Department of Health and Human Services
Part 1. Overview Information

 

Participating Organization(s)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Components of Participating Organizations

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Funding Opportunity Title

Oncology Co-Clinical Imaging Research Resources to Encourage Consensus on Quantitative Imaging Methods and Precision Medicine(U24)

Activity Code

U24 Resource-Related Research Projects – Cooperative Agreements

Announcement Type

Reissue of PAR-15-266

Related Notices
  • NOT-OD-18-009 - Reminder: FORMS-E Grant Application Forms and Instructions Must be Used for Due Dates On or After January 25, 2018.
  • September 20, 2017 - Updates to Active Funding Opportunity Announcements to Prepare for Policy Changes Impacting Due Dates On or After January 25, 2018. See NOT-OD-17-114.
  • May 10, 2017 - New NIH "FORMS-E" Grant Application Forms and Instructions Coming for Due Dates On or After January 25, 2018. See NOT-OD-17-062.
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number

PAR-16-385

Companion Funding Opportunity

None

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number(s)

93.394 

Funding Opportunity Purpose

The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to invite Cooperative Agreement applications to develop research resources that will encourage a consensus on how Quantitative Imaging (QI) methods are optimized to improve the quality of imaging results for co-clinical trials.

The scientific goals of this FOA are to: (a) perform the appropriate optimization of the pre-clinical quantitative imaging methods, (b) implement the optimized methods in the co-clinical trial, and finally (c) populate a web-accessible research resource with all the data, methods, workflow documentation, and results collected from the co-clinical investigations.

Co-clinical trials are defined in this FOA as investigations in patients and in parallel (or sequentially) in mouse or human-in-mouse models of cancer that mirror the genetics and biology of the patients’ malignancies or pre-cancerous lesions.

The co-clinical trial should include either (a) a therapeutic goal, such as the prediction, staging, and/or measurement of tumor response to therapies, or (b) a screening and early detection or a cancer risk stratification goal for lethal cancer versus non-lethal disease.

Applicants are encouraged to organize multi-disciplinary teams with experience in mouse models research, human investigations, imaging platforms, QI methods, decision support software and informatics to populate the research resource.   

Key Dates

 

Posted Date

August 4, 2016

Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)

October 17, 2016

Letter of Intent Due Date(s)

30 days prior to the application due date

Application Due Date(s)

November 17, 2016; June 14, 2017; November 17, 2017; June 14, 2018, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of non-AIDS applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on these dates.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early to allow adequate time to make any corrections to errors found in the application during the submission process by the due date.

AIDS Application Due Date(s)

Not Applicable

Scientific Merit Review

March 2017; October 2017; March 2018; October 2018

Advisory Council Review

May 2017, January 2018, May 2018, January 2019

Earliest Start Date

July 2017; March 2018; July 2018, March 2019

Expiration Date

June 15, 2018  

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the Research Instructions for the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, except where instructed to do otherwise (in this FOA or in a Notice from the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts). Conformance to all requirements (both in the Application Guide and the FOA) is required and strictly enforced. Applicants must read and follow all application instructions in the Application Guide as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions. Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.


There are several options available to submit your application through Grants.gov to NIH and Department of Health and Human Services partners. You must use one of these submission options to access the application forms for this opportunity.

  1. Use the NIH ASSIST system to prepare, submit and track your application online.
  2. Use an institutional system-to-system (S2S) solution to prepare and submit your application to Grants.gov and eRA Commons to track your application. Check with your institutional officials regarding availability.

  3. Use Grants.gov Workspace to prepare and submit your application and eRA Commons to track your application.
  4. Table of Contents

    Part 1. Overview Information
    Part 2. Full Text of the Announcement

    Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
    Section II. Award Information
    Section III. Eligibility Information
    Section IV. Application and Submission Information
    Section V. Application Review Information
    Section VI. Award Administration Information
    Section VII. Agency Contacts
    Section VIII. Other Information

    Part 2. Full Text of Announcement
    Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
    Purpose

    The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to invite Cooperative Agreement applications to develop research resources that will encourage a consensus on how Quantitative Imaging (QI) methods are optimized to improve the quality of imaging results for co-clinical trials.

    The scientific goals of this FOA are to: (a) perform the appropriate optimization of the pre-clinical quantitative imaging methods, (b) implement the optimized methods in the co-clinical trial, and finally (c) populate a web-accessible research resource with all the data, methods, workflow documentation, and results collected from the co-clinical investigations.

    Co-clinical trials are defined in this FOA as investigations in patients and in parallel (or sequentially) in mouse or human-in-mouse models of cancer that mirror the genetics and biology of the patients’ malignancies or pre-cancerous lesions.

    The co-clinical trial should include either (a) a therapeutic goal, such as the prediction, staging, and/or measurement of tumor response to therapies, or (b) a screening and early detection or a cancer risk stratification goal for lethal cancer versus non-lethal disease.

    Applicants are encouraged to organize multi-disciplinary teams with experience in mouse models research, human investigations, imaging platforms, QI methods, decision support software and informatics to populate the research resource.

    Background and Rationale

    Best practices for mouse models. The oncology research community increasingly employs mouse models to test potential agents for therapy and prevention, and methods to screen and detect cancers. There is now an extensive repertoire of available mouse models and their derivatives, including cell lines, cell-line xenografts, patient-derived tumor xenografts (PDXs), and genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs), and a wide range of validated translational applications. Because of the increasing importance of translational mouse model research, NCI is establishing the Oncology Models Forum (OMF) as described in PAR-14-239. The rationale for the OMF is that, despite the growing adoption of mouse and human-in-mouse models for translational cancer research, investigators often do not have a comprehensive dynamic resource for information to guide generating, validating, and credentialing new models, informing their practical uses, and advancing modeling techniques, or to provide catalogs of available models resources, programs, and services.

