Clarification and Corrections to PA-08-098, PA-08-100, and PAR-08-105 (R21 FOAs)

Notice Number: NOT-OD-08-059

Key Dates
Release Date:  March 19, 2008

Issued by
National Institutes of Health (NIH) (
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) (;
National Institute of Neurological Disease and Stroke (NINDS) (
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development  (NICHD) (

The purpose of this Notice is to clarify and note corrections to the following R21 Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs):

PA-08-098:   Functional Links between the Immune System, Brain Function and Behavior (R21)
PA-08-100:   Mechanisms of Functional Recovery After Stroke (R21)
PAR-08-105: Optimizing Technologies for the Preservation of Fertility (R21)

The following information specific for the R21 activity code was added to these announcements:
1. In Section IV (Application and Submission Information), Part 6, “Other Submission Requirements”, under the heading of “PHS398 Research Plan Component Sections”, the following text has been added to each FOA:

All application instructions outlined in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide (MS Word or PDF) are to be followed, incorporating "Just-in-Time" information concepts, and with the following requirements for R21 applications:

2. In Section IV (Application and Submission Information), Part 6 “Other Submission Requirements”, under the heading of “Appendix Materials”, the following has been added to each FOA:

Applicants must follow the specific instructions on Appendix materials as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide (See
Do not use the Appendix to circumvent the page limitations of the Research Plan component. An application that does not comply with the required page limitations may be delayed in the review process.

3. In Section V (Application Review Information), Part 2, “Review and Selection Process”, the following information has been added to each FOA:

The NIH R21 exploratory/developmental grant is a mechanism for supporting novel scientific ideas or new model systems, tools, or technologies that have the potential to significantly advance our knowledge or the status of health-related research.  Because the Research Plan component is limited to 15 pages, an exploratory/developmental grant application need not have extensive background material or preliminary information as one might normally expect in an R01 application.  Accordingly, reviewers will focus their evaluation on the conceptual framework, the level of innovation, and the potential to significantly advance our knowledge or understanding.  Reviewers will place less emphasis on methodological details and certain indicators traditionally used in evaluating the scientific merit of R01 applications, including supportive preliminary data. Appropriate justification for the proposed work can be provided through literature citations, data from other sources, or, when available, from investigator-generated data.  Preliminary data are not required for R21 applications; however, they may be included if available.

All other aspects of the FOAs remain unchanged. The full text of these FOAs, which were published on March 07, 2008, can be found at the following urls:


This Notice is effective immediately.


We encourage your inquiries concerning these funding opportunities and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants. Staff Contact information is listed under Section VII in each of the FOAs:  


Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

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