NHLBI MINORITY INSTITUTION RESEARCH SCIENTIST DEVELOPMENT AWARD (K01)

Release Date:  May 25, 1999

RFA:  HL-99-019

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute

Letter of Intent Receipt Date: July 1, 1999
Application Receipt Date:  August 26, 1999

PURPOSE

This program provides research support to faculty members at minority
institutions who have the interest and potential to conduct high quality
research in the areas of cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, or sleep
disorders.  Important goals are to enhance the institution's science programs
and to assist in the acquisition of "hands on" research opportunities for
minority students at the applicant's institution.

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),
NHLBI Minority Institution Faculty Mentored Research Scientist Development
Award (K01), is related to one or more of the priority areas. Potential
applicants may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" at the following URL
address: http://www.crisny.org/health/us/health7.html

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

A. Minority School

The Institution must be a domestic medical or non-medical college, university
or equivalent school in which students of underrepresented minority ethnic
groups including Blacks, Hispanics,  American Indians, Alaska Natives, and 
Pacific Islanders comprise a majority (more than 50%) of the school's
enrollment.  It must have ongoing staff and facilities required for the
proposed program.  The program director at the minority school will be
responsible for the selection and appointment of trainees and the overall
direction of the training program.

B. Faculty Development Award Candidate

Candidates for this award are minority school faculty members who: 1) are
citizens of the United States, non-citizen nationals or permanent residents at
the time of application; 2) have a doctoral degree or equivalent in a
biomedical or behavioral science; 3) wish to receive specialized training in
cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, or sleep disorders research; 4) have
the background and potential to benefit from the training; and 5) are
committed to providing research opportunities for students at their
institution.

C. Mentor at Nearby Research Center

Each candidate must also identify and complete arrangements with a nearby
mentor (within approximately 100 miles) who is recognized as an accomplished
investigator in the research area proposed and who will provide guidance for
the awardee's development and research plan.  Arrangements with mentors at
institutions greater than 100 miles from the applicant institution will be
considered, but must be justified strongly and outlined clearly in the
application.  Plans for intensive training of the applicant and their
student(s) during the summer period (2 - 3 months) as well as during the
academic year should be developed with the mentor.

The commitment of the mentor and the mentor's departmental chair to both the
summer and academic year training periods must be documented in the
application.  The mentor must provide an annual evaluation of the faculty
member's career development.  This evaluation is to be included as part of the
Application for Continuation Grant if an award is made.

D. Student Research Assistants

Student research assistants are underrepresented minority students enrolled at
the applicant (minority) institution who are : 1) citizens of the United
States, noncitizen nationals, or permanent residents at the time of
application; 2) have declared a major or concentration in a biomedical or
behavioral science; 3) have at least an overall B grade point average; 4) have
the potential and desire to pursue an advanced degree in the biomedical or
behavioral sciences; and 5) wish to receive research training in areas
relevant to cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, or sleep disorders
research.  At least one and a maximum of two students may participate on the
project simultaneously as research assistants.  Students are expected to
participate in the program for a minimum of two years.

The candidate should identify the student(s) proposed for the first two-year
period and provide a brief summary of their interest in behavioral and/or
biomedical science and any previous laboratory experience.  The candidate
should describe how (s)he will foster student interest in graduate school in
behavioral or biomedical research and a career in scientific research in areas
related to heart, lung, blood, or sleep disorders.

For the purpose of this announcement, underrepresented minority students are
defined as individuals belonging to a particular ethnic or racial group that
has been determined by the applicant institution to be underrepresented in
biomedical or behavioral research.  Nationally, NHLBI considers Black,
Hispanic, Native  American, and Pacific Islander students to be
underrepresented.

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

This RFA will use the NHLBI Minority Institution Faculty Mentored Research
Scientist Development Award (K01) mechanism of support.  However, specific
application instructions have been modified to reflect "JUST-IN-TIME"
streamlining efforts implemented by NIH in the NIH GUIDE FOR GRANTS AND
CONTRACTS, Vol. 25, No. 10, March 29.  This process allows applicants to
submit certain information only when there is a possibility for an award.  It
is anticipated that these changes will reduce the administrative burden for
the applicants, applicant institutions, reviewers, and Institute staff.

For this RFA, no detailed budget is required.  However, total direct costs for
all years must be provided in addition to the name, role on project, percent
effort, and narrative justification for all project personnel.  Instructions
for completing the Biographical Sketch have also been modified.  In addition,
Other Support information for the applicant is not required as part of the
initial application.  However, Other Support information is required for the
mentor and co-mentor.  If there is a possibility for an award, necessary
budget, Other Support information will be requested by NHLBI staff following
the initial review.  The Application Procedures section of this RFA provides
specific details of modifications to standard PHS 398 application kit
instructions.

