NIH GUIDE, Volume 21, Number 29, August 14, 1992


P.T. 34



  Drugs/Drug Abuse 

  Mental Disorders 

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

National Institute on Drug Abuse

National Institute of Mental Health






The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and the National Institute of

Mental Health (NIMH) provide Scientist Development Awards (SDA) to

eligible applicants early in their careers who need additional

supervised research experience to develop into independent scientists.

The SDA is also available to experienced investigators who require

supervised research experience to enable them to switch fields.  These

awards are intended to make it possible for investigators to engage in

alcohol, drug abuse, and/or mental health related research on a

full-time, long-term basis, and to stimulate recipient institutions to

maintain and expand existing research programs or to establish new ones

for studies in these areas.

The NIAAA, NIDA, and NIMH each have different program goals and

initiatives; therefore, potential applicants must contact the

appropriate office, listed below, prior to preparing an application to

obtain the full Program Announcement (PA) and current information with

regard to the SDA.


The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health

promotion and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000,"

a PHS-led national activity for setting priority areas.  This PA,

Scientist Development Award, is related to the priority areas of mental

health and disorders and alcohol and other drugs.  Potential applicants

may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" (Full Report:  Stock No.

017-001-00474-0 or Summary Report:  Stock No. 017-001-00473-1) through

the Superintendent of Documents, Government Printing Office,

Washington, DC  20402-9935 (telephone 202/783-3238).


Eligible applicant institutions include public and private, non-profit

and for profit organizations and institutions engaged in alcohol, drug

abuse, and/or mental health research that are located in the United

States or its territories and possessions.  These institutions apply on

behalf of a qualified candidate who holds an earned doctorate.  Women

and minority candidates in particular are encouraged to apply.

An individual who has been a Principal Investigator on a Public Health

Service (PHS) research grant or who has had equivalent research support

is not eligible for the SDA.  Recipients of PHS Small Grant Awards are

an exception to this restriction and are eligible to apply.

Experienced investigators applying for an SDA may previously have held

a major PHS research grant or its equivalent; however, any such

previous award must have been in an area substantially different from

the research field in the SDA application.  Persons who hold a position

with firm salary support for full-time research, or those with endowed

chairs, are not eligible.


The mechanism of support is the Scientist Development Award (K21),

which is intended for beginning basic scientists who show great promise

but need supervised research experience to develop into independent

investigators, and for experienced investigators requiring supervised

research in order to switch fields.

The essential elements of the SDA are the qualifications and potential

of the candidate, an individualized, well thought-out career

development and research plan, a committed, capable preceptor, and

commitment on the part of the applicant institution to the development

of the candidate.  Documentation concerning each of these essential

elements must be included in the SDA application.

The candidate must be a citizen or noncitizen national of the United

States, or must have been lawfully admitted to the United States for

permanent residence and must possess an Alien Registration Receipt Card

(Form I-151 or I-551) at the time of an award.  The candidate must have

had the equivalent of at least two years of postdoctoral research

training or experience by the time the award is made.

Period of Support:  The SDA is limited to a single period of five

years.  Experienced investigators switching fields may request support

for a period of one to five years.

Salary Support:  The salary proposed must be consistent with the

established salary structure for full-time, 12-month appointments at

the grantee institution.  The funding component contribution to salary

support is geared to the institution's base as follows:  up to $45,000

- 100 percent of institutional base; $45,001 to $60,000 - $45,000;

$60,001 and over - 75 percent of institutional base, up to $75,000.

The grantee institution may supplement the funding component

contribution up to a level consistent with the institution's salary

scale.  Fringe benefits are paid out of grant funds in the same

proportion as the salary contribution.

Allowance for Support Costs:  In addition to salary support, funds up

to $50,000 in the aggregate may be requested for each year to support

research and/or career development activities.  Applicants may request

up to eight percent of direct costs for indirect costs.


The NIAAA, NIDA, and NIMH provide an integrated Scientist Development

Award Program that is made up of three types of awards: the Scientist

Development Awards (K20, K21), the Research Scientist Development Award

(K02), and the Research Scientist Award (K05).  Together they provide

a continuum of support for scientists at several stages of their

careers.  The SDA is designed for beginning individuals showing great

promise as researchers but requiring further supervised research

experience to become outstanding independent investigators.  It may

also be utilized by established investigators seeking to make

significant changes in their research fields.

