Another major objective is to assist
institutions in complying, and maintaining compliance, with provisions of the
USDA Animal Welfare Act and DHHS policies related to the care and use of
laboratory animals.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

Applications are to be submitted on the grant application form PHS 398 (rev.
4/98). 
There are two receipt dates per year of June 1 and October 1.  Application
kits may be obtained from the institution's office of sponsored research and
from:

Division of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources, National Institutes
of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda, MD 20892-7910, Telephone:
(301) 435-0714; FAX: (301) 480-0525; email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov.  Application
kits are also available on the internet at: 
http://www.nih.gov/grants/forms.htm

Prospective applicants are encouraged to review the NIH Grants Policy
Statement (rev. 10/98) sections dealing with alterations and renovations and
equipment prior to completing the PHS 398 form.

Applications must follow the instructions provided in the form PHS 398 kit,
except for the following:

Form Page 1:

Item 2 - Check the box marked "YES" and type in the number and title of this
program announcement.

Item 5 - Check the box marked "No" at Item 5a.  Item 5b - Not applicable.

Item 6 - The initial budget period may be either two or three years in length.

Form Page 2:

Personnel - Only key personnel, investigators who will use the proposed
facilities, the principal investigator and the program director should be
listed here although salary support may not be requested.  This must include
the chief or consulting veterinarian.

Form Page 4: Detailed Budget for Initial Budget Period

Personnel Category - List only key individuals, and complete columns 1-4;
salary support should not be requested.

The total cost of the equipment and A&R needed should be entered in the
rectangular space under the appropriate headings on the left. Equipment should
be classified as movable or fixed, using the institution's own classification
guidelines.  Fixed equipment is considered as part of the A&R request.  The
right hand column should reflect only the PHS request.  The Total Direct Costs
(bottom right hand column total) should be the total request to the PHS.  The
total request for PHS support may not exceed $700,000, direct costs.  Of this
total, the A&R request may not exceed $500,000, and the moveable equipment
request may not exceed $200,000.

Form Page 5 - Budget for Entire Proposed Project Period - Not applicable (do
not complete this section).

A cost estimate should be provided, and placed after Form Page 4. This
estimate should detail:

1.  For moveable equipment, the dollar request from NIH, amount to be funded
from other sources, and total cost.
2.  For eligible A&R costs, the dollar request from NIH, amount to be funded
from other sources, and total cost.
3.  For total project cost, the dollar request from NIH, amount to be funded
from other sources, and total cost. Indicate the source for funding from other
sources.
4.  For alterations and renovations requests, list separately the projected
costs of (a) Demolition; (b) General; (c) Plumbing; (d) HVAC; (e) Electrical;
(f) Architect/Engineer Fee; (g) Other Costs (Specify); and (h) Fixed
Equipment, with the total eligible A&R costs listed.  If multiple sites are
involved, the A&R and cost estimates should be described separately for each
site.  List the total net square feet of floor space to be renovated and the
estimated cost per net sq. ft., excluding fixed equipment.

Additional Form Pages

Biographical Sketch Page - Provide a biographical sketch for key personnel who
will use the proposed facilities, the principal investigator and the program
director.  Do not exceed the two-page limitation for each.
Other Support Page - Provide the information requested for all key personnel
listed above.

Specific Instructions - Research Plan

The following instructions should be used in lieu of the PHS 398 instructions
for this section of the application; however, revised applications must
include an introduction addressing criticisms and must highlight changes in
the application as described in the instructions for PHS 398.  The Research
Plan section of the application (Items A-D) must strictly adhere to a limit of
25 pages. The outline suggested below should be followed in describing the
program.  All information critical to the review must be in the Research Plan,
not in an appendix.

A.  Specific Aims - Clearly present the aims of the animal resource
improvement project and relate them to the short- and long-term goals of the
institution's animal resource program, and the research needs of the
institution.

B.  Background and Significance - This section should address the overall
animal care and use program and the need for improvements to meet current and
future laboratory animal needs for biomedical research.