FUNDS AVAILABLE

The estimated funds (total costs) available for the first year of support for
the entire program is expected to be $400,000 in fiscal year 2000.  The actual
amount may vary, depending on the response to the RFA and availability of
funds.  Three new awards are anticipated.

BACKGROUND

Measurements of health status indicate that Americans today are, on the whole,
healthier than at any other time in our history.  Life expectancy has
increased while infant mortality statistics indicate that fewer infants are
dying at birth or in the first few months of life.  Diseases that disabled or
killed at the start of the century have virtually disappeared.  In spite of
this national trend toward better health, there is a continuing disparity in
the burden of death and illness experienced by Blacks and other minority
Americans.  This segment of the population continues to be over represented
among those in poor health and has remarkably higher death rates from
cardiovascular, pulmonary, and hematologic diseases.

Despite a recent decline in the death rate from coronary heart disease,
cardiovascular disease continues to be the number one cause of death in the
United States, accounting for almost one million deaths annually.  An
estimated 68 million Americans are estimated to have diseases of the heart and
blood vessels, resulting in a large burden of acute and chronic illness and
disability.  Heart and blood vessel diseases cost the economy tens of billions
of dollars per year in lost wages, reduced productivity, and expenses for
medical care.

Diseases of the lung also constitute a major national health problem.  About
one in every five persons has some chronic respiratory problem resulting in an
annual estimated cost to the nation of over $29 billion.  In the newborn, the
most common cause of death is neonatal respiratory distress syndrome (RDS). 
Respiratory failure during the neonatal period may be implicated in
development of adult respiratory disease as well.  Of the adult respiratory
diseases, emphysema and chronic bronchitis are major causes of death. 
Fibrotic and immunologic lung diseases are serious causes of lung problems in
the young adult.  Asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis represent
particularly pressing health problems, affecting an estimated 17 million
Americans.  Moreover, the death rate and prevalence of these conditions have
increased at an alarming rate over the past 15 years.  As a disabling disease,
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a leading cause of worker retirement
on Social Security disability payments.

Disorders of the blood, including congenital or acquired disorders or
deficiencies, are another major causes of death and disability in the United
States.  Disorders of the blood affect not only the blood itself, but the
tissues and organs through which it flows.  Recent research findings have
revealed the widespread involvement of thrombosis in the pathology of numerous
disorders, including the development of atherosclerosis and coronary
thrombosis.  Aggressive therapy for cancer has resulted in the increased
susceptibility of patients to bleeding disorders and has increased the demand
for blood products for therapeutic purposes.  A significant segment of the
population has inherited blood disorders, such as sickle cell disease,
hemophilia, or Cooley's anemia, which require life-long hematologic attention
and blood product support.

Chronic disorders of sleep affect an estimated 40 million Americans.  Sleep
problems affect men and women of every age, race, and socioeconomic class. 
Many people are unaware of their illness and are not receiving adequate
treatment.  About 20 million adults have chronic insomnia.  Sleep apnea, a
cessation of breathing during sleep, is the second most common sleep disorder. 
It affects about 12 million Americans.  Other startling statistics include the
following:  about 25 percent of American children aged 1 to 5 have a sleep
disturbance; an estimated 250,000 people suffer from narcolepsy; more than 50
percent of Americans aged 65 and older have a sleep problem; and disturbed
sleep is among the reasons most frequently cited by caretakers for
institutionalization of older Americans.  Each year, sleep disorders, sleep
deprivation, and daytime sleepiness contribute a substantial burden to
national health care.  Additional costs to society for such consequences as
lost worker productivity, accidents, and the contribution of sleep disorders
to other serious health problems such as heart disease and stroke are just
being identified and studied.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) continues its commitment
to address these important medical challenges.  One way of meeting these
challenges is to increase the pool of well trained investigators, especially
in minority groups where the proportion of biomedical investigators is
strikingly lower than the percentage of minority U.S. citizens.  While 12
percent of the population is Black, less than 0.25 percent of persons holding
a Ph.D. in science are Black.  The figures are even lower for Black Ph.D.s in
the biomedical sciences.  Furthermore, the number of doctorates, both M.D.s
and Ph.D.s, in other ethnic minority groups (such as American Indians or
Hispanics) is proportionally lower than for Blacks.  Vigorous recruitment is
underway throughout the government, academic institutions, hospitals, research
institutions, and industry.

The Minority Institution Mentored Research Scientist Development Award is
designed to address this critical need by increasing the research and academic
capabilities of faculty members at minority schools.  In doing so, the faculty
will become more able to prepare and direct their students to pursue advanced
degrees and ultimately careers in biomedical and behavioral research thus
increasing the pool of well trained biomedical and behavioral investigators in
cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, and sleep disorders research.  Because
it is important to sustain the faculty's research program following the
initial period, recipients may reapply for an additional five year period of
support.  More than one applicant from each institution may apply.  Former
awardees within three years of the end of their award may also apply for the
additional five year period.  At the end of the period of support, it is
anticipated that the applicant will be prepared to apply for other types of
NIH support such as the Research Project Grant (R01), Academic Research
Enhancement Award (AREA, R15), or Minority Biomedical Research Support Program
(MBRS, S06.)