    The OMF goal is to evolve and sustain information resources that enable effective, reliable use of mice, mouse models, and human-in-mouse models in translational cancer research, and support other mouse modeling needs that the oncology community identifies. The OMF is designed to facilitate community-wide input to establish best practices for validation and credentialing of mouse and human-in-mouse models. Within this context, in vivo imaging has an important role as an enabling technology for preclinical research that would allow imaging data to be robustly integrated with other research data as required for precision medicine.

    Reliable, reproducible animal models research. NCI’s precision medicine initiative emphasizes the biological and molecular basis for cancer prevention and treatment, and also addresses consistency in in preclinical research and clinical research. The need for cost-effective, integral research and clinical use of appropriately designed and selected animal models has never been greater. There are increasing numbers of publications that document the significant potential of well-designed and controlled co-clinical human and animal model testing to support precision medicine. At the same time, there are mounting concerns across all research sectors about the reliability of animal models to reflect human biology and diseases, the reproducibility of animal experimentation to inform clinical choices, and the dearth of research-community–based best practices and appropriate standards for design, validation, and use of animal models and their associated data. Through implementation of the OMF, the NCI has chosen to establish an open environment in which the oncology community may collaborate to tackle the sundry issues that pertain to reproducibility of animal model research as required for precision medicine. Prominent among those issues is transparency of details that document development of standards and their application to translational research.

    Mouse Model Selection and Laboratory Practice. For therapy trials, the mouse models, by way of example, could be patient-derived tumor xenografts (PDXs), or genetically engineered mouse models (GEMMs), or both. There needs to be a match between the mouse tumor and the human tumor, which is usually determined by histological or genomics analysis, for example EGFR+, Her2, ER+. The drug must have demonstrated some efficacy in treating the specific tumor in humans preferably not in every patient, or known resistance after successful treatments. Use of a generic model with a drug whose effect in matched humans is not known is not appropriate for this FOA. The choices of mouse models for the screening/early detection goal or risk assessment are likely to pose additional or different considerations that applicants should address, as there are fewer published examples in these translational research areas. Thus, the requirements for model selection and laboratory practice need to reflect the limited state of the art for cancer screening/detection. In their research scope, all applicants should document best practices for animal husbandry, as these requirements are significant for serial imaging studies. The latter includes consistency in anesthesia administration, physiology monitoring, use of contrast media, and therapy administration, as well as reproducible animal positioning in imaging platforms where technically possible.

    Quantitative Imaging (QI) Methods. Community-wide efforts for the development of a consensus on QI methods and related imaging standards as related to the prediction and response to therapy have been transformative for the implementation of clinical therapeutic trials over the last decade. For example, these efforts have recently positioned imaging as a key element in the design of adaptive therapy trials and use of combination therapies. As a result, there is increased interest by the academic and industry sectors to participate in open science environments and use web accessible research resources to develop consensus approaches to validate QI methods for the next generation of clinical trials and subsequent clinical practice.  Examples of these resources are: 1) the NCI-supported Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA); 2) the National Cancer Informatics Program (NCIP-Hub) for sharing imaging methods and related software tools; 3) the NCI-funded Quantitative Imaging network (QIN; NCI PAR 14-116), which addresses the role of QI as applied to prediction and evaluation of response to cancer therapy. Leveraging the open science experience of the QIN network and the OMF are critical goals of this FOA.

    Pre-Clinical Quantitative Imaging Methods. Compared to clinical investigations, the technical challenges are significantly more difficult for the optimization of mouse model imaging protocols and QI methods. First, preclinical imaging platforms are reduced in scale compared to the corresponding clinical platforms. As a result, their physical performance characteristics are often very different from their clinical counterparts. In addition, these imaging platforms and related software tools are typically designed and optimized for imaging of small animals only, and many of these platforms/methods are unique compared to clinical platforms. To minimize this specific problem for the therapeutic goal for this FOA will require the use of the same class of commercially supported imaging platforms and software tools for the mouse models as the imaging platforms currently employed in the clinical trial setting, such as PET, CT, MRI, or US. For the prevention and screening/early detection or cancer risk assessment goal, however, the use of advanced prototype platforms/methods may also be required for either pre-clinical or the clinical studies.

    Specific Research Objectives

    Applicants are encouraged to organize multi-disciplinary teams with experience in mouse models research, the proposed mouse model and human investigations, imaging platforms, QI methods, decision support software and informatics to populate the research resource. They should provide a strategy that includes collaborating with the OMF, particularly in the context of formulating and testing best practices for co-clinical mouse model research, and the QIN network where appropriate to implement state of the art QI methods.  Partnerships with industry are strongly encouraged, but are not required, to encourage a broader adoption of QI methods for co-clinical trials.

    To be considered for funding, applicants must address the primary goal of this FOA namely to populate a web-accessible research resource and demonstrate its functionality. This resource should be designed to encourage other investigators to explore additional approaches for QI methods for future investigations. They are strongly encouraged to use the NCI-supported research resources to host image, metadata and software tools/methods; namely (a) the Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA) that is fully HIPAA compliant; (b) the NCI-CBIIT funded National Biomedical Imaging Archive (NBIA), an open source computer platform that supports TCIA, and (c) the NCI NCIP Hub is employed by the OMF

    for sharing data, methods and software tools and cloud computing.

