Full Text DE-93-04


NIH GUIDE, Volume 22, Number 10, March 12, 1993

RFA:  DE-93-04

P.T. 44

  Biomedical Research Training 
  Oral Diseases 

National Institute of Dental Research

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  August 10, 1993
Application Receipt Date:  September 10, 1993


The National Institute of Dental Research (NIDR) invites applications
proposing institutional training programs in basic and clinical
sciences pertaining to oral health research.  The NIDR supports
research on the causes, epidemiology, prevention, diagnoses and
treatment of dental caries, periodontal and soft tissue diseases,
craniofacial anomalies and orofacial pain.  This includes normal and
abnormal craniofacial development; the structure and function of
teeth, jaws, oral mucosa, bone, connective tissue, salivary glands
and other organs and tissues of the craniofacial complex; trigeminal
neurobiology; the relationship of behavioral, social, economic and
cultural factors to oral diseases and conditions; dental
biomaterials; and the role of fluoride and nutrition in oral health
and disease.  It also emphasizes the need for research on older
Americans, minority groups, and individuals with medical and
handicapping conditions or who are otherwise at high risk for oral
health problems.

The primary objective of these training programs is to develop highly
qualified, clinical investigators by supporting postdoctoral training
of individuals with D.D.S., D.M.D., or equivalent dental degree, who
are committed to a career in oral health research.  Applications also
may include pre- and postdoctoral training for basic scientists
and/or short-term training for dental students in the proposed
programs.  Proposed training must be relevant to the goals of the
NIDR, as described in the NIDR Long-Range Research Plan for the
Nineties, "Broadening the Scope."  Availability of this publication
is described under INQUIRIES.


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 Request
for Applications (RFA), NRSA - Institutional Training Applications,
is related to the priority area of oral health.  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).


Applications may be submitted from domestic non-profit, public, and
private institutions and the applicant institution must have or be
able to develop, the staff and facilities required for the proposed

Levels of Training and Trainee Eligibility

Several studies and advisory panels have emphasized the importance of
graduate-level training leading to the Ph.D. degree in order to
prepare dentists for productive careers in oral health research.
However, training in oral health research is also appropriate for
pre- and postdoctoral basic scientists and for dental students during
their professional education.

Training will be provided at one or more of the following levels:
(1) dentists pursuing a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in basic science;
(2) dentists pursuing postdoctoral research training; (3)
baccalaureate degree holders pursuing a Ph.D. or equivalent degree;
(4) Ph.D. degree holders pursuing postdoctoral research training; and
(5) pre-dental degree students pursuing a short-term research
experience, usually during, but not limited to, the summer months.

Preference for post-doctoral trainees must be given to individuals
who have received, as of the beginning of an appointment, a D.D.S.,
D.M.D., or equivalent dental degree from an accredited domestic or
foreign institution.  If the degree has not yet been conferred, a
statement, by an authorized official of the degree-granting
institution, that all degree requirements have been met is

Predoctoral trainees must have received a baccalaureate degree as of
the beginning date of the appointment and must be enrolled in a
graduate program leading to the award of a Ph.D. or an equivalent
degree in biomedical or behavioral oral health research.

Trainees for short-term research experiences must be enrolled in a
program leading to a D.D.S. or equivalent degree.

Individuals who wish to interrupt their dental school studies for one
or more years to engage in full-time research training before
completing their professional degrees are eligible; however, prior
approval by the NIDR is required before an appointment can be
offered, as well as prior approval by the Institution.

Individuals with a Ph.D. or equivalent degree may be appointed to the
training grant.  However, in general, they are expected to apply for
an individual postdoctoral NRSA fellowship award (F32).

Trainees must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United
States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence (i.e.,
in possession of the Alien Registration Receipt Card I-551 or I-151)
at the time of appointment.  Individuals on temporary or student
visas are not eligible.


This RFA will use the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National
Research Service Award (NRSA) Institutional Research Training Grant
(T32).  Responsibility for the planning, direction, and execution of
the proposed project will be solely that of the applicant.  The total
project period for applications submitted in response to this RFA may
not exceed five years; however, awards are renewable.

