Update to PA-06-094, NLM Research Grants in Biomedical Informatics and Bioinformatics: Addition of the Option to Include Multiple Principal Investigators

Notice Number: NOT-LM-06-004

Key Dates
Release Date: February 28, 2006

Issued by
National Library of Medicine (NLM), (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/)

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) announces its participation in a pilot implementation of an NIH-wide initiative to allow multiple principal investigators (PIs) to be named on a research grant application submitted in response to NLM Research Grants in Biomedical Informatics and Bioinformatics (R01)  (see https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-06-094.html).
Beginning June 1, 2006, in addition to the usual single PI applications, NLM also will accept multiple PI applications for projects submitted in response to PA 06-094.  Note, this feature is a part of a pilot as described at https://grants.nih.gov/grants/multi_pi/index.htm.   Applications involving multiple PIs are not yet available to all applicants for NIH support.  During this pilot, multiple PIs may be within a single institution or at different institutions. For multiple PI applications that involve multiple organizations, the applicant may propose a subcontract arrangement, or may request linked awards, as described below.

This notice serves to modify the previously released PA 06-094, allowing multiple PIs and providing instructions for multiple PI applications. This Notice applies only to PA 06-094, NLM Research Grants in Biomedical Informatics and Bioinformatics (R01).  Both new and competing continuation applications are permitted to identify more than one PI. 


NLM believes that permitting multiple principal investigators will foster interdisciplinary and team science. If an award is made to a multiple PI grant, each named PI will be listed on the Notice of Grant Award, and each will be listed in the NIH CRISP database of federally-funded research (http://crisp.cit.nih.gov).  All named PIs will have access to summary statements and review status information through the NIH eRA Commons. Additional information on the implementation plans and policies and procedures to formally allow more than one PI on individual research projects can be found at https://grants.nih.gov/grants/multi_pi.  All PIs must be registered in the eRA Commons prior to the submission of the application (see http://era.nih.gov/ElectronicReceipt/preparing.htm for instructions).

Deciding whether to apply for a single or multiple PI grant is the responsibility of the investigators and applicant organizations and should be determined by the scientific goals of the project. Applications for multiple PI grants will require additional information, as outlined in the instructions below, and the NIH review criteria for approach and investigator will be modified as indicated below. Inclusion of a weak or inappropriate PI can have a negative effect on the review of an application.
Multiple PIs may be located at the same institution or at different institutions.  If all PIs are at the same institution, the PIs and the applicant institution may request budget apportionment among the PIs on a Just-in-Time basis upon notification by NLM.  If allocation is requested, it will be included in a footnote to the Notice of Grant Award.  For multiple PIs located at different institutions, a subcontract arrangement or linked awards are possible options as described in special instructions below.

Definition of Principal Investigator:
The individual(s) designated by the applicant organization to have the appropriate level of authority and responsibility to direct the project or program supported by the award. The applicant organization may designate multiple individuals as principal investigators who share the authority and responsibility for leading and directing the project, intellectually and logistically.  Each principal investigator is responsible and accountable to the grantee organization, or, as appropriate, to a collaborating organization, for the proper conduct of the project or program, including the submission of all required reports.

Special Instructions for Applications with Multiple PIs:

When multiple PIs are proposed, NIH requires one PI to be designated as the contact PI, who will be responsible for all communication between the PIs and the NIH, for assembling the application materials outlined below, and for coordinating progress reports for the project. The contact PI must meet all eligibility requirements for PI status in the same way as other PIs, but has no other special roles or responsibilities within the project team beyond those mentioned above. The application should be submitted with a cover letter that lists the contact PI, all other PIs, their institutions, and the project title.

PIs at the Same Institution:
When multiple PIs are located at the same institution, the usual application guidelines should be followed with these additions:

PIs at More than One Institution:
When multiple institutions are involved, PIs and their institutions may request linked awards or they may designate one institution as the lead organization and request funding for the other institution(s) via subcontract(s) to be administered by the lead institution. The application from Contact PI’s organization should include comprehensive information for all participating organizations and sites, as described below. Those seeking a subcontract arrangement should follow the PHS 398 instructions for consortium/subcontract applications, plus additional instructions listed below. In addition to the usual information required for subcontract arrangements, a linked award requires a Face page, Description, Performance Sites, Key Personnel, budget page(s), budget justification, resources and environment, and checklist for each participating organization.

REVIEW CRITERIA for all Multiple PI Applications

There will be no additional review criteria for multiple PI applications.  The existing NIH review criteria will be used, with the added language for multiple PI applications as indicated in bold font below:

Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge or clinical practice be advanced? What will be the effect of these studies on the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field? 

Approach: Are the conceptual or clinical framework, design, methods, and analyses adequately developed, well-integrated, well-reasoned, and appropriate to the aims of the project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider alternative tactics?  For applications designating multiple PIs, does the Leadership Plan ensure that there will be sufficient coordination and communication among the PIs?  Are the administrative plans for the management of the research project appropriate, including plans for resolving conflicts?

 Innovation: Is the project original and innovative? For example: Does the project challenge existing paradigms or clinical practice; address an innovative hypothesis or critical barrier to progress in the field? Does the project develop or employ novel concepts, approaches or methodologies, tools, or technologies for this area?

Investigators: Are the principal investigator(s) and key personnel appropriately trained and well suited to carry out this work? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level(s) of the principal investigator(s) and other researchers? Do the principal investigator(s) and investigative team bring complementary and integrated expertise to the project (if applicable)?

Environment: Does the scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Do the proposed studies benefit from unique features of the scientific environment(s), or subject populations, or employ useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of institutional support? 

Multiple PI Website: The NIH Portal for the Multiple PI project contains background materials and information about programs participating in the pilot.  http://grants2.nih.gov/grants/multi_pi/

Point of Contact:
Dr. Valerie Florance, Deputy Director
NLM Extramural Programs
6705 Rockledge Drive
Rockledge 1, Suite 301
Bethesda, MD 20892
Fax 301-402-2952

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

Office of Extramural Research (OER) - Home Page Office of Extramural
Research (OER)
  National Institutes of Health (NIH) - Home Page National Institutes of Health (NIH)
9000 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, Maryland 20892
  Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) - Home Page Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS)
  USA.gov - Government Made Easy

Note: For help accessing PDF, RTF, MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Audio or Video files, see Help Downloading Files.