    The following types of projects are not appropriate for this FOA:

    • The planned prospective clinical trial or intervention study
    • The development of new quantitative imaging methods or software tools for co-clinical trials
    • The development of new imaging platforms for co-clinical trials
    • The employment of non FDA approved imaging platforms for the clinical trial
    • The development of new mouse models that have not been validated and credentialed
    • The development of new laboratory based assays or biomarkers
    Alternative/Related Funding Initiatives
    • Investigators seeking support for imaging clinical trials, as such, are referred to the following initiatives: PAR-14-166; NCI Imaging Program Clinic Trials; and NCI Radiation Research Program Trials;
    • Academic and Industry investigators seeking complementary support for related research in areas such as the development and translation of new imaging platforms, component technologies, quantitative imaging methods, and related research resources for pre-clinical, co-clinical or clinical research are encouraged to use the following initiative: PAR-15-075;
    • Investigators seeking complementary support for related research in areas such as the informatics tools requirement of pre-clinical, co-clinical or clinical research, resources are encouraged to use the following informatics initiatives: PAR-15-331; PAR-15-332; PAR-15-333; PAR-15-334;
    • Investigators seeking complementary support for related research in areas such as animal models for pre-clinical, co-clinical or clinical research are encouraged to use the following initiative: PAR-16-058; PAR-16-059.

    See Section VIII. Other Information for award authorities and regulations.

    Section II. Award Information
    Funding Instrument

    Cooperative Agreement: A support mechanism used when there will be substantial Federal scientific or programmatic involvement. Substantial involvement means that, after award, NIH scientific or program staff will assist, guide, coordinate, or participate in project activities. See Section VI.2 for additional information about the substantial involvement for this FOA.

    Application Types Allowed

    New
    Resubmission
    Revision

    The OER Glossary and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types.

    Clinical Trial?

    Clinical Trials Not Allowed for due dates on or after January 25, 2018: Only accepting applications that do not propose clinical trials

    Need help determining whether you are doing a clinical trial?

    Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

    The number of awards is contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications.

    Award Budget

    Application budgets for direct costs up to $500,000 per year may be requested.

    Award Project Period

    The scope of the proposed project should determine the project period. The maximum period is 5 years.  

    NIH grants policies as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement will apply to the applications submitted and awards made in response to this FOA.

    Section III. Eligibility Information
    1. Eligible Applicants
    Eligible Organizations

    Higher Education Institutions

    • Public/State Controlled Institutions of Higher Education
    • Private Institutions of Higher Education

    The following types of Higher Education Institutions are always encouraged to apply for NIH support as Public or Private Institutions of Higher Education:

    o    Hispanic-serving Institutions

    o    Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)

    o    Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)

    o    Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions

    o    Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

    Nonprofits Other Than Institutions of Higher Education

    • Nonprofits with 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institutions of Higher Education)
    • Nonprofits without 501(c)(3) IRS Status (Other than Institutions of Higher Education)

    For-Profit Organizations

    • Small Businesses
    • For-Profit Organizations (Other than Small Businesses)

    Governments

    • State Governments
    • County Governments
    • City or Township Governments
    • Special District Governments
    • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Federally Recognized)
    • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Other than Federally Recognized)
    • Eligible Agencies of the Federal Government
    • U.S. Territory or Possession

    Other

    • Independent School Districts
    • Public Housing Authorities/Indian Housing Authorities
    • Native American Tribal Organizations (other than Federally recognized tribal governments)
    • Faith-based or Community-based Organizations
    • Regional Organizations
    Foreign Institutions

    Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are not eligible to apply.
    Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are not eligible to apply.
    Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are  allowed.

    Required Registrations

    Applicant Organizations

    Applicant organizations must complete and maintain the following registrations as described in the SF 424 (R&R) Application Guide to be eligible to apply for or receive an award. All registrations must be completed prior to the application being submitted. Registration can take 6 weeks or more, so applicants should begin the registration process as soon as possible. The NIH Policy on Late Submission of Grant Applications states that failure to complete registrations in advance of a due date is not a valid reason for a late submission.

    • Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) - All registrations require that applicants be issued a DUNS number. After obtaining a DUNS number, applicants can begin both SAM and eRA Commons registrations. The same DUNS number must be used for all registrations, as well as on the grant application.
    • System for Award Management (SAM) (formerly CCR) – Applicants must complete and maintain an active registration, which requires renewal at least annually. The renewal process may require as much time as the initial registration. SAM registration includes the assignment of a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code for domestic organizations which have not already been assigned a CAGE Code.
    • NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code – Foreign organizations must obtain an NCAGE code (in lieu of a CAGE code) in order to register in SAM. 
    • eRA Commons - Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the eRA Commons registration. Organizations can register with the eRA Commons as they are working through their SAM or Grants.gov registration. eRA Commons requires organizations to identify at least one Signing Official (SO) and at least one Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) account in order to submit an application.
    • Grants.gov – Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the Grants.gov registration.

    Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD(s)/PI(s))

    All PD(s)/PI(s) must have an eRA Commons account.  PD(s)/PI(s) should work with their organizational officials to either create a new account or to affiliate their existing account with the applicant organization in eRA Commons. If the PD/PI is also the organizational Signing Official, they must have two distinct eRA Commons accounts, one for each role. Obtaining an eRA Commons account can take up to 2 weeks.

    Eligible Individuals (Program Director/Principal Investigator)

    Any individual(s) with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research as the Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) is invited to work with his/her organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for NIH support.

    For institutions/organizations proposing multiple PDs/PIs, visit the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator Policy and submission details in the Senior/Key Person Profile (Expanded) Component of the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    2. Cost Sharing

    This FOA does not require cost sharing as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    3. Additional Information on Eligibility
    Number of Applications

    Applicant organizations may submit more than one application, provided that each application is scientifically distinct.