Background

Provide an overall description of the institution's animal care and use
program. Give relevant background information and describe the current status
of the institution's animal resource facilities and program as they relate to
biomedical research and research training. Describe the institution's overall
involvement in animal-related research.  This section should include a
description of the following aspects of the animal resource:

1.  Administrative arrangements and structure of the animal resource - The
lines of authority and responsibility for administering the institution's
animal care and use program should be clearly presented. The role and
composition of the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) and how
compliance with relevant laws, policies, and guidelines is achieved should be
included.

2.  Animal care procedures and the animal health program - This section should
describe housing, caging, feeding, record keeping, sanitation, and other
animal care practices; animal health program which includes clinical services,
laboratory support, preventive medicine programs, and any relevant specialized
procedures; veterinary oversight; vendor surveillance; conditioning programs;
colony and environmental monitoring; and diagnostic capabilities in anatomic
pathology, clinical chemistry, hematology, and microbiology. Data should be
provided to characterize the extent of these activities, such as numbers of
laboratory procedures for monitoring animal health, veterinary inspections for
animal health, etc.  If specialized equipment items are requested, the
husbandry program to utilize this equipment should be outlined.

3.  Staffing - Outline the total staff and organization of the animal
resource, both currently in place and as planned following the requested
improvements.  Briefly describe the qualifications of the animal care staff
and the training opportunities available to them.

4.  Animal Program Data - Indicate the number of animals (by species) used or
produced per year and the average daily census (by species) for each facility. 
Provide a brief description of all on-campus and off-campus animal facilities,
including sites where experimental surgery is performed.  Indicate who manages
each facility.  Indicate whether the institution is accredited by the American
Association for Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care (AAALAC). If equipment
is requested for surgical or diagnostic facilities, the caseload, species,
types and numbers of surgeries or diagnostic tests must be documented.

5.  Animal Program Funding - Provide, for the most recently completed Federal
fiscal year information on:  (1) Investigators currently using the facility,
including types of animals involved and level of usage; (2) the institution's
total number and total direct costs of research projects using laboratory
animals, indicating separately the number and costs of those funded from PHS
and non-PHS sources; (3) for facilities for which improvement support is
requested, list by facility name the number of research projects and total
direct costs of the projects relevant to each.

List all current financial support for the animal resource, including sources
and amounts (e.g., recharge, core funding from the institution, etc.) and the
annual operating budget (listed by major categories).  Provide a copy of per
diem and service charge schedules and indicate their method of determination
(this information may be included in an Appendix).

6.  Previous and Future Improvements - Expenditures for capital improvements
(facilities and equipment) during the past five years and future plans for
meeting such needs should be described.  Any previous support for improvement
of the institution's animal facilities from the NCRR, NIH should be noted. 
The use of this support and its impact on the animal care program should be
briefly described.

7.  Program Needs - List deficiencies in the animal care program that have
been cited by the AAALAC, the IACUC facility review reports, and the
institution's PHS Animal Welfare Assurance Statement.  Any problems in meeting
the provisions of the Animal Welfare Act should also be addressed.

Significance

Describe the significance of the proposed resource improvement project to the
institution's overall biomedical research programs, as well as to specific
research projects that will be affected.  If appropriate, the application
should demonstrate both the need for the requested items and a sound plan for
obtaining or maintaining the entire animal resource at required standards.

C.  Progress Report/Preliminary Studies - Not applicable.

D.  Research Design and Methods

Clearly show how the proposed improvements will expand, improve or maintain
existing research and research support activities.  Brief descriptions of
major research projects using the resource should be provided including
source, time period, and amount of funding and level of animal usage.  Future
scientific needs to be addressed as part of the improvement should also be
described. It is important to describe how the requested improvements will
correct the deficiencies and problems described in the Background section.
Demonstrate how the proposed facility improvement program fits into the
institution's overall plan to meet or maintain PHS standards for animal care
and use.  If the project is part of an overall (larger) facility improvement
plan, the application should describe the larger plan and how the project fits
into that plan.

