Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): Competitive Revisions for Firearms Injury and Mortality Prevention Research

Notice Number: NOT-OD-20-089

Key Dates
Release Date: March 20, 2020
First Application Due Date: May 15, 2020
Expiration Date: May 16, 2020

Related Announcements

PA-19-055, Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Clinical Trial Required)
PA-19-056, NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
PA-19-091, NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Basic Experimental Studies with Humans Required)
PA-19-053 , NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)

PA-19-054 , NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Required)
PA-19-092, NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Basic Experimental Studies with Humans Required)

Issued by
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD)
National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR)
Office of Disease Prevention (ODP)
Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH)


This Notice solicits competitive revision applications to support the expansion of existing R01 and R21 programs well poised to expand their focus to include firearms research as described below. Revision applications can support a significant expansion of the scope and research protocol approved and funded for the parent award on which the revision application is based. Prospective investigators can consult the contact list below to ensure that projects will contribute considerably to achieving the goal of this Notice.

Nearly 40,000 people in the U.S. die from firearm-related deaths each year, primarily from suicide (60%) or homicide (37%), and many more have experienced non-fatal firearm injuries, both intentional and nonintentional. The Joint Explanatory Statement accompanying the FY2020 Further Consolidated Appropriations Act (H.R. 1865) included funding for the NIH to conduct research on firearm injury and mortality prevention and recommended that NIH take a comprehensive approach to studying the underlying causes and evidence-based methods of prevention of firearm injury, including crime prevention. Within the legislative mandates and limitations of NIH funding (NOT-OD-20-068, NOT-OD-20-066), the NIH, via this NOSI, encourages research to improve understanding of the determinants of firearm injury, the identification of those at risk of firearm injury (including both victims and perpetrators), the development and evaluation of innovative interventions to prevent firearm injury and mortality, and the examination of approaches to improve the implementation of existing, evidence-based interventions to prevent firearm injury and mortality.


The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is committed to understanding effective public health interventions to prevent violence, including firearm violence, and the trauma, injuries, and mortality resulting from violence. Scientific research is critical to understanding and preventing firearm violence. NIH has supported research on the causes and prevention of firearm violence for many years, and this funding announcement is intended to build upon the existing NIH research portfolio and address gaps and emerging opportunities to understand and prevent firearm violence injury and mortality.

The lives lost from firearm injury each year in the U.S. are comparable to the lives lost to motor vehicle accidents. When firearms are involved with violent events (including suicide, intimate partner violence, child or elder maltreatment, youth and gang related violence, sexual assault), the risk for injury and mortality increases. Firearm violence is responsible for three quarters of homicide deaths and is the most common and lethal means of suicide. In addition to physical injury, chronic health impacts, and potential mortality, witnessing or experiencing violent victimization increases the risk of acute and chronic mental and behavioral health conditions. Firearm injury and mortality also contribute to health disparities - among males aged 20-24, the firearm homicide rate is more than 10 times higher for black men than for white men. Modifiable risk factors associated with firearm violence include a number of personal (e.g., alcohol abuse), interpersonal (e.g., social network), and community (e.g., high unemployment) factors.

Research encouraged by this NOSI is consistent with a broad public health approach to firearm injury and mortality prevention including identifying those at risk for firearm injury and mortality (both victims and perpetrators), development and evaluation of theoretically-grounded programs to prevent firearm injury and mortality, and implementation research to explore the barriers and facilitators to support broader adoption of effective programs. In addition to interventions delivered by healthcare providers and systems, this initiative encourages research delivered in community settings, and that integrates individual, family, interpersonal, community, and structural or system (e.g., criminal or juvenile justice, child welfare, drug courts) approaches to firearm injury and mortality prevention. Thus, development of cross-sector partnerships and/or integration across disparate databases may be necessary. As a trans-NIH initiative, research on identification and screening for those at risk of firearm injury and mortality as well as prevention efforts should consider a comprehensive range of risk factors that transcend specific populations of interest to individual NIH institutes and centers. As such, this NOSI is comprehensive in its consideration of risk for victimization and/or perpetration across age/developmental period, gender, health disparity population, comorbid conditions (e.g., psychiatric or substance use disorders, progressive cognitive impairment or dementia), or other populations such as pregnant and post-partum women, justice system involved, veterans, and military.