    The NIH will not accept duplicate or highly overlapping applications under review at the same time.  This means that the NIH will not accept:

    • A new (A0) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of an overlapping new (A0) or resubmission (A1) application.
    • A resubmission (A1) application that is submitted before issuance of the summary statement from the review of the previous new (A0) application.
    • An application that has substantial overlap with another application pending appeal of initial peer review (see NOT-OD-11-101).
    Section IV. Application and Submission Information
    1. Requesting an Application Package

    Buttons to access the online ASSIST system or to download application forms are available in Part 1 of this FOA. See your administrative office for instructions if you plan to use an institutional system-to-system solution.

    2. Content and Form of Application Submission

    It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the Research Instructions for the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, including Supplemental Grant Application Instructions except where instructed in this funding opportunity announcement to do otherwise. Conformance to the requirements in the Application Guide is required and strictly enforced. Applications that are out of compliance with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

    For information on Application Submission and Receipt, visit Frequently Asked Questions – Application Guide, Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.

    Letter of Intent

    Although a letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and does not enter into the review of a subsequent application, the information that it contains allows IC staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan the review.

    By the date listed in Part 1. Overview Information, prospective applicants are asked to submit a letter of intent that includes the following information:

    • Descriptive title of proposed activity
    • Name(s), address(es), and telephone number(s) of the PD(s)/PI(s)
    • Names of other key personnel
    • Participating institution(s)
    • Number and title of this funding opportunity

    The letter of intent should be sent to:

    Huiming Zhang, Ph.D.
    Division of Cancer Diagnostic and Treatment
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-5979
    Fax: 240-276-7890
    Email: zhanghui@mail.nih.gov

    Page Limitations

    All page limitations described in the SF424 Application Guide and the Table of Page Limits must be followed.

    Instructions for Application Submission

    The following section supplements the instructions found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide and should be used for preparing an application to this FOA.

    SF424(R&R) Cover

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Project/Performance Site Locations

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Other Project Information

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed. 

    Multi-disciplinary Teams: Applicants are encouraged to organize multi-disciplinary teams with experience in mouse models research, the proposed mouse model and human investigations, imaging platforms, QI methods, decision support software and informatics to populate the research resource as described in this FOA. Applicants are required to use the multiple Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PD/PIs) leadership option.

    R&R Budget

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    In the application, research project budget requests must include costs for:

    Travel: Applicants should budget funds for travel for the PD(s)/PI(s) and two additional senior members to two network wide meetings per year.

    Sharing of imaging protocols, software tools, and data: Applicants are permitted to budget for the following tasks as necessary:

    (a) Add any additional validated state-of-the-art quantitative imaging methods/protocols and quantity assurance methods to improve any proposed prospective clinical studies;

    (b) Support for the proposed pre-clinical imaging methods necessary to implement the mouse model trial;

    (c) Optimization of the pre-clinical imaging methods required to improve the quality of imaging results for the proposed co-clinical investigations;

    (d) Imaging data collection and analysis;

    (e) Sharing of image data and metadata, metrology tools, and results; and

    (f) Creation of the research resource and demonstration of its functionality.

    R&R Subaward Budget

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.  

    PHS 398 Research Plan

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed, with the following additional instructions: 

    Research Strategy: The following issues need to be addressed in the research strategy with the understanding that emphasis in each area may vary depending on the specific research goal. Applicants are encouraged to address all areas as listed below.

    • Research resource structure
    • Co-Clinical trial design
    • Mouse models
    • Quantitative imaging methods
    • Informatics
    • Research resource functionality

    Each application need not be strong in all areas of the research areas as detailed below, but must propose a research resource that can effectively serve the research needs of the co-clinical trial community.

    Research resource structure: The proposed research resource should contain four essential elements. These are quantitative imaging, animal models, co-clinical trials and informatics. The applicants are expected to organize multi-disciplinary teams.. Some members might not have previous collaboration experiences.

    1. Co-Clinical Trial Design:

    The applicants are expected to propose their co-clinical investigations by either taking advantage of on-going clinical trials, or matching to retrospective clinical trials.  Note that the cost of the prospective clinical trial will not be supported by this FOA, but the addition of improved quantitative imaging methods will be supported. The statistical justification of subjects for co-clinical imaging investigations will be based primarily on generating reliable, repeatable and reproducible QI measurements, and demonstrating improved quality of imaging results in the co-clinical trials.

    For the therapeutic goal of this FOA the primary or secondary drug to be tested, or the other types of therapy or interventions proposed for the co-clinical therapy trial, should be known to have a response in tumors that are matched histologically or genomically with the mouse model. For the prevention goal of this FOA the form of intervention should be known to be effective within the context of early cancer detection or prevention.

    2. Mouse models:

    The mouse models and human-in-mouse models for cancer treatment, prevention, or cancer risk assessment studies should be available, validated, and credentialed using published recommended best practices. As examples, genetically engineered mouse models with single or multiple mutations, and patient derived xenograft (PDX) models made directly from patient’s tumors or from existing human-derived tumor specimen banks are appropriate. The research scope should conform to accepted Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) procedures and address best practices for mouse housing and care; anesthesia administration; physiology monitoring; drug, contrast media, or therapy administration; animal positioning/repositioning and data acquisition on imaging platforms.

    3. Quantitative Imaging methods:

    The proposed prospective clinical investigation, if selected, should include state-of-the-art imaging protocols and QI methods using commercially supported, and FDA-approved imaging platforms. Single or multimodal imaging, advanced prototype platforms with IDE, novel imaging probes with IND, and user developed software tools are appropriate. The retrospective clinical trial, if selected, should include state-of-the-art QI protocols and methods at the time when data were collected, and must have appropriate documentation of all samples collected and related methods. The inclusion of other laboratory, molecular biomarker, and pathology correlation studies on commercially supported platforms is encouraged but must be documented.