Describe and provide detailed justifications for the requested equipment
items.  The manufacturer, model number, size, capacity, or design criteria,
total unit cost and facility where it will be used should be included. 
Requests for surgical equipment must be justified by listing the number of
investigators and PHS grant support received (can be provided in tabular
form), the caseload, and the types of surgical procedures performed.  Failure
to adequately justify each requested item will likely result in its deletion
from the recommended budget.  For any proposed A&R, a narrative summary (as
outlined below), line drawings, and cost estimates must be provided.  The
following sample format is suggested:

Narrative Summary

(1) Relate the proposed renovations to the projected animal populations (by
species) and research projects that will use the facility.
(2) List the functional components, including the size (dimensions) and square
footage of each component (room, alcove, cubicle) that will be directly
affected by the renovation project.
(3) List engineering criteria applicable to each component (mechanical,
electrical, and utilities).  Include information such as the number of air
changes per hour, electrical power, light levels, hot and cold water, steam.
(4) List appropriate architectural criteria (such as width of corridors and
doors, surface finishes).
(5) List and justify all fixed equipment items requested for the renovated
area.
(6) List and justify all movable equipment items requested for the renovated
area.

Line Drawings

(1) Submit line drawings on 8-1/2" x 11" paper only. (DO NOT SUBMIT
BLUEPRINTS) These drawings will not be counted against the 25-page limit.  All
floor plans must be legible, with the scale clearly indicated.
(2) The line drawings of the proposed renovation must be at a scale adequate
to explain the project.  The drawings should indicate size (dimensions),
function, and net and gross square feet of space for each room.  The total net
and gross square feet of space to be renovated should also be given.
(3) The plan should indicate the location of the proposed renovation area in
the building.
(4) Include the as-built drawings of the proposed renovation area and indicate
any areas which will be demolished.
(5) Changes or additions to existing mechanical and electrical systems should
be clearly described in notes made directly on the plan or attached to the
plan.
(6) Indicate the type(s) of new finishes to be applied to room surfaces.

Cost Estimates

Detailed cost estimates must be included.  Provide vendor quotes when
available.

Assurance to Provide Matching Funds

A letter of assurance to provide matching funds and the source of those funds,
signed by the responsible institutional official authorized to commit funds,
must be provided with the application. Matching funds must be non-Federal
funds set-aside for this project.

The completed original application (signed original including appendices, if
any) and three exact photocopies of the signed application and appendices must
be submitted to:

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

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application (with
appendices, if any) must be sent under separate cover to:

Dr. D.G. Patel
Office of Review
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6018, MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Bethesda, MD 20817 (for express/courier service)

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Upon receipt, applications will be reviewed for completeness by the Center for
Scientific Review and responsiveness by NCRR.  Those applications judged to be
unresponsive, incomplete, or ineligible will be returned to the applicant. 
Applications that are complete and responsive will be reviewed for scientific
and technical merit by the Scientific and Technical Review Board on Biomedical
and Behavioral Research Facilities established for this purpose by the NCRR. 
The National Advisory Research Resources Council will conduct the second level
of review.

Applications that are complete and responsive to the program announcement will
be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by an appropriate peer review
group convened in accordance with the standard NIH peer review procedures.  As
part of the initial merit review, all applications may receive a written
critique and undergo a process in which only those applications deemed to have
the highest scientific merit, generally the top half of applications under
review, will be discussed, assigned a priority score, and receive a second
level review by the appropriate national advisory council or board.

REVIEW CRITERIA

Factors considered in the appraisal of an animal resource improvement project
include:

A.  The Improvement Request

1.  Research to be supported - The overall scope of the ongoing PHS-supported
biomedical and behavioral research involving laboratory animals which will be
affected by the proposed improvements will be considered.  In addition, the
resulting expanded or proposed future biomedical and behavioral research
activities will be considered.

