Notice of Intent to Publish a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Human Studies of Target Identification, Biomarkers and Disease Mechanisms Specific to Small Blood and Lymphatic Vessels in the CNS and Retina (R01)

Notice Number: NOT-NS-17-031

Key Dates
Release Date: June 20, 2017

Estimated Publication Date of Announcement: October 2017
First Estimated Application Due Date: December 2017
Earliest Estimated Award Date: July 2018
Earliest Estimated Start Date: July 2018

Related Announcements


Issued by
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research (
National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS)
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)
Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR)


The NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research intends to promote a new initiative by publishing a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications for research to facilitate the development of tools and technology for non-invasive imaging and profiling of human CNS small blood and lymphatic vessels or to investigate using novel approaches their role in CNS physiology (including sleep, development and aging), disease and repair processes, and their responses to therapy.

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 October 2017 with an expected application due date in December 2017.
This FOA will utilize the R01 activity code.
Details of the planned FOA are provided below.

Research Initiative Details

This Notice encourages investigators with expertise and insights into mechanistic, technology development, and clinical studies focused on small blood and lymphatic vessels in the Central Nervous System (CNS, including retina) to begin to consider applying for this new FOA.

Multidisciplinary teams with complementary expertise in CNS cutting-edge imaging, neurovascular biology, immunology, biomarker development will be encouraged and these investigators are encouraged to apply for this application.
Studies focused on biomarker development for small vessel vascular contributions to cognitive impairment and dementia (VCID) and mechanistic basis of diffuse white matter disease in VCID will be not in scope for the new announcement, as they were covered by earlier FOAs (RFA-NS-16-019,; RFA-NS-16-020,; RFA-NS-16-021, However, these topics are still of high interest to the NINDS and applicants can apply under the Parent R01 or R21 mechanisms.

This FOA will enable the development and translation to humans of novel tools, technology, biomarkers, non-invasive imaging techniques, and targets, in order to structurally and functionally characterize CNS small blood and lymphatic vessels, as well as diagnose and treat their dysfunction, across the life span. This scientific area cuts across several CNS diseases within the NIH Blueprint Institutes mission, such as lacunar stroke, CNS microbleeds, traumatic brain injury, brain edema, CNS infection, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, stress, and other psychiatric diseases, drug and alcohol abuse, retinal vasculopathy, periodontal disease and nerve damage, childhood small vessel CNS vasculitis, CNS complications of preeclampsia, chronic pain, spinal cord disorders, and many other disorders, and includes complementary and integrative health approaches. Studies in animal models will be considered out of scope.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult with NINDS program staff (below) as plans for an application are being developed.



Please direct all inquiries to:

Francesca Bosetti, Pharm.D., Ph.D.
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-496-1431