    The selection of the preclinical QI methods must be identical to the state-of-the-art QI methods at clinical setting. The proposed QI methods for the preclinical studies should be optimized to improve the quality of imaging results for the proposed co-clinical trial. The applicants are expected to submit a detailed research strategy to implement the proposed imaging protocols, QI and quality control/assurance (QC/QA) methods currently employed in clinical trials or prevention studies and state-of-the-art preclinical imaging methods. The applicants should include an evaluation process for assessing the improvement to the quality of imaging results for co-clinical trials. 

    4. Informatics:

    The applicants should propose to employ state-of-the-art informatics methods for achieving images and metadata, tools sharing, and providing web-accessibility. Applicants are not required, but are encouraged to propose strategies to integrate imaging data with biology information such as proteomics, genomics, pathology, and clinical information. The use of NCI-funded resources is highly recommended, namely the TCIA and NCIP Hub that is being implemented by the OMF. In addition, contributions to existing NCI funded networks (Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN), Oncology Models Forum (OMF) or Early Detection Research Network (EDRN) etc.) are appropriate.

    Research resource functionality: This is an internet-accessible research resource to be populated with functional information such as the collected co-clinical data, detailed methods, related software tools (metrology tools), the results for the proposed co-clinical trial, and other useful items. The applicants should submit a strategy for the creation of such a research resource and address how the functionality of the proposed resource will be demonstrated, permitting the research community to explore how the proposed QI methods can be used and improved. As an example, the creation of a research resource to perform a software challenge, where the performance of a researcher’s developing tools could be compared to the performance of optimized software tools existing in the research resource.

    Milestones: A list of milestones that measure progress in the development of the proposed research resource must be given in the form of a Gantt Chart. The functionality of the research resource is to be demonstrated before the end of the third quarter of year 5.

    Resource Sharing Plan: Individuals are required to comply with the instructions for the Resource Sharing Plans as provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, with the following modification:

    • All applications, regardless of the amount of direct costs requested for any one year, should address a Data Sharing Plan.
    • The intellectual property associated with the software tools related to clinical decisions will remain with the academic institution or industrial partner, but an agreement to an “open science” approach to validate tool performance is expected for this FOA, consistent with achieving the goals of this program.For this FOA, it is suggested that all U24 applicants submit a plan for sharing collected data (cost sharing for image data sets, annotated data and Meta data for example), posting this data on an imaging archive such as The Cancer Imaging Archive (TCIA), NCIP Hub or equivalent.
    • A software dissemination plan, with appropriate timelines, is expected to be to meet the goals of this initiative. Grantees are entitled to limited software copyright protections and institutional software licensing agreements.

    Appendix:  Do not use the Appendix to circumvent page limits. Follow all instructions for the Appendix as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report

    When conducting clinical research, follow all instructions for completing PHS Inclusion Enrollment Report as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information

    Form only available in FORMS-E application packages for use with due dates on or after January 25, 2018.

    When involving NIH-defined human subjects research, clinical research, and/or clinical trials follow all instructions for the PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information form in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide, with the following additional instructions:

    If you answered "Yes" to the question "Are Human Subjects Involved?" on the R&R Other Project Information form, you must include at least one human subjects study record using the Study Record: PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information form or a Delayed Onset Study record.

    Study Record: PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information
    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    Delayed Onset Study: All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

    PHS Assignment Request Form

    All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed. 

    3. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM)

    See Part 1. Section III.1 for information regarding the requirement for obtaining a unique entity identifier and for completing and maintaining active registrations in System for Award Management (SAM), NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) Code (if applicable), eRA Commons, and Grants.gov

    4. Submission Dates and Times

    Part I. Overview Information contains information about Key Dates and times. Applicants are encouraged to submit applications before the due date to ensure they have time to make any application corrections that might be necessary for successful submission. When a submission date falls on a weekend or Federal holiday, the application deadline is automatically extended to the next business day.

    Organizations must submit applications to Grants.gov (the online portal to find and apply for grants across all Federal agencies). Applicants must then complete the submission process by tracking the status of the application in the eRA Commons, NIH’s electronic system for grants administration. NIH and Grants.gov systems check the application against many of the application instructions upon submission. Errors must be corrected and a changed/corrected application must be submitted to Grants.gov on or before the application due date and time.  If a Changed/Corrected application is submitted after the deadline, the application will be considered late. Applications that miss the due date and time are subjected to the NIH Policy on Late Application Submission.

    Applicants are responsible for viewing their application before the due date in the eRA Commons to ensure accurate and successful submission.

    Information on the submission process and a definition of on-time submission are provided in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    5. Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)

    This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

    6. Funding Restrictions

    All NIH awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Pre-award costs are allowable only as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    7. Other Submission Requirements and Information

    Applications must be submitted electronically following the instructions described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.  Paper applications will not be accepted.

    Applicants must complete all required registrations before the application due date. Section III. Eligibility Information contains information about registration.

    For assistance with your electronic application or for more information on the electronic submission process, visit Applying Electronically. If you encounter a system issue beyond your control that threatens your ability to complete the submission process on-time, you must follow the Guidelines for Applicants Experiencing System Issues. For assistance with application submission, contact the Application Submission Contacts in Section VII.

    Important reminders:

    All PD(s)/PI(s) must include their eRA Commons ID in the Credential field of the Senior/Key Person Profile Component of the SF424(R&R) Application Package. Failure to register in the Commons and to include a valid PD/PI Commons ID in the credential field will prevent the successful submission of an electronic application to NIH. See Section III of this FOA for information on registration requirements.