Trainees may receive up to five years of support at the predoctoral
level and three years of support at the postdoctoral level, including
any combination of support from institutional training awards and
individual fellowship awards.  Extensions beyond these periods
require a waiver from the NIH.  Dentists requiring additional time to
complete training as a participant in a Ph.D. program may anticipate
favorable consideration of a waiver request, contingent upon
certification of the recipient's good academic standing.  It is
expected that postdoctoral trainees with the Ph.D., D.D.S., or
equivalent degree will engage in at least two years of research


Approximately $300,000 has been set-aside for this program.  The NIDR
expects to make one or two institutional training awards in response
to this RFA.  This level of support is dependent on the receipt of a
sufficient number of applications of high scientific and educational
merit.  Although this program is provided for in the financial plans
of the NIDR, awards pursuant to this RFA are contingent upon the
availability of funds for this purpose.

Only one training award will be made to any institution unless the
training programs are in distinctly different areas of oral health


The training program must provide opportunities for individuals to
carry out supervised biomedical or behavioral oral health research
and develop research skills.  Clinical programs must have strong
relationships with basic scientists that will assure trainees the
opportunity to acquire the necessary foundation for future
independent research.

The training program director will be responsible for the selection
and appointment of trainees and for the overall direction of the

Applicants may request as many postdoctoral, predoctoral, and/or
short-term trainee positions as can be justified.  However, five or
more positions for postdoctoral trainees over the five-year period
must be proposed.  Acceptance of postdoctoral trainees must be
limited to the first three years of the five-year award, e.g,, two
trainees the first year, two the second year, and one the third year.
The number and types of positions awarded will be determined by peer
review, program needs, and the availability of funds.

Training grants may not be used to support studies leading to a
D.D.S. or other similar professional degrees, or to support
residencies, i.e., postgraduate training for dentists providing
health care directly to patients where the majority of their time is
spent in non-research clinical training.  However, if a specified
period of full-time research training is creditable toward specialty
board certification, the training grant may support such research
training if the trainee has shown a clear interest in a research
career.  Since recently graduated dentists usually have little or no
prior research training, the training must include a minimum of two
years of basic research training.

Additional information regarding "Availability of Short-term Research
Training Positions on Institutional National Research Service Awards
for Students in Health-professional Degree Programs" and "National
Research Service Award Institutional Research Training Grants" is
given in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 11,
March 20, 1992.

Stipends and Other Training Costs

For predoctoral and the short-term trainees, at all levels of
experience, the stipend is $8,800 per year ($734 per month).

For postdoctoral trainees, the stipend is determined by the number of
years of relevant postdoctoral experience at the time of appointment.
Relevant experience may include research (including industrial),
teaching, internship, residency, clinical practice, or other time
spent in a health-related field beyond that of the qualifying
doctoral degree.

The postdoctoral stipends are as follows:

Years of Relevant Experience               Stipend

0                                          $18,600
1                                           19,700
2                                           25,600
3                                           26,900
4                                           28,200
5                                           29,500
6                                           30,800
7 or more                                   32,300

Stipends may be supplemented by an institution from non-Federal
funds.  Federal funds may be used for stipend supplementation only if
specifically authorized under the terms of the program from which the
supplemental funds are derived.  An individual may make use of
Federal educational loan funds or Department of Veterans' Affairs
benefits when permitted by those programs.  Under no circumstance may
the condition of stipend supplementation detract from or prolong the

The Tax Reform Act of 1986, Public Law 99-514, impacts on the tax
liability of all individuals supported under the NRSA program.
Degree trainees may exclude only required course tuition, fees,
books, supplies, and equipment. Non-degree trainees will be required
to report stipends and all monies paid on their behalf for tuition
and fees.  These statutory requirements went into effect January 1,

The NIH is not in a position to advise students or institutions about
their tax liability.  In any event, changes in the taxability of
stipends in no way alters the relationship between NRSA fellows,
trainees, and institutions.  NRSA stipends are not now, and never
have been, salaries.  Trainees supported under the NRSA are not in an
employer-employee relationship with the NIH or the institution at
which they are pursuing research training.