2.  Need - The application should show how the grant support will meet current
and future laboratory animal research needs, particularly for smaller or
developing institutions, and how this will help the institution meet or
maintain standards of the Animal Welfare Act and PHS policies concerning the
care and use of laboratory animals.

3.  Design Considerations - The proposed project will be judged for technical
soundness, appropriateness and suitability of the proposed renovation project
for addressing current and future needs of the institution.

4.  Budget - the budget will be evaluated in relationship to the application's
responsiveness to these guidelines, justification provided for each of the
requested items, cost effectiveness, and the institution's perceived
commitment to the animal care program.

B.  The Animal Care Program

The scope of the animal care and use program to be enhanced by this facility
improvement request should be carefully defined.  For the purpose of this
application, the animal care program should cover the entire applicant
institution.

1.  Animal Care - The quality of the animal husbandry program at the applicant
institution will be assessed.  The extent to which the project will enhance
the welfare of animals maintained in the facility will be evaluated, including
advances in the humane treatment of the animals due to husbandry changes
allowed by the improvements.

2.  Personnel - The technical and professional staff will be evaluated. The
institution should have a sufficient number of professional staff with
appropriate qualifications and experience to operate the animal resource in a
competent manner.  The facility should also have qualified non-professional
staff and supporting services.

3.  Administrative Arrangements - An evaluation will be made of the
administrative arrangements for routine management of the animal resource. The
institutional plan to assure a comprehensive and acceptable animal care and
use program will be evaluated.  The institution should have a record of
commitment and a sound plan for financial support of the resource, through a
recharge system, per diem charges, institutional support, etc.

4.  Resources and environment - The suitability of the institutional setting
for achieving the goals of the program will be considered.  This will include
an appraisal of the academic environment and the support for the animal
resource by the administration and faculty.

AWARD CRITERIA

Applications will compete with all others in the G20 category for available
funds.  An institution must have current PHS funding for research involving
laboratory animals to be eligible for an award. The following will also be
considered when making funding decisions:

o  Merit of the proposed project as determined by peer
review.
o  Institutional assurance of non-federal matching funds.
o  Availability of funds.
o  Facility requirements of the institution.

Evidence of continued PHS research funding will be verified prior to award.

Award Conditions

Following the award, funds for A&R will not be released until final
architectural drawings, specifications, and updated cost estimates are
approved by NCRR. The grantee will begin a process of design approval with the
Division of Engineering Services (DES) immediately upon receipt of the Notice
of Grant Award.  No requests to initiate the bidding process for alterations
or renovations will be entertained prior to receipt of the grant award from
NIH and subsequent approval of working drawings and specifications by NIH
staff. Responsibility for the planning, direction, and execution of the
proposed project will be solely that of the applicant. The total project
period for an application submitted in response to this PA may not exceed five
years and no indirect costs or continuation costs will be awarded.  The
initial budget period may be either two or three years in length.  All funds
must be obligated within 5 years from the date of award.

INQUIRIES

Inquiries are encouraged.  The opportunity to clarify any issues or questions
from potential applicants is welcome.

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:

W. Fred Taylor, Ph.D.
Research Facilities Improvement Program
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6030, MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0766
FAX:  (301) 480-3770
Email: taylorf@ncrr.nih.gov

Questions regarding fiscal matters may be directed to:

Mr. Paul Karadbil
Office of Grants Management
National Center for Research Resources
6705 Rockledge Drive, Room 6086, MSC 7965
Bethesda, MD  20892-7965
Telephone:  (301) 435-0844
Email: paulk@ncrr.nih.gov

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance No.
93.306, Laboratory Animal Sciences and Primate Research.  Awards will be made
under the authority of the Public Health Service Act, Title III, Section 301
(Public Law 78.410, as amended; 42 USC 241) and administered under NIH grant
policies and Federal Regulations 42 CFR Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 74 or 92. 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 and contract recipients to provide a
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco products.  In
addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking
in certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which
regular or routing education, library, day care, health care or early
childhood development services are provided to children.  This is consistent
with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of
the American people.


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