    The applicant organization must ensure that the DUNS number it provides on the application is the same number used in the organization’s profile in the eRA Commons and for the System for Award Management. Additional information may be found in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

    See more tips for avoiding common errors.

    Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness and compliance with application instructions by the Center for Scientific Review, NIH. Applications that are incomplete or non-compliant will not be reviewed.

    Post Submission Materials

    Applicants are required to follow our Post Submission Application Materials policy.

    Section V. Application Review Information
    1. Criteria

    Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process. As part of the NIH mission, all applications submitted to the NIH in support of biomedical and behavioral research are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.

    For this FOA:

    The emphasis of this mission-oriented FOA is on performing appropriate optimization of preclinical QI methods, implementing themin the co-clinical trial, and finally populating a web-accessible research resource with all the data, methods, workflow documentation, and results collected from the co-clinical investigations. As limited knowledge is available about testing QI methods in the co-clinical trial setting, the grant application will contain details about QI optimization strategies, image quality assessment and biological validations, and potential to significantly advance co-clinical trial research. 

    Reviewers will emphasize the specificity and sensitivity of proposed QI methods, the quality of collected data, the knowledge created using the QI methods at co-clinical trial setting, the web accessibility of the resulting functional information, and the opportunity for further collaboration outside to promote consensus on optimizing QI methods in the co-clinical trial setting.

    Overall Impact

    Reviewers will provide an overall impact score to reflect their assessment of the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the research field(s) involved, in consideration of the following review criteria and additional review criteria (as applicable for the project proposed).

    Scored Review Criteria

    Reviewers will consider each of the review criteria below in the determination of scientific merit, and give a separate score for each. An application does not need to be strong in all categories to be judged likely to have major scientific impact. For example, a project that by its nature is not innovative may be essential to advance a field.

    Significance

    Does the proposed resource address the needs of the research projects in co-clinical trial community that it will serve? Is the scope of the activities proposed for the resource appropriate to meet those needs? Will successful completion of the aims bring unique advantages or capabilities to the research resource?

    Specific to this FOA: Will this resource be applicable to co-clinical trials of interventional therapies, diagnosis or screening/early detection for targeted cancer problem?

    Investigator(s)

    Are the PD(s)/PI(s) and other personnel well suited to their roles in the resource? Do they have appropriate experience and training, and have they demonstrated experience and an ongoing record of accomplishments in managing activities in quantitative imaging research, animal models, co-clinical trials and informatics? Do the investigators demonstrate significant experience with coordinating collaborative preclinical and clinical research? If the resource is multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise and skills; are their leadership approach, governance, plans for conflict resolution, and organizational structure appropriate for the resource? Does the applicant have experience overseeing selection and management of subawards, if needed?  

    Specific to this FOA: Does the multi-disciplinary team of investigators have the complementary experience to design and create an effective web accessible public research resource?

    Innovation

    Does the application propose novel management strategies in coordinating the research projects the resource will serve? Are the concepts, strategies, or instrumentation novel to one type of research program or applicable in a broad sense? Is a refinement, improvement, or new application of management strategies proposed? 

    Specific to this FOA: Does the primary emphasis of the proposed project focus on performing appropriate optimization of preclinical QI methods for resource development? Do the investigators propose state-of-the-art methods for the optimization and validation for the proposed quantitative imaging methods and imaging protocols? Will these methods improve the quality of imaging results for the proposed co-clinical investigation? Is the research resource innovative in terms of its design and data content?

    Approach

    Are the overall strategy, operational plan, and organizational structure well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the goals of the research projects the resource will serve? Will the investigators promote strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased scientific approach across the resource, as appropriate for the work proposed? Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented? If the resource is in the early stages of operation, does the proposed strategy adequately establish feasibility and manage the risks associated with the activities of the resource? Are an appropriate plan for work-flow and a well-established timeline proposed?  Have the investigators presented adequate plans to ensure consideration of relevant biological variables, such as sex, for studies of vertebrate animals or human subjects? 

    Specific to this FOA: Do the investigators propose a coherent strategy to design and implement the proposed research resource, and to demonstrate the functionality of the research resource for the targeted cancer problem? Do investigators propose any evaluation process for assessing the improvement to the quality of imaging results for co-clinical trials?

    If the project involves human subjects and/or NIH-defined clinical research, are the plans to address 1) the protection of human subjects from research risks, and 2) inclusion (or exclusion) of individuals on the basis of sex/gender, race, and ethnicity, as well as the inclusion or exclusion of children, justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed?  

    Environment

    Will the institutional environment in which the resource will operate contribute to the probability of success in facilitating the research projects it serves? Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the Center proposed? Will the Center benefit from unique features of the institutional environment, infrastructure, or personnel?  Are resources available within the scientific environment to support electronic information handling?

    Specific to this FOA:  Does the research environment include state-of-the-art research facilities to support (a) the development and implementation of the proposed co-clinical trials; and (b) the creation of a web accessible research resource that will support the co-clinical trial community as described in this FOA? 

    Additional Review Criteria

    As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will evaluate the following additional items while determining scientific and technical merit, and in providing an overall impact score, but will not give separate scores for these items.

    Protections for Human Subjects

    For research that involves human subjects but does not involve one of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR Part 46, the committee will evaluate the justification for involvement of human subjects and the proposed protections from research risk relating to their participation according to the following five review criteria: 1) risk to subjects, 2) adequacy of protection against risks, 3) potential benefits to the subjects and others, 4) importance of the knowledge to be gained, and 5) data and safety monitoring for clinical trials.