Tuition and fees, including medical insurance, are allowable trainee
costs if such charges are required of all persons in a similar
training status at the institution, without regard to their source of
support.  Tuition at the postdoctoral level, if justifiable, is
limited to that required for specific courses in support of the
approved training program.  Annual increments in tuition costs beyond
the first year of a five-year award may not exceed six percent.

Trainee travel, including attendance at scientific meetings that the
institution determines to be necessary to the individual's training,
is an allowable trainee cost.

Institutional costs of $1,500 per year per predoctoral trainee and
$2,500 per year per postdoctoral trainee and $125 per month per
short-term trainee may be requested to defray the cost of training
related expenses, such as staff salaries, consultant costs,
equipment, research supplies, and staff travel.

Indirect costs based on eight percent of total allowable direct
costs, or actual indirect costs, whichever is less, may be requested.
Applications from State and local government agencies may request
full indirect cost reimbursement.

Payback Provisions

Trainees, including short-term trainees, must sign an agreement that
they will fulfill the payback requirements.  Trainees agree to engage
in biomedical or health-related behavioral research and/or teaching
for a period equal to the period of support in excess of 12 months.

Trainees must undertake the obligated service on a continuous basis
within two years after termination of support.  Individuals who fail
to fulfill the obligation through service must pay back the total
amount of funds paid to the individual for the obligation period plus
interest at a rate determined by the Secretary of the Treasury.
Financial payback must be completed within three years of the date
the United States becomes entitled to recover such amount.

Under certain conditions, the Secretary of Health and Human Services
may extend the period for starting service or for repayment, permit
breaks in the period of service or repayment, or otherwise waive or
suspend the payback obligation of an individual.

Officials of the applicant organization responsible for recruitment
of trainees should familiarize themselves with the terms of the
payback service requirement and explain them carefully to prospective
trainees before an appointment to the training grant is offered.

For additional information, including the grounds for approving
extensions of support and payback provisions, refer to the
announcement in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, "National
Research Service Awards - Guidelines for Individual Awards -
Institutional Grants," Special Edition, Volume 13, No. 1, January 6,



NIH policy is that applicants for NIH clinical research grants will
be required to include minorities and women in study populations so
that research findings can be of benefit to all persons at risk of
the disease, disorder or condition under study; special emphasis must
be placed on the need for inclusion of minorities and women in
studies of diseases, disorders and conditions which
disproportionately affect them.  This policy is intended to apply to
males and females of all ages.  If women or minorities are excluded
or inadequately represented in clinical research, particularly in
proposed population-based studies, a clear compelling rationale must
be provided.

The composition of the proposed study population must be described in
terms of gender and racial/ethnic group.  In addition, gender and
racial/ethnic issues must be addressed in developing a research
design and sample size appropriate for the scientific objectives of
the study.  This information must be included in the form PHS 398
(rev. 9/91) in item 4 on page 1, Human Subjects, and in Section B,
number 5 of the Research Training Program Plan.  Applicants are urged
to assess carefully the feasibility of including the broadest
possible representation of minority groups. However, NIH recognizes
that it may not be feasible or appropriate in all research projects
to include representation of the full array of United States
racial/ethnic minority populations (i.e., Native Americans [including
American Indians or Alaskan Natives], Asian/Pacific Islanders,
Blacks, Hispanics).

The rationale for studies on single minority population groups must
be provided.

For the purpose of this policy, clinical research is defined as human
biomedical and behavioral studies of etiology, epidemiology,
prevention (and preventive strategies), diagnosis, or treatment of
diseases, disorders or conditions, including but not limited to
clinical trials.

The usual NIH policies concerning research on human subjects also
apply.  Basic research or clinical studies in which human tissues
cannot be identified or linked to individuals are excluded.  However,
every effort must be made to include human tissues from women and
racial/ethnic minorities when it is important to apply the results of
the study broadly, and this must be addressed by the applicants.

If the required information is not contained within the application,
the application will be returned.