PROVISIONS OF THE AWARD

Salary

The awardee will receive salary support up to a maximum of $75,000 plus fringe
benefits per year for five years.  All funds must be used to support the
awardee.  The level of support will be based upon the candidate's actual
salary and must be consistent with the established salary structure of the
minority institution for persons of equivalent qualifications, experience, and
rank.  The actual salary level will be determined by the proportion of effort
devoted to this program.  Awardees must commit 100 percent of effort during
summer and/or off-quarter periods and at least 25 percent of effort during the
academic year.  Supplementation of the awardee's salary from non-Federal
sources is permissible.  Supplementation of the awardee's salary from other
Federal funds is not allowed unless explicitly authorized by both the program
from which funds are derived and the NHLBI.  In no case may other NIH funds be
used to supplement salary support of the awardee.

In addition to salary support for the candidate, support for up to 5 percent
of the mentor's salary during the summer experience may also be requested.  If
funds are to be transferred to the mentor's institution for the mentor's
salary, arrangements for the transfer of funds and the conduct of activities
should be formalized in a subcontract agreement with the mentor's institution. 
A letter of intent from each institution must be submitted with the
application.

A maximum of $8.50 per hour plus fringe benefits may be requested for the
student research assistant(s).  Level of support and hours worked during the
academic year should reflect the institution's policy for student work-study
programs.  Students must commit 100% effort during the summer and off-quarter
periods and at least 25% effort during the academic year.  Students are
expected to participate in the program for a minimum of two years.  Students
must be U.S. citizens or non-citizen nationals, or must have been lawfully
admitted to the United States for permanent residence (i.e. in possession of a
currently valid Alien Registration Receipt Card I-551 or other legal
verification of such status.)

Research Support

Up to $36,000 per year beyond that requested for the candidate's, mentor's,
and students' salaries will be provided for research support.  Details
regarding the apportionment of these funds between the minority institution
and the mentor's institution must be worked out with the mentor and agreed to
by representatives of both institutions.  A statement of agreement must be
provided in the application.  See the PHS 398 for information on
Consortium/Contractual Agreements.

These research support funds may be used for:

o  Personnel: support for technical personnel;

o  Equipment: limited to specialized research equipment essential to the
proposed program; in accordance with PHS policy, title to such equipment will
vest with the grantee institution;

o  Supplies: consumable supplies essential to the proposed program;

o  Travel:  domestic travel for the awardee that is essential to the proposed
program; and

o  Other:  publication costs, computer costs, or other costs necessary for the
research program.

Student Housing and Travel

The applicant institution is encouraged to provide no-cost housing and meals
to the students during the summer or off-quarter periods if the training will
be provided at a local institution, as a commitment to the student's
development and as an incentive to participate in the program.  If training is
not at a local institution, up to $500 per month per student during the summer
only may be requested for housing.  Funds to allow the student(s) to travel to
a scientific meeting should also be requested.

Indirect Costs

Facilities and administrative (indirect) costs will be provided at a rate of 8
percent of the total direct costs of each award, exclusive of equipment.  The
indirect cost rate on a subcontract with the mentor's institution may not
exceed 8 percent.

INCLUSION OF WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN STUDY POPULATIONS

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 is provided that inclusion is
inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or 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 15508-14513) and in
the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 23, No. 11, March 18, 1994,
available at the following URL address:
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/not94-100.html

NIH POLICY AND GUIDELINES ON THE INCLUSION OF CHILDREN AS PARTICIPANTS IN
RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN SUBJECTS

It is the policy of NIH that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 21)
must be included in all human subjects research conducted or supported by the
NIH unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them.  This
policy applies to all initial (type 1) applications submitted for receipt
dates after October 1, 1998.

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the
"NIH Policy and Guidelines on the Inclusion of Children as Participants in
Research Involving Human Subjects" that was published in the NIH Guide for
Grants and Contracts, March 6, 1998, and is available at the following URL
address: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/not98-024.html

LETTER OF INTENT

Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by July 1, 1999, a letter of
intent that includes the name, address, and telephone number of the Principal
Investigator, 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 allows NHLBI 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. C. James Scheirer at the address listed under
APPLICATION PROCEDURES.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

The research grant application Form PHS 398 (Rev. 4/98) is to be used in
applying for these grants.  This form is available at the applicant
institution's office of sponsored research.  An application may also be
obtained from the Division of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources,
National Institutes of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910, Bethesda,
Maryland, 20892-7910, telephone 301/435-0714, e-mail: grantsinfo@nih.gov; and
at the following URL address:
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html

When submitting the application, identify the NHLBI Minority Institution
Faculty Mentored Research Scientist Development Award on the face page.