    For research that involves human subjects and meets the criteria for one or more of the six categories of research that are exempt under 45 CFR Part 46, the committee will evaluate: 1) the justification for the exemption, 2) human subjects involvement and characteristics, and 3) sources of materials. For additional information on review of the Human Subjects section, please refer to the Guidelines for the Review of Human Subjects.

    Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Children 

    When the proposed project involves human subjects and/or NIH-defined clinical research, the committee will evaluate the proposed plans for the inclusion (or exclusion) of individuals on the basis of sex/gender, race, and ethnicity, as well as the inclusion (or exclusion) of children to determine if it is justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed. For additional information on review of the Inclusion section, please refer to the Guidelines for the Review of Inclusion in Clinical Research.

    Vertebrate Animals

    The committee will evaluate the involvement of live vertebrate animals as part of the scientific assessment according to the following criteria: (1) description of proposed procedures involving animals, including species, strains, ages, sex, and total number to be used; (2) justifications for the use of animals versus alternative models and for the appropriateness of the species proposed; (3) interventions to minimize discomfort, distress, pain and injury; and (4) justification for euthanasia method if NOT consistent with the AVMA Guidelines for the Euthanasia of Animals. Reviewers will assess the use of chimpanzees as they would any other application proposing the use of vertebrate animals. For additional information on review of the Vertebrate Animals section, please refer to the Worksheet for Review of the Vertebrate Animal Section.

    Biohazards

    Reviewers will assess whether materials or procedures proposed are potentially hazardous to research personnel and/or the environment, and if needed, determine whether adequate protection is proposed.

    Resubmissions

    For Resubmissions, the committee will evaluate the application as now presented, taking into consideration the responses to comments from the previous scientific review group and changes made to the project.

    Renewals

    Not Applicable

    Revisions

    For Revisions, the committee will consider the appropriateness of the proposed expansion of the scope of the project. If the Revision application relates to a specific line of investigation presented in the original application that was not recommended for approval by the committee, then the committee will consider whether the responses to comments from the previous scientific review group are adequate and whether substantial changes are clearly evident.

    Additional Review Considerations

    As applicable for the project proposed, reviewers will consider each of the following items, but will not give scores for these items, and should not consider them in providing an overall impact score.

    Applications from Foreign Organizations

    Not Applicable

    Select Agent Research

    Reviewers will assess the information provided in this section of the application, including 1) the Select Agent(s) to be used in the proposed research, 2) the registration status of all entities where Select Agent(s) will be used, 3) the procedures that will be used to monitor possession use and transfer of Select Agent(s), and 4) plans for appropriate biosafety, biocontainment, and security of the Select Agent(s).

    Resource Sharing Plans

    Reviewers will comment on whether the following Resource Sharing Plans, or the rationale for not sharing the following types of resources, are reasonable: (1) Data Sharing Plan; (2) Sharing Model Organisms; and (3)  Genomic Data Sharing Plan (GDS).

    Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources:

    For projects involving key biological and/or chemical resources, reviewers will comment on the brief plans proposed for identifying and ensuring the validity of those resources.

    Budget and Period of Support

    Reviewers will consider whether the budget and the requested period of support are fully justified and reasonable in relation to the proposed research.

    2. Review and Selection Process

    Applications will be evaluated for scientific and technical merit by (an) appropriate Scientific Review Group(s) convened by NCI, in accordance with NIH peer review policy and procedures, using the stated review criteria. Assignment to a Scientific Review Group will be shown in the eRA Commons.

    As part of the scientific peer review, all applications:

    • May undergo a selection process in which only those applications deemed to have the highest scientific and technical merit (generally the top half of applications under review) will be discussed and assigned an overall impact score.
    • Will receive a written critique.

    Applications will be assigned on the basis of established PHS referral guidelines to the appropriate NIH Institute or Center. Applications will compete for available funds with all other recommended applications submitted in response to this FOA. Following initial peer review, recommended applications will receive a second level of review by the National Cancer Advisory Board. The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

    • Scientific and technical merit of the proposed project as determined by scientific peer review.
    • Availability of funds.
    • Relevance of the proposed project to program priorities.
    3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

    After the peer review of the application is completed, the PD/PI will be able to access his or her Summary Statement (written critique) via the eRA Commons. Refer to Part 1 for dates for peer review, advisory council review, and earliest start date.

    Information regarding the disposition of applications is available in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Section VI. Award Administration Information
    1. Award Notices

    If the application is under consideration for funding, NIH will request "just-in-time" information from the applicant as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    A formal notification in the form of a Notice of Award (NoA) will be provided to the applicant organization for successful applications. The NoA signed by the grants management officer is the authorizing document and will be sent via email to the grantee’s business official.

    Awardees must comply with any funding restrictions described in Section IV.5. Funding Restrictions. Selection of an application for award is not an authorization to begin performance. Any costs incurred before receipt of the NoA are at the recipient's risk. These costs may be reimbursed only to the extent considered allowable pre-award costs.

    Any application awarded in response to this FOA will be subject to terms and conditions found on the Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants website.  This includes any recent legislation and policy applicable to awards that is highlighted on this website.

    2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

    All NIH grant and cooperative agreement awards include the NIH Grants Policy Statement as part of the NoA. For these terms of award, see the NIH Grants Policy Statement Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart A: General  and Part II: Terms and Conditions of NIH Grant Awards, Subpart B: Terms and Conditions for Specific Types of Grants, Grantees, and Activities. More information is provided at Award Conditions and Information for NIH Grants.

