Full Text DE-94-004

NATIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE AWARD - INSTITUTIONAL TRAINING APPLICATIONS

NIH GUIDE, Volume 23, Number 14, April 8, 1994

RFA:  DE-94-004

P.T.


Keywords: 


National Institute of Dental Research

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  August 10, 1994
Application Receipt Date:  September 12, 1994

PURPOSE

The National Institute of Dental Research (NIDR) invites new and
competing applications proposing National Research Service Award
(NRSA) Institutional Research Training Grant (T32) programs in basic
biomedical, behavioral and clinical sciences pertaining to oral
health research.  The primary objective is to develop highly
qualified, clinical investigators by supporting postdoctoral training
of individuals with a D.D.S., D.M.D., or equivalent degree, who are
committed to a career in oral health research.  The secondary
objective is training of pre- and post-Ph.D. biomedical and
behavioral scientists in oral health research.

Several advisory groups have called attention to the need to expand
the pool of clinical investigators in order to take advantage of
opportunities for transfer of fundamental knowledge to improve oral
health care of the public.  For this purpose, the term clinical
research is defined as research in which patients serve as the
research subjects, and is often referred to as patient-oriented or
patient-related research.  It includes characterization of normal and
diseased human function, evaluation of new diagnostic and therapeutic
techniques and devices, patient compliance and disease prevention
regimens, drug trials, assessment of various health care practices by
various population subgroups and epidemiological studies.  In order
to address this need, applications must allocate not less than two
postdoctoral positions to trainees with a declared interest in
receiving training to conduct this type of clinical research.  The
remaining positions may be allocated to basic or clinical research
training, in the array of biomedical and behavioral research areas
pertaining to the NIDR's mission.

Programs must be relevant to the goals of the NIDR including:
research on the causes, epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis and
treatment of dental caries, periodontal and soft tissue diseases,
oral cancer, oral manifestations of AIDS, and craniofacial anomalies;
orofacial pain; temporomandibular disorders; structure and function
of teeth, jaws, oral mucosa, bone, connective tissue, salivary
glands; behavioral, social, economic and cultural factors related to
oral diseases and disorders; biomaterials; fluoride and nutrition;
and research on older Americans, gender differences, minorities,
those with medical problems and handicaps, and individuals and groups
at high-risk for oral health problems.

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 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:  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, public, and private
institutions such as dental schools and dental research institutions.
Only one application may be submitted by an institution unless the
training programs are in distinctly different areas of oral health
research.

Levels of Training and Trainee Eligibility

Training is to be provided at one or more of the following levels:
(1) dentists pursuing postdoctoral clinical research training; (2)
dentists pursuing a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in basic biomedical or
behavioral science; (3) baccalaureate degree holders pursuing a Ph.D.
or equivalent degree; (4) Ph.D. degree holders pursuing postdoctoral
research training although, generally, they are expected to apply for
an individual postdoctoral NRSA fellowship (F32).

Postdoctoral trainees 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, must be given preference.
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 acceptable.

Predoctoral trainees must have received a baccalaureate degree as of
the beginning of the appointment and 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.

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, as well as by the institution, is required
before an appointment can be offered.

Trainees must be citizens or noncitizen nationals of the United
States, or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence and
possess an Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151 or I-551).
Noncitizen nationals, although not citizens of the United States, owe
permanent allegiance to the U.S.  They are generally born in lands
which are not states but are under U.S. sovereignty, jurisdiction, or
administration.  Individuals on temporary or student visas are not
eligible.

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

Awards resulting from this RFA will be the National Institutes of
Health (NIH), NRSA Institutional Research Training Grants (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.  Awards may be renewable upon submission of a
successful competing application, depending on programmatic needs and
the availability of funds.  The anticipated award date is July 1,
1995.

Trainees may receive up to five years of NRSA 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 Ph.D.,
D.D.S., or equivalent degrees will engage in not less than two years
training.

FUNDS AVAILABLE

In response to this RFA, the NIDR expects to make up to three new or
competing awards, each with two postdoctoral positions, in the first
year.  The estimated total funding for the first year of support is
$240,000.  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.

RESEARCH OBJECTIVES

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 to ensure trainees the
opportunity to acquire the necessary foundation for independent
research.

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

Applicants must request six postdoctoral positions over the five-year
period, with two appointments in each of the first, second and third
years.  Applicants must allocate not less than two postdoctoral
positions to trainees interested in receiving training to conduct the
type of clinical research defined under PURPOSE.  Such appointments
must be made in the first and second years of the award.  The
remaining positions may be allocated to basic or clinical research
trainees, in the array of research areas relevant to the NIDR's
mission.  Three predoctoral positions may be requested over the five-
year period.  The number and types of positions awarded will be
determined by the initial review group's assessment of scientific and
educational merit, 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, or other training for dentists providing care 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 or clinical
research training.

Applicants are reminded of the importance the NIDR places on
recruitment and retention of women and underrepresented minorities to
sponsored training and career development programs.  Where feasible,
women and minority mentors should be involved as role models.

Additional information regarding NRSA Institutional Research Training
Grants is given in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21,
No. 11, March 20, 1992.  Copies of the NIH Guide are usually
available in the business or grants office of most academic
institutions.  This publication is available electronically to
institutions via BITNET or INTERNET and is also on the NIH GOPHER.
Alternative access is through the NIH Grant Line using a personal
computer (data line 301/402-2221).  Contact Dr. John James at
301/594-7270 for details.

Stipends and Other Training Costs

For predoctoral trainees, at all levels of experience, the stipend is
$10,008 per year.

