NIH GUIDE, Volume 22, Number 31, August 27, 1993

P.T. 34



  Grants Administration/Policy+ 

National Cancer Institute

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) initiated the concept of the

interactive research project grant (IRPG) in January 1992 with the

publication of NIH Program Announcement PA-92-29 (NIH Guide for

Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 1, January 10, 1992).  This was

followed by Program Announcements in Digital Mammography (PA-92-57,

NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 12, March 27, 1992),

and Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy and Cancer Treatment (PA-92-86,

NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 21, No. 22, June 12, 1992).

Policies pertaining to these and all subsequent IRPG solicitations,

whether initiated by the NCI or another NIH Institute or Center, are

now subsumed under the NIH-wide program announcement PA-93-078,

entitled "Investigator Initiated Interactive Research Project Grants"

(NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 22, No. 16, April 23,


The items that differ from the previous NCI IRPG solicitations as

specified in the NIH-wide announcement are:  (a) to reduce the

minimum number of required projects from three to two; and (b)

clarification of the nature and content of the information to be

provided under Section 7 (Consultants/Collaborators) of the form PHS

398 application kit.

It is the policy of the NCI to accept unsolicited IRPG applications

in all areas of cancer research appropriate to the mission of the NCI

as delineated in the PHS referral guidelines.  Applications received

in response to IRPG program announcements normally will be assigned

to the appropriate Institute and study sections of the Division of

Research Grants according to the PHS referral guidelines.


The general principles to be employed by the NCI in consideration of

funding individual components of IRPGs received in response to

program announcements will be those that apply to all R01 awards;

that is, applications must fall within the R01 payline to be ranked

for immediate funding.

In addition, however, if any individual application within an IRPG

set falls within the natural R01 payline at the time of review, the

NCI will consider selected additional applications within the set

with scores better than the 35th percentile as possible candidates

for funding as exceptions, especially if such applications fall

within scientific areas designated as high priority by the NCI.

Currently, these high priority areas include cancer of the breast,

prostate, and ovary.

Continuing commitments and current limitations on available research

project grant (RPG) funds have affected the success rates of IRPGs,

as they have with all other RPG mechanisms.  Experience to date with

IRPGs indicates that, as for new (Type 1) R01 applications in

general, few original Type 1 applications submitted as components of

IRPG sets are likely to be scored within the established payline of

the NCI; it is consequently far less likely that more than one

application in any IRPG set will be scored within that payline.

If one or more, but not all, applications within an IRPG group

receive initial funding, and unfunded applications within that group

are subsequently amended and submitted on later receipt dates, the

awarded IRPG component(s) should be identified and may be cited in

the amended applications.  This situation will be considered as

forming a basis for subsequent exception funding for the resubmitted

amended applications should their percentile ranking place them

outside the then-current payline.  In such cases, those amended R01

applications must make reference to being part of a partially funded

IRPG.  They may, however, request support to extend beyond the end

date of the already awarded component R01(s), consistent with the

scientific goals of the application.

The National Cancer Institute intends to publish annually a list of

updated high priority areas for Interactive Research Project Grants.

While all IRPG applications outside these areas will be fully

considered for regular funding under current paradigms, the extreme

stringency of success rates for NCI R01 awards in general suggests

that potential IRPG applicants proposing to conduct research in lower

priority areas should be cautioned, therefore, to limit submission of

interactive projects to those that are most fully conceptualized and

integrated and that are felt to have the best chance of receiving

funding as independent research efforts.


Applicants with questions regarding NCI policies pertaining to these

awards are encouraged to contact an NCI program director or:

Deputy Director

Division of Extramural Activities

National Cancer Institute

Telephone:  (301) 496-4218

FAX:  (301) 402-0956


Return to 1993 Index

Return to NIH Guide Main Index

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) - Government Made Easy

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