Research topics within the scope of this NOSI may include but are not limited to:

  • Improve the ability to identify individuals at risk for firearm injury and mortality (victims and perpetrators), including suicide, homicide, and accidental injury and mortality. This may include but is not limited to: a) developing, testing, or validating innovative tools and technologies to screen and/or monitor firearm violence risk and mechanisms; b) applying advanced predictive analytic approaches (e.g., artificial intelligence, computational modeling) in situations for which these approaches can best inform risk identification, and informed by an understanding of the limits of these approaches (e.g., less precision for under-represented groups; data that reflect biases already in systems), and c) developing and testing models addressing the spread of firearm violence (e.g., social contagion).
  • Develop, validate, and study implementation procedures, particularly for healthcare systems (including emergency departments and primary care) to determine who should be screened and how to screen accurately and efficiently for risk of firearm injury and mortality.
  • Improve understanding of developmental and contextual factors associated with firearm injury and mortality that extends individual risk assessment to include situational factors such as use of alcohol or substances, among other factors, as well as multiple levels including peers, family, community, and structural determinants, and interactions across these levels.
  • Understand potential factors that could be enhanced to reduce the negative effects of risk exposure (e.g., resilience).
  • Develop and pilot test innovative and culturally competent interventions delivered online, in healthcare, and/or community settings (e.g., schools/childcare, workplaces, justice settings, social service or public health agencies, assisted living facilities) to prevent injury and mortality and revictimization/repeat injury or retaliatory firearm violence among those at risk. Interventions that involve multiple levels and sectors are encouraged.
  • Conduct implementation research with existing evidence-based interventions (e.g., safe storage counseling, lethal means counseling, motivational interviewing (e.g., safERteens), community-based violence interrupter programs) to assess barriers at multiple levels (e.g., provider, social, environmental, system, structural or policy) and improve fidelity, adherence, and adoption of these programs.
  • Study precision public health questions to determine for whom various firearm injury and mortality prevention programs are likely to be most effective.
  • Assess the impact of combining public health and criminal justice (crime prevention) approaches to reduce firearm injury and mortality. This includes the evaluation of changes in various laws and policies that may influence the impact of firearm injury and mortality prevention efforts (e.g., changes in alcohol or marijuana access and distribution, community policing programs, child welfare policies, clinician-reporting policies).

Research proposed in applications must be ideologically and politically unbiased.

NIH funds may not be used, in whole or in part, to advocate or promote gun control or to support lobbying activities, as outlined in Section 4 of the NIH Grants Policy Statement (GPS)- Public Policy Mandates

Application and Submission Information
Applicants do not need to apply to the same FOA that the parent grant was submitted to. Instead, we will be using existing FOAs noted below for application submission. In an exception to standard practice, the participating institutes/centers will accept competitive revision applications submitted to the FOAs listed below. Receipt dates indicated in these FOAs do not apply to applications responding to this request for competitive revisions. Therefore, applicants must submit competitive revision applications by May 15, 2020 as described below by 5pm at the local time of the applicant organization.
Submit applications for this initiative using one of the following funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) or any reissues of these announcement through the expiration date of this notice.
For applicants with a current active R01:

  • PA-19-055 - NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Clinical Trial Required)
  • PA-19-056 - NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
  • PA-19-091 NIH Research Project Grant (Parent R01 Basic Experimental Studies with Humans Required)

For applicants with a current active R21:

  • PA-19-053, NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
  • PA-19-054, NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Clinical Trial Required)

  • PA-19-092, NIH Exploratory/Developmental Research Grant Program (Parent R21 Basic Experimental Studies with Humans Required)

All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and the funding opportunity announcement used for submission must be followed, with the following additions:

  • Resource Sharing Plans are expected to must include a data sharing plan that describes their proposed process for making resulting publications, code, and to the extent possible, the underlying primary data immediately and broadly available to the public. See Section of the NIH GPS.

The NIH Policy on Dissemination of NIH-funded Clinical Trial Information establishes the expectation that all NIH-funded recipients and investigators conducting clinical trials, funded in whole or in part by the NIH, will ensure that their clinical trials are registered at, and that summary results information is submitted to, for public posting. See Section 4.1.3 of the NIH GPS.

Applicants will be expected to submit plans for pre-registration of research projects using publicly available platforms or as applicable. Funded awardees that are not using should provide in their annual progress reports the unique identifier assigned by the alternative platform, if available, and a link to the report (e.g., page or record) in the alternative platform.

NIH Public Access Policy:
NIH-funded investigators are required by Federal law to submit (or have submitted for them) to the NIH National Library of Medicine PubMed Central an electronic version of the final, peer-reviewed manuscript upon acceptance for publication, to be made publicly available no later than 12 months after the official date of publication. See Section 8.2.2 of the NIH GPS.

One-year supplement applications may be submitted with budgets up to $200,000 in direct costs. The project and budget periods must be within the currently approved project period for the existing parent award and the parent grant must be active when the application is submitted. Projects currently in a no-cost extension status are not eligible to apply.

For funding consideration, applicants must include NOT-OD-20-089 (without quotation marks) in the Agency Routing Identifier field (box 4B) of the SF424 R&R form. Applications without this information in box 4B will not be considered for this initiative.

Applications nonresponsive to terms of this NOSI will be withdrawn from consideration for this initiative.

Standard review criteria used in the FOAs noted above apply.


Please direct all inquiries to the contacts in Section VII of the listed funding opportunity announcements with the following additions/substitutions

Dara Blachman-Demner, Ph.D.
Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research
National Institutes of Health
Telephone: 301-496-8522