The SDA candidate must address a program of research relevant to the

mission of the funding component.  The trajectory of the candidate's

development as a research scientist is of paramount importance in this

program, and the intent is to assist a person with great potential to

become an outstanding scientist, fully able to function as an

independent investigator.  An individual who holds a SDA grant is

expected to apply for a small grant award, a First Independent Research

Support and Transition (FIRST) award, a traditional research grant, or

any other appropriate grant, providing that eligibility criteria for

the other award(s) and terms and conditions of the SDA are met.


Individuals must devote full-time (at least 80 percent) to career

development activities, supervised research, developing skill in

research methods, or other research-related activities relevant to

their career goals.  Providing health care is acceptable only when it

is necessary to maintain and enhance skills required for the conduct of

research.  Remuneration for clinical practice, consultation, or work

related to the awardee's research program must be assigned to the

grantee Institution and may not be retained by the awardee.

Use of PHS Research or Training Grant Funds Freed By An SDA

Funds budgeted in Institute-supported research or training grants for

the salaries or fringe benefits of individuals, but freed as a result

of an SDA award, may not be rebudgeted.  Questions regarding leaves of

absence, change of Institution, or transfer of award should be

addressed to the appropriate staff of the funding component.

Concurrent Application

The candidate for an SDA may not concurrently apply for any other PHS

grant, nor may there be another application pending funding.




Applications for SDAs that involve human subjects are required to

include minorities and both genders in study populations.  This policy

applies to all research involving human subjects and human materials,

and applies to males and females of all ages.


Prospective applicants must contact the relevant office (see INQUIRIES)

for a copy of the complete PA and for information regarding

preapplication consultation and the application process.  The research

grant application kit form PHS 398 (rev. 9/91), is to be used in

applying for the SDA.  These forms are available from institutional

offices of sponsored research and from the offices listed under


Special instructions prepared for the SDA are included in the complete

PA.  The title and number of this PA, Scientist Development Award

(PA-92-99), must be typed in Item 2a on the face page of the

application form.  Applications will be accepted on February 1, June 1,

and October 1.  Applications received after these receipt dates are

subject to assignment to the next cycle or may be returned to the

applicant if so requested by the applicant.

An original and five copies of the completed and signed application

must be submitted to:

Division of Research Grants

National Institutes of Health

Westwood Building, Room 240

Bethesda, MD  20892**


Review procedures of SDA applications will be the customary system of

dual review:  evaluation for scientific and technical merit by an

initial review group of the appropriate funding component consisting

primarily of nongovernment scientific experts, followed by evaluation

for policy and program relevance by the appropriate National Advisory

Council.  Only applications recommended for approval by the Council

will be considered for funding.  Applications will be reviewed for the

candidate's potential to develop into a productive alcohol, drug abuse,

and/or mental health researcher.  Reviewers will consider:  (1) the

qualifications of the candidate including the suitability of the

candidate relative to the eligibility criteria and purposes of the SDA;

(2) the soundness of the proposed career development plan; (3) the

preceptor and institutional environment, including the institution's

commitment to the candidate's career; (4) the nature and

scientific/technical merit of the research plan; and (5) the

appropriateness of the budget.  Detailed review criteria are listed in

the full PA.


The responsibility for award decision resides solely with authorized

program staff of the funding component.  The following criteria will be

used in making award decisions:  (1) overall merit of the proposal; (2)

relevance of the proposal to the research priorities of the awarding

Institute and program balance; and (3) availability of funds.


The full PA, which includes the Special Instructions for preparing an

SDA application, up-to-date policy guidelines, and the application

forms may be obtained from any of the following offices:

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

OSAP National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information

P.O. Box 2345

Rockville, MD  20847-2345

Telephone: (301) 468-2600 or 1-(800)-729-6686

National Institute on Drug Abuse

Grants Management Branch

5600 Fishers Lane, Room 8A-54

Rockville, MD  20857

Telephone:  (301) 443-6710

National Institute of Mental Health

Grants Awards and Operations Section

Grants Management Branch

5600 Fishers Lane, Room 7C-05

Rockville, MD  20857

Telephone:  (301) 443-4414

Inquiries regarding grants management may be directed to the NIMH

address given immediately above.


This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

No. 93.271, 93.277, 93.281.  Awards will be made under the authority of

Section 301 of the Public Health Service Act, as amended (42 U.S.C.

241) and administered in accordance with the PHS grants policy

statement revised October 1990.  This program is not subject to the

intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or

health Systems Agency review.


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