Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Epigenetic Analysis of Aging as a Risk Factor for Chronic Disease and Degenerative Conditions (U34)

Notice Number: NOT-AG-14-012

Key Dates
Release Date: March 21, 2014

Related Announcements

Issued by
National Institute on Aging (NIA)


The National Institute on Aging intends to promote a new initiative by publishing a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications for research-planning grants on biological mechanisms that underlie aging-as-a-risk factor for chronic diseases and degenerative conditions. The biological mechanisms that are the focus of this FOA are epigenetic modifications.

This Notice is being provided to allow potential applicants sufficient time to develop meaningful collaborations and responsive projects.

The FOA is expected to be published in Spring 2014 with an expected application due date in Fall 2014.

This FOA will utilize the U34 Activity Code. Details of the planned FOA are provided below.

Research Initiative Details

This Notice encourages investigators with expertise and insights into this area of geroscience to begin to consider applying for this new FOA.

This initiative is based on the observation that age is the major risk factor for most chronic diseases and degenerative conditions in adults. These planning grants would lay the groundwork to make a leap from this observation - aging is the major risk factor - to definable biology that could explain that risk. Taking epigenetics as quantifiable in human samples, the focus is on "epigenetics of the risk" and not "epigenetics of aging" or "epigenetics of disease." To plan successfully for such research, applicants would assemble a multidisciplinary team of investigators to develop and plan collaborations that aim to understand epigenetic mechanisms of aging-as-a-risk-factor for chronic diseases or degenerative conditions. The intended outcomes would be an evaluation of the technical requirements, types of epigenetic data, clinical parameters and candidate human subjects cohorts or populations that would lead to identification of aging-specific epigenetic features that contribute to the increased risk of developing diverse chronic diseases or degenerative conditions. Consideration should be given to the following areas: identification of the best available human cohorts based on clinical definitions and laboratory tests, and population composition for sex, ethnicity and similar epidemiological parameters; suitable tissue samples (e.g., blood, muscle, etc.); epigenetic studies of diseases and/or degenerative conditions; pilot experiments using existing data from published reports on epigenetics and aging. The team of these multidisciplinary investigators would combine expertise in aging biology, epigenetics, bioinformatics, statistics, epidemiology, clinical diagnosis, and geriatrics will be encouraged.



Please direct all inquiries to:

Ronald A. Kohanski, Ph.D.
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
Telephone: 301-496-6402