Notice of Availability of Administrative Supplements to Enable Continuity of Research Experiences of Maternal Fetal Medicine and Neonatal-Perinatal Physicians During Fellowship Training and Early Academic Career

Notice Number: NOT-HD-11-022

Key Dates

Release Date:  September 2, 2011

Related Announcements


Issued by

Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)


The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) announces an administrative supplement program to provide additional funds to Neonatal Research Network (NRN) and the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Units (MFMU) Network (U10) grants to support advanced research experiences of exceptional individuals early in their research careers in the field of maternal fetal medicine or neonatology.  The purpose of this program is to provide opportunities for clinically trained individuals to continue to conduct research and to enhance their research skill set during the years of fellowship or early academic career (within 5 years of completion of maternal fetal medicine or neonatal-perinatal medicine fellowship training). 

Support through this administrative supplement program is expected to enhance the scientific and professional development of the participating individuals, speed their transition to research independence as clinical investigators, and contribute to scientific knowledge that advances the mission of the Maternal Fetal Medicine Units and Neonatal Research Networks.

Research Opportunity

The goal of this program is to help physician-investigators move more efficiently and effectively from the period of clinical training to the next stage of their research careers by supporting focused, protected research time during fellowship or early academic career.  The proposed research experience must be an integral part of the approved, ongoing research of the parent grant and must have the potential to contribute significantly to the candidate’s research career. 

Applications are expected to summarize:

  • The candidate’s supplemental research project
  • A plan that is designed to enhance his/her research skills, scientific knowledge, and related professional skills including plans for subsequent funding applications that would help maintain the candidate’s research momentum. 

To ensure flexibility of research opportunities, the specific plan and scope of the research experience may vary depending on such factors as the nature of the parent grant, the candidate’s technical skill set and goals, and the candidate’s available effort.  Applications are strongly encouraged to document the Principal Investigator’s commitment to provide appropriate guidance and supervision of the candidate.

Eligible Applicants

Recipients of NICHD-supported U10 Neonatal Research Network (NRN) and/or Maternal Fetal Medicine Units (MFMU) Network Cooperative Agreement awards are eligible to submit an application in response to this Notice. This includes institutions that received a new award or competing continuation award and are actively recruiting into ongoing clinical studies and trials in the 2011-2016 grant cycle of each network.  The eligible institutions may submit one application per network from the site PD/PI on behalf of the candidate.  Up to one award for the MFMU and one award for the NRN for an individual site will be made. The research proposed in the supplement must be within the general scope of the peer-reviewed activities and aims of the parent grant.

At the time of a supplemental award, the parent grant must have support remaining for a reasonable period (usually two years or more).

Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact the Scientific/Research Contact listed at the end of this Notice to discuss a potential supplement application.

Eligible Candidates

This supplement will support specialized study for individuals with a health professional doctoral degree who are committed to a career in laboratory or clinical based research in maternal fetal medicine or neonatal perinatal medicine. Candidates must demonstrate the potential to develop into independent investigators. The supplement supports a two- to three-year period of supervised research experience that may integrate didactic studies with laboratory or clinically based patient related research. 

Candidates must meet the following eligibility criteria at the time of application:

1)    Must be a citizen or a non-citizen national of the United States or have been lawfully admitted for permanent residence;

2)    Must have graduated from an M.D. or D.O. program;

3)    Must currently be in good standing in an ACGME-accredited clinical fellowship program or have an academic appointment in neonatal or maternal fetal medicine at the instructor or assistant professor level; and

4)    Must be able to commit no less than 6 person-months (50% of full-time professional effort) to the proposed research experience.

The Department Chair, Division or Section Chair or Fellowship Training Director must document that the research activities and associated time commitment proposed in the supplemental application will be supported by the institution and will not adversely affect the candidate’s board eligibility or prolong the period of clinical fellowship, as appropriate. 

Applicant institutions are encouraged to identify individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities for support under this supplement program.

IMPORTANT:  The research proposed by the NIH grantee in the supplement application must be within the original scope of the NIH-supported grant project.  The funding mechanism being used to support this program, administrative supplements, can be used to cover cost increases that are associated with achieving certain new research objectives as long as they are within the original scope of the project.  Any cost increases need to result from making modifications to the project in order to take advantage of opportunities that would increase the value of the project consistent with its originally approved objectives and purposes.

Selection Factors

Administrative supplement requests will be reviewed at NICHD by Program and Grants Management Staff. 

Selection factors will include the following:

  • Scientific merit of the proposed research experience;
  • Quality of candidate’s academic and clinical training record as well as potential for an independent research career conducting maternal fetal medicine or neonatal-perinatal research;
  • Potential for development into an independent investigator;
  • Commitment to a research career;
  • Relevance of the proposed activities to the funded (parent) grant and the mission and research priorities of the Pregnancy and Perinatology Branch at NICHD;

Merit and appropriateness of the proposed research experience plan including evidence that the proposed activities are feasible within the context of fellowship and early faculty appointment, and that sufficient institutional commitment exists for the proposed research experience.

Budget and Funding Information

Applications will be accepted until December 19, 2011 for consideration for funding, although earlier submission is strongly encouraged.  All applications should be preceded by consultation with NICHD Program staff (see Inquiries section below) to discuss the application process and determine availability of funds. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

NICHD intends to commit $300,000 in FY2012 to fund up to two awards per network.  Budgets are limited to direct costs of $50,000 per year for up to three years.  Requested amounts must reflect actual needs of the proposed project.

The NICHD will provide salary support for the candidate in addition to other justified expenses, such as travel and supplies, to enable the candidate to participate fully in the proposed research experience.  The requested salary and fringe benefits must be in accordance with the salary structure of the grantee institution for individuals in comparable positions, consistent with the level of effort. 

An award issued under this Notice is contingent upon adequate progress on the parent grant during the current project period, the availability of funds, and the receipt of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.


In non-competing continuation applications (using PHS Form 2590), the Progress Report and budget for the supplement must be clearly delineated from the Progress Report and budget for the parent grant.  The Progress Report should describe the research activities of the MD fellow or faculty member during the prior budget period even if support for future years is not requested.  If future support is requested, plans for the supplement research activities during the next budget period should be described. Continuation of supplemental support in the remaining years of the grant’s competitive segment will depend on satisfactory review by the NICHD of progress for the parent grant and the supplement project, the proposed research and other activities for the next budget period, and the appropriateness of the proposed budget for the proposed effort.  A final supplement report is due no later than 90 days after the end of the supplemental award.

How To Apply

Applications will be accepted until December 19, 2011 for consideration for funding beginning April 1, 2012, although earlier submission is strongly encouraged.   

Requests under this Notice should be prepared using PHS 398 forms (available at The request must be signed by the authorized Business Official. 


Please direct all inquiries to:

Scientific/Research Contact:

Rosemary D. Higgins, MD
Pregnancy and Perinatology Branch
6100 Executive Blvd, 4B03B, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD 20892-7510
Telephone 301-435-7909

Grants Management Contact:

Grace Poe
Grants Management Branch
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
6100 Executive Boulevard, 8A, MSC 7510
Bethesda, MD 20892-7510
Telephone: 301-435-7011