    Recipients of federal financial assistance (FFA) from HHS must administer their programs in compliance with federal civil rights law. This means that recipients of HHS funds must ensure equal access to their programs without regard to a person’s race, color, national origin, disability, age and, in some circumstances, sex and religion. This includes ensuring your programs are accessible to persons with limited English proficiency.  HHS recognizes that research projects are often limited in scope for many reasons that are nondiscriminatory, such as the principal investigator’s scientific interest, funding limitations, recruitment requirements, and other considerations. Thus, criteria in research protocols that target or exclude certain populations are warranted where nondiscriminatory justifications establish that such criteria are appropriate with respect to the health or safety of the subjects, the scientific study design, or the purpose of the research.

    In accordance with the statutory provisions contained in Section 872 of the Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 2009 (Public Law 110-417), NIH awards will be subject to the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS) requirements.  FAPIIS requires Federal award making officials to review and consider information about an applicant in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS) prior to making an award.  An applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through FAPIIS and comment on any information about itself that a Federal agency previously entered and is currently in FAPIIS.  The Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to other information in FAPIIS, in making a judgement about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in 45 CFR Part 75.205 “Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.”  This provision will apply to all NIH grants and cooperative agreements except fellowships.

    For additional guidance regarding how the provisions apply to NIH grant programs, please contact the Scientific/Research Contact that is identified in Section VII under Agency Contacts of this FOA. HHS provides general guidance to recipients of FFA on meeting their legal obligation to take reasonable steps to provide meaningful access to their programs by persons with limited English proficiency. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/resources/laws/revisedlep.html. The HHS Office for Civil Rights also provides guidance on complying with civil rights laws enforced by HHS. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/section1557/index.html; and http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/index.html. Recipients of FFA also have specific legal obligations for serving qualified individuals with disabilities. Please see http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/disability/index.html. Please contact the HHS Office for Civil Rights for more information about obligations and prohibitions under federal civil rights laws at http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/office/about/rgn-hqaddresses.html or call 1-800-368-1019 or TDD 1-800-537-7697. Also note it is an HHS Departmental goal to ensure access to quality, culturally competent care, including long-term services and supports, for vulnerable populations. For further guidance on providing culturally and linguistically appropriate services, recipients should review the National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care at http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/omh/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlid=53.

    Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

    The following special terms of award are in addition to, and not in lieu of, otherwise applicable U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) administrative guidelines, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) grant administration regulations at 45 CFR Part 75, and other HHS, PHS, and NIH grant administration policies.

    The administrative and funding instrument used for this program will be the cooperative agreement, an "assistance" mechanism (rather than an "acquisition" mechanism), in which substantial NIH programmatic involvement with the awardees is anticipated during the performance of the activities. Under the cooperative agreement, the NIH purpose is to support and stimulate the recipients' activities by involvement in and otherwise working jointly with the award recipients in a partnership role; it is not to assume direction, prime responsibility, or a dominant role in the activities. Consistent with this concept, the dominant role and prime responsibility resides with the awardees for the project as a whole, although specific tasks and activities may be shared among the awardees and the NIH as defined below.

    Primary responsibilities of the PD(s)/PI(s):

    The PD(s)/PI(s) will have primary authority and responsibility to define objectives and approaches, and to plan, conduct, analyze, and publish results, interpretations, and conclusions of studies conducted under this program. The PD(s)/PI(s) assume responsibility and accountability to the applicant organization officials and to the NCI for the performance and proper conduct of the research supported by the U24 award.

    The PD(s)/PI(s) of each funded award will be also be expected to work closely with the NCI Program staff in project coordination and management as described under “NCI Staff Responsibilities”. A Steering Committee (SC) will be formed involving the PD(s)/PI(s) of each award as voting members of the SC, and will have a voting rights for how the SC is conducted. Each team will have two votes. The PD(s)/PI(s) and other funded investigators will be expected to participate in the SC and any other cross team  Working Groups (WG's) that may be formed addressing specific targeted research areas common to all the U24's. One objective of the SC and any WG's will be to explore how to develop a consensus on the best means for the design and implementation of quantitative imaging methods for the planned co-clinical trials, the development of the web accessible research resources and the planned outreach strategy to the research community where appropriate. The SC will also interact with the Oncology Models Forum (OMF) to ensure that validated and credentialed mouse models are employed in the planned co-clinical trials for each U24. The SC will also be expected to interact with the Quantitative Imaging Network (QIN) to explore best practices for QI methods for clinical trials. The SC will be expected to plan annual meetings and, where appropriate, joint annual meetings with the OMF and/or the QIN.

    NIH staff have substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the normal stewardship role in awards, as described below:

    A designated NCI Program Staff member, acting as a Project Scientist, will have substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the normal stewardship role in awards.

    Specifically, the NCI Project Scientists will:

    • Participate in the above SC to help coordinate the management of the planned network, and targeted WG's as described above. The NCI program staff will collectively have one vote on the SC. The NCI staff will advise the PD(s)/PI(s) to explore network wide consensus approaches for quantitative imaging methods for each planned co-clinical trial, the design and implementation of the web accessible research resources, and the outreach strategy. The NCI program staff will in consultation with the PD(s)/PI(s) set specific research milestone to be met for each year of the award. In addition, NCI program staff will assist the PD(s)/PI(s) in the development of annual reports and annual meeting as described above.
    • NCI staff members who are substantially involved in the program activities will not attend peer review meetings of renewal and/or supplemental applications. If such participation is essential, these individuals will seek NCI waiver according to the NCI procedures for management of conflict of interest.
    • Additionally, an NCI Program staff member acting as the Program Official will be responsible for the normal scientific and programmatic stewardship of the awards and will be named in the award notice.

    Areas of Joint Responsibility:

    Given that the NCI staff members will assist the awardees in various areas, frequent and regular interactions are anticipated between NCI Project Scientist(s) and the PD(