Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Research Grants for the Metabolic Dysregulation and Cancer Risk Program: a Transdisciplinary Approach to Obesity-Associated Research (U01 Clinical Trial Optional)
Notice Number:

Key Dates

Release Date:
February 19, 2021
Estimated Publication Date of Funding Opportunity Announcement:
May 01, 2021
First Estimated Application Due Date:
October 01, 2021
Earliest Estimated Award Date:
July 01, 2022
Earliest Estimated Start Date:
September 01, 2022
Related Announcements

NOT-CA-21-038 - Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Coordinating Center for the Metabolic Dysregulation and Cancer Risk Program: a Transdisciplinary Approach to Obesity-associated Research (U01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

Issued by

National Cancer Institute (NCI)


The National Cancer Institute (NCI) intends to publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) as a Request for Applications (RFA) to solicit applications that will support transdisciplinary research projects on the dynamics and underlying mechanisms that link obesity, metabolic dysregulation, and increased cancer risk.

This Notice of Intent to Publish (NOITP) is being provided to allow potential applicants time to develop responsive projects and meaningful collaborations.

This RFA and its companion RFA for a Coordinating Center (see NOT-CA-21-038) are expected to be published in the Summer of 2021 with expected application due dates in the Fall of 2021. Anticipated award dates will be Summer of 2022.

The intended RFA will utilize the U01 Cooperative Agreement mechanism. Details of the planned RFA are provided below.

Research Initiative Details

The obesity-cancer link is a pressing concern due to the escalating prevalence of obesity. Obesity can be conceptually viewed as a “disease-susceptible state” and, of relevance, a “metabolically dysregulated state". This state of disease predisposition has the potential to progress to cancer and other chronic pathologies. The goal of this FOA is to identify tangible mechanistic/etiologic pathway(s) that link obesity-related metabolic dysregulation with cancer risk to inform cancer prevention strategies.

Responsive applicants are strongly encouraged to propose research that uses an observational or interventional study to emphasize a primary focus on research in humans. Proposed experimental models (e.g., animal models) are permitted but should include human samples. Research project grants should address one or more of the following main research objectives:

(1) investigate the mechanistic role of metabolic dysregulation underpinning the link between obesity and cancer risk;

(2) characterize an altered metabolic profile (e.g., metabolic-related markers) that identifies at-risk individuals; and

(3) test interventions designed to modify obesity-associated metabolic pathways to decrease cancer risk.

The RFA intends to foster transdisciplinary research that cuts across different scientific domains to allow investigators from multiple disciplines to come together to advance discovery, translation of current knowledge or emerging findings, and ultimately extend our understanding on the mechanisms linking metabolic dysregulation and obesity-associated cancer risk. A consortium will be established and governed by a steering committee comprised of funded investigators to this intended RFA, the coordinating center, and NCI program staff. Investigators of funded individual research projects will be expected to participate in this consortium, engage in efforts to optimize synergy across projects, and to collaborate in pilot projects that may emerge within the consortium.

This Notice, therefore, encourages investigators with a research team with diversity in scientific expertise and established experience working with scientists from multiple disciplines (e.g., basic science, epidemiology, oncology, immunology, and intervention/prevention) to develop responsive proposals. Interested investigators are strongly encouraged to contact the designated NCI Program Director for further inquiries.

Funding Information
Estimated Total Funding

Up to $7.0 million in Fiscal Year 2022

Expected Number of Awards


Estimated Award Ceiling


Primary CFDA Numbers


Anticipated Eligible Organizations
Public/State Controlled Institution of Higher Education
Private Institution of Higher Education
Nonprofit with 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institution of Higher Education)
Small Business
For-Profit Organization (Other than Small Business)
Eligible Agencies of the Federal Government
Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entity (Foreign Organization)

Applications are not being solicited at this time. 


Please direct all inquiries to:

For general inquiries and questions related to epidemiology

Tram Kim Lam, Ph.D., MPH

Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences

National Cancer Institute (NCI)



For inquiries related to cancer biology

Phillip J. Daschner, Ph.D.
Division of Cancer Biology
National Cancer Institute (NCI)

For inquiries related to cancer prevention

Edward Sauter, MD, PhD.
Division of Cancer Prevention
National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
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