Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): Secondary Analysis of Existing Datasets for Advancing Immune-mediated and Infectious Disease Research
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:

February 12, 2021

First Available Due Date:
June 16, 2021
Expiration Date:
May 08, 2024

Related Announcements

PA-20-195 - NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Issued by

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)


This Notice of Special Interest (NOSI) is to support projects that use data, alone or in combination, to address scientific questions and knowledge gaps in basic or clinical research in immune-mediated and infectious diseases.


NIAID has invested in the generation of data and data resources to better inform understanding of risk for immune-mediated and infectious diseases, their progression, treatment, and prevention. These data are available through various NIAID and NIH funded repositories, knowledgebases, as well as other publicly available data resources (a list of exemplar resources is available at

Many of these data have potential utility beyond the specific hypotheses and questions for which they were originally generated. Their reuse fosters a research paradigm that leverages data to generate and/or refine hypotheses prior to experimental design. Moreover, further investigation of existing data sets, alone or in combination with other data, also provides opportunities to answer novel research questions at relatively low cost and justifies the value of investments made by NIAID/NIH and other funders in the repositories and knowledgebases for research use. The resulting studies might also reveal any barriers to data reuse and help identify tools needed and/or metadata that could be collected that will better enable data reuse by the broader community.

Principles of data sharing which state that data should be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Re-usable (FAIR) form the premise of the NIH Strategic Plan for Data Science. NIAID is committed to the management and sharing of data in alignment with these principles and to exploring how current NIAID repositories, knowledgebases, tools and other resources may need to be re-configured to coexist in a truly interoperable and usable research data ecosystem.

Research Objectives

This NOSI invites applications proposing innovative informatics/data science projects that seek to answer novel scientific questions and address knowledge gaps in basic, translational and clinical, immune-mediated and infectious diseases by using data in repositories and knowledgebases. The projects may combine data from a variety of repositories and/or knowledgebases funded by NIAID in addition to other sources, including controlled-access and private user-generated data. The research focus areas of the applications must include infectious diseases, emerging infections, basic immunology or immune-mediated disease (i.e. allergy, autoimmunity, or immune reactions associated with transplantation). AIDS applications can additionally propose research using existing datasets to examine the interaction of mental health and mental health comorbidities, stigma, and other social behavioral determinants of health on HIV-related outcomes.

Applications submitted in response to this NOSI MUST:

  • Utilize at least ONE existing dataset generated by NIAID funded research projects/programs and/or existing data available in repositories or knowledgebases funded by NIAID at the time the application is submitted
  • Propose a mechanism to, and share results generated from analysis of existing data, tools associated with the analysis, and other digital assets adhering to FAIR principles
  • Credit all contributors including the data generators

Relevant topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Generate or test new hypothesis beyond the scope or interest of the original studies from which the data was initially generated
  • Innovative analyses of novel combinations or integration of existing datasets
  • Reanalysis or integration of existing NIAID funded project datasets using alternate/new approaches or to test specific questions or validate new analytical approaches
  • Analysis and meta-analysis of existing data sets to inform designs of future clinical trials
  • Analysis of heterogeneous data sets
  • Enhancement of information in the data resources to enable cross-database analysis of NIAID funded data resources

Applications will be considered non-responsive to this NOSI if the applications:

  • Propose to collect/generate new data even if it is to enhance the power of current or existing datasets
  • Propose only using/analyzing data generated by the applicant(s) from their own previous projects
  • Propose non-HIV related projects for NIMH consideration

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Scientific/Research staff listed below to ensure proposed projects are within the scope of this NOSI Initiative.

Application and Submission Information

This notice applies to due dates on or after June 16, 2021 and subsequent receipt dates through May 7, 2024.

Submit applications for this initiative using one of the following funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) or any reissues of these announcement through the expiration date of this notice.

  • PA-20-195 - NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and the funding opportunity announcement used for submission must be followed, with the following additions:

  • For funding consideration, applicants must include NOT-AI-21-011 (without quotation marks) in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4B) of the SF424 R&R form. Applications without this information in box 4B will not be considered for this initiative.

Although NIMH is not listed as a Participating Organization in all the FOAs listed above, applications for this initiative will be accepted.

Applications nonresponsive to terms of this NOSI will be withdrawn from consideration for this initiative.


Please direct all inquiries to the contacts in Section VII of the listed funding opportunity announcements with the following additions/substitutions:

Scientific/Research Contact(s)

Office of Data Science and Emerging Technologies (ODSET)
National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

Lori A.J. Scott-Sheldon, Ph.D.
Division of AIDS Research
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Telephone: 301-792-2309

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