Peer reviewers will address specifically whether the research plan in
the application conforms to these policies.  If the representation of
women or minorities in a study design is inadequate to answer the
scientific question(s) addressed AND the justification for the
selected study population is inadequate, it will be considered a
scientific weakness or deficiency in the study design and will be
reflected in assigning the priority score to the application.

All applications for clinical research submitted to NIH are required
to address these policies.  NIH funding components will not award
grants that do not comply with these policies.


Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by August 10, 1993, a
letter of intent that includes a descriptive title of the proposed
research training program, the name, address, and telephone number of
the Program Director, the identities of other key personnel and
participating institutions, and the number and title of the RFA in
response to which the application may be submitted.

Although a letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and does
not enter into the review of subsequent applications, the information
that it contains is helpful in planning for the review of
applications.  It allows NIDR staff to estimate the potential review
workload and to avoid conflict of interest in the review.

The letter of intent is to be sent to Dr. Valega at the address
listed under INQUIRIES.


It is strongly recommended that prospective applicants contact Dr.
Valega early in the planning phase of application preparation.  Such
contact may help ensure that applications are responsive to this RFA.

Applications are to be submitted on form PHS 398 (rev. 9/91).
Application forms are available at most institutional offices of
sponsored research; from the Office of Grants Inquiries, Division of
Research Grants, National Institutes of Health, 5333 Westbard Avenue,
Room 449, Bethesda, MD 20892, telephone (301) 496-7441 (435-0714
after 03/29/93); and from the NIDR program administrator listed under

To identify the application as a response to this RFA, check "yes" on
item 2a of page 1 of the application and enter "RFA:  DE-93-04, NRSA
the application form PHS 398 must be affixed to the bottom of the
face page.  Failure to use this label could result in delayed
processing of the application such that it may not reach the review
committee in time for review.

Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including
the Checklist, and three signed, photocopies, in one package to:

Division of Research Grants
National Institutes of Health
Westwood Building, Room 240
Bethesda, MD  20892-4500**

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application
must also be sent to:

H. George Hausch, Ph.D.
Scientific Review Section
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 519
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-7658 (301/594-7632 after 03/29/93)

This RFA is for a single competition.  Applications must be received
by September 10, 1993.  If an application is received after that date
or deemed non-responsive to the RFA, it will be returned to the
applicant without review.  The Division of Research Grants (DRG) will
not accept any application in response to this announcement that is
essentially the same as one currently pending initial review, unless
the applicant withdraws the pending application.  The DRG will not
accept any application that is essentially the same as one already
reviewed.  This does not preclude the submission of substantial
revisions of applications already reviewed, but such applications
must include an introduction addressing the previous critique.


Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by
the NIDR Special Grants Review Committee (DSR), a standing NIH
initial review group.  Applicant interviews or site visits may be

The following review criteria will be applied:

o  The proposed research training and program objectives, design and
direction; core curriculum; prescribed set of courses or seminars;
the manner in which individual guided research activities will be
selected; procedures for monitoring trainee progress; the existence
of a true training program, as contrasted with fellowship training
for an individual trainee; the combination of different levels of
training; the appropriateness of the proposed number of trainees; the
unique and/or innovative nature of the training program; resources
and facilities.

o  The qualifications of the program director and participating
faculty including the roles of specific preceptors; time commitment;
ability to compete successfully for research support; current
research grant holdings and pending research grant activities;
specific experience in graduate research training.

o  Training environment:  institutional commitment, the quality of
the facilities, and the availability of research support; evidence of
a high level of ongoing fundamental and clinical research activity;
availability of equipment, facilities, and clinical resources.

o  Selection of trainees:  plans for recruitment and criteria for the
selection of trainees, availability of high-quality candidates,
including minorities and women; how trainees are assigned to

o  Past training record:  for both new and renewal applications the
past performance of the program director and preceptors in training
scientists; reviewers will look for accomplishments, or potential, of
the faculty in the training of scientists who will make major
contributions to oral health research, as indicated by success in
obtaining awards, such as fellowships, career awards, and individual
research grant support, the rate at which former trainees establish
independent productive research careers, recognition for outstanding
scientific accomplishment, and involvement of former trainees in
academic, clinically oriented, and laboratory research and their
ongoing productivity.  For renewal applications, the record in
filling trainee positions and the completion record of trainees will
be considered.  Cumulative information on the career development of
all former trainees, including information about their minority
status, will be evaluated.