The RFA label available in the PHS 398 application form must be affixed to the
bottom of the face page of the application.  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.  In addition, the RFA title and number
(HL-99-019) must be typed on line 2 of the face page of the application form
and on the RFA label and the YES box must be marked.

The sample RFA label available at: 
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/label-bk.pdf has been modified to
allow for this change.  Please note this is in pdf format.

Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application and three signed
photocopies in one package 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, send two additional copies of the application  to:

Dr. C. James Scheirer
Division of Extramural Affairs
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7924
Bethesda, MD  20892-7924
Telephone:  (301) 435-0266
FAX:  (301) 480-3541
Email:  js110j@nih.gov

It is important to send these two copies at the same time as the original and
three copies are sent to the Center for Scientific Review (CSR).  These copies
are used to identify conflicts and help ensure the appropriate and timely
review of the applications.

Applications must be received by August 26, 1999.  If an application is
received after that date, it will be returned to the applicant without review. 
The CSR will not accept any application in response to this RFA that is
essentially the same as one currently pending initial review, unless the
applicant withdraws the pending application.  The CSR will not accept any
application that is essentially the same as one already reviewed.  This does
not preclude the submission of substantial revisions of the applications
already reviewed, but such applications must include an introduction
addressing the previous critique.

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Upon receipt, applications will be reviewed for completeness by the Center for
Scientific Review and responsiveness by the NHLBI.  Incomplete and/or non-
responsive applications will be returned to the applicant without further
consideration.  Applications that are complete and responsive to the RFA will
be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by a Special Emphasis Panel in
the Division of Extramural Affairs, NHLBI, in accordance with the review
criteria stated below.  As part of the initial merit review, a process may be
used by the initial review group in which applications 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 National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council.

Review Criteria

The following criteria will be considered in the evaluation of the proposed
Minority Institution Faculty Mentored Research Scientist Development Award
program:

Candidate -- The candidate's overall competence as demonstrated by academic
record and research performance, potential for a career as an independent
researcher, and commitment toward pursuit of an academic research career and
toward the enhancement of the scientific program at the minority institution.

Career Development Plan -- The adequacy of the research career development
plan, based on the candidate's past research experience, training, and career
goals as demonstrated by such things as maintenance of a research laboratory,
attendance at scientific meetings, and participation in journal clubs and
research seminars.

Research Project -- Scientific merit of the proposed research project and its
appropriateness as a vehicle for developing the candidate's research skills.

Training Students -- The candidate's record of and an outline of future plans
for involving students in research and guiding them to science graduate
programs and careers in academic biomedical and behavioral research.

Mentor(s) -- The mentor's accomplishments in the scientific research area(s)
proposed, experience and record in training investigators, and commitment for
the duration of a candidate's research development.  A curriculum vitae with
relevant publications and a list of current and pending research support must
be included for all sponsors.  Mentors should also include a list of current
and past research trainees (not more than the last 10 years) with information
on their current positions.

Environment -- The applicant institution's ability to provide adequate
facilities, resources, and opportunities necessary for the candidate's
training, and the institutional commitment to the candidate.  If different
from the applicant institution, the quality and extent of interaction of the
faculty in the basic and clinical sciences, and the quality of the research
and research training programs at the mentor's institution.

Institutional commitment -- The institution's commitment to the development of
the candidate.

Other Considerations -- The personnel category will be reviewed for
appropriate staffing based on the requested percent effort and justification
provided.

Because the research training environment provides a powerful context in which
to promote responsible research practices, all competing applications must
include a description of formal or informal activities or instruction related
to the responsible conduct of research that will be incorporated into the
proposed research training program.

Award Criteria

The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

o Scientific, technical, and career development merit of the application as
determined by peer review;

o Availability of funds; and

o Program balance among the research areas of the announcement.

INQUIRIES

Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to contact NHLBI staff prior to
preparation of an  application.

Joyce I. Creamer, M.B.A.
Division of Blood Diseases and Resources
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7952
Bethesda, MD  20892-7952
Telephone:  (301) 435-0064
FAX:  (301) 480-0867
Email:  CreamerJ@gwgate.nhlbi.nih.gov

For fiscal and administrative matters, please contact:

Marie Willett
Division of Extramural Affairs
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7926
Bethesda, MD  20892-7926
Telephone:  (301) 435-0144
FAX:  (301) 480-3310
Email:  marie_willett@nih.gov

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance,
Numbers 93.233, 93.837, 93.838, and 93.839.  Awards are made under the
authority 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 grant policies and Federal Regulations at 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Part
74.  This program is not subject to the intergovernmental review requirements
of Executive Order 12372 or a 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 routine 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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