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                                     $19,608
    1                                      20,700
    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.  Other NIH funds may not be used to supplement stipends.
Non-NIH Federal funds may not be used for stipend supplementation
unless 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
training.

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.

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.

Reimbursement of tuition and fees, including medical insurance, will
be consistent with NIH policy.  They 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 will not be allowed.

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 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 - reimbursement of actual indirect costs at a rate up
to, but not exceeding, eight percent of the total direct costs,
exclusive of tuition, fees and equipment, is allowed.

Payback Provisions

Predoctoral trainees do not incur payback obligations.  Postdoctoral
trainees must sign an agreement to fulfill NRSA payback requirements.
They incur payback obligation for the first twelve months of support.
This obligation will be satisfied by continuing on the training grant
for an additional 12 months.  For payback obligations which are not
satisfied in this way, trainees must engage in biomedical or
health-related behavioral research and or teaching for a period equal
to the period of support up to 12 months.  The obligated service must
be undertaken continuously 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
announcements in the NIH Guide, "National Research Service Awards -
Guidelines for Individual Awards - Institutional Grants," Special
Edition, Volume 13, No. 1, January 6, 1984, and "Modification of the
NRSA Service Payback Obligation," Volume 22, No. 27, July 30, 1993.

LETTER OF INTENT

Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by August 10, 1994, 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 conflicts-of-interest in the review.

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

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

It is strongly recommended that prospective applicants contact Dr.
Valega, at the address listed under INQUIRIES, early in the planning
phase of application preparation.  This will help ensure that
applications are responsive to the RFA.

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

Applicants must request six postdoctoral positions over the five-year
period, with two appointments in each of the first, second and third
years.  Applicants must allocate not less than two postdoctoral
positions to trainees interested in receiving training to conduct the
type of clinical research defined under PURPOSE.  Such appointments
must be made in the first and second years of the award.  The
remaining positions may be allocated to basic or clinical research
trainees, in the array of research areas relevant to the NIDR's
mission.  Three predoctoral positions may be requested over the five
year period.

A plan must be included for the recruitment of women and individuals
from minority groups that are nationally underrepresented in these
sciences.  No awards will be made to applications lacking this
component.  Where possible, women and minority preceptors should be
included, to serve as role models.

Cumulative information on the career development of all former
trainees, including information about their minority and gender
status must be included.

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 rationale, subject
matter, appropriateness, format, and the frequency and duration of
instruction; and the amount and nature of faculty participation.
Progress reports in continuation applications must include the type
of instruction, topics covered, and other details, such as attendance
by trainees and names of the instructors.  No award will be made if
an application lacks this component.

Information regarding, "Modification of Existing Review Criteria for
NRSA Institutional Research Training Grants," is given in the NIH
Guide, Vol. 21, No. 11, March 20, 1992.

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-94-004, NRSA
- Institutional Training Applications."  The RFA label available in
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
also must be sent to:

H. George Hausch, Ph.D.
Extramural Program
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 519
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 594-7632

This RFA is for a single competition.  Applications must be received
by September 12, 1994.  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 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.

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Applications will be reviewed for completeness and responsiveness to
the RFA by NIH staff.  Incomplete or nonresponsive applications will
be returned to the applicant without further consideration.
Remaining applications may be subjected to triage by the NIDR Special
Grants Review Committee, a standing NIH initial review group, to
determine their merit, relative to others received in response to the
RFA.  The NIDR will withdraw applications judged to be noncompetitive
and notify the applicant.  Applications judged to be competitive will
be evaluated for scientific and educational merit by the review
committee.

The following review criteria will be applied:

o  Research training program objectives, design and direction:
Management structure; core curriculum and available courses or
seminars; how guided research activities are selected and trainees
are assigned to preceptors; procedures for monitoring progress;
existence of a true training program, as contrasted with fellowship
training for an individual; appropriateness of the number of
trainees; unique and innovative aspects.

o  Program director, faculty and preceptors: Administrative and
scientific qualifications, roles, time commitment, ability to compete
for research support, and experience in graduate research training.

o  Training environment:  Institutional commitment; evidence of
ongoing fundamental and clinical research; availability of research
support, equipment, facilities, and clinical resources.

o  Selection of trainees:  Plans for recruitment and criteria for
selection of trainees, availability of high-quality candidates,
including minorities and women.

o  Past training record:  For new and renewal applications, potential
or performance in training scientists as indicated by former
trainees' success in obtaining research grant support, establishing
independent research careers, and involvement in clinical and basic
oral health research.

o  Recruitment and retention of women and minority trainees:  After
review of the application for scientific and educational merit and
assignment of a priority score, the Special Grants Review Committee
will comment on plans for recruiting women and underrepresented
minorities.  For renewal applications, this will include
accomplishments in recruiting and retaining women and
underrepresented minorities and training them for research careers.

o  Responsible conduct of research: The quality of scientific
integrity instruction.

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

The NIDR will notify the applicant of the Council's action shortly
after its meeting.

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 12, 1994       Feb/Mar 1995       May/Jun 1995      Jul 1995

AWARD CRITERIA

Funding decisions will be based on the Special Grant Review
Committee's and Council's recommendations; the need for research
personnel in particular program areas, including the need to train
clinical investigators; and the availability of funds.  The earliest
award date is July 1, 1995.

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.

INQUIRIES

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 and address the letter
of intent to:

Thomas M. Valega, Ph.D.
Extramural Program
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 503
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 594-7617
FAX:  (301) 594-7616

Direct inquiries pertaining to fiscal matters to:

Theresa Ringler
Extramural Program
National Institute of Dental Research
Westwood Building, Room 510
Bethesda, MD  20892
Telephone:  (301) 594-7629

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

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
review.

The Public Health Service (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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