Attention must be given to recruiting women and individuals from
minority groups that are underrepresented, nationally, in these
sciences.  A plan must be included for the recruitment of these
individuals.  After review of the training grant application for
scientific and technical merit and assignment of a priority score,
the DSR will comment on the plans for recruiting women and
individuals from underrepresented minority groups to the training
program.  In the case of renewal applications, this will include the
accomplishments in recruiting women and individuals from
underrepresented minority groups and in training them for research
positions.  No awards will be made to applications lacking this

Applications must include a description of formal and/or informal
activities related to instruction about the responsible conduct of
research to be incorporated into the proposed research training
program.  Information must be provided on the subject matter of the
instruction, the appropriateness of the instruction, the format of
the instruction, the amount and nature of faculty participation, and
the frequency and duration of instruction.  A rationale for the plan
of instruction must be provided.  Progress reports on the type of
instruction provided, topics covered and other relevant details, such
as attendance by trainees and who taught the material, must be
included in the application.  No awards will be made to applications
lacking this component.  The announcement of this requirement was
published in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 43,
November 27, 1992.

Additional information regarding, "Modification of Existing Review
Criteria for NRSA Institutional Research Training Grants," is given
the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 11, March 20,

Copies of the NIH Guide are usually available in the business or
grants office of most academic institutions and from the Office of
Grants Inquiries, Division of Research Grants at the address listed

Secondary review will be by the National Advisory Dental Research
Council.  Among the information the Council considers will be the
report of the DSR on the plans for, and success in, recruitment of
women and individuals from underrepresented minority groups.

Review and Award Schedule

Applications will be processed according to the following schedule:

Application     Initial Review   Council         Earliest
Receipt Date    Group Meeting    Meeting         Award Date

Sep 10, 1993    Feb/Mar 1994     May/Jun 1994    Jul 1994


The earliest award date will be July 1, 1994.

The NIDR will notify the applicant of the Council's action shortly
after its meeting.  Funding decisions will be made based on the DSR
and Council recommendation, the need for research personnel in
specified program areas, and the availability of funds.

Applicants are reminded that NIDR funding decisions will take into
consideration those applications that offer training at the following
levels in priority order:  (1) dentists pursuing a Ph.D. or
equivalent degree in a basic science; (2) dentists pursuing
postdoctoral research training; (3) baccalaureate degree holders
pursuing a Ph.D. or equivalent degree; (4) Ph.D. degree holders
pursuing postdoctoral research training; and (5) pre-dental degree
students pursuing a short-term research experience.

The NIDR appreciates the value of complementary funding from other
public and private sources, including foundations and industrial
concerns, for activities that will complement and expand those
supported by the NIDR.


Written and telephone inquiries concerning this RFA are encouraged.
The opportunity to clarify any issues or questions from potential
applicants is welcome.

Direct inquiries regarding programmatic issues to:

Thomas M. Valega, Ph.D.
Special Assistant for Manpower Development and Training
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 503
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-6324 (301/594-7617 after 03/2993)
FAX:  (301) 496-4180 (301/594-7616 after 03/29/93)

Direct inquiries pertaining to fiscal and policy matters to:

Theresa Ringler, Grants Management Officer
Extramural Program
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 510
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 496-7437 (301/594-7629 after 03/29/93)

Copies of the NIDR Long-Range Research Plan for the Nineties,
"Broadening the Scope," are available by written request to NIDR,
P.O. Box 54793, Washington, DC 20032


NRSA Institutional Research Training Grants are made under the
authority of Section 487 of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act as
amended (42 USC 288), Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations,
Part 66, is applicable to this program. This program is also
described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance No. 93.121.
This program is not subject to the intergovernmental review
requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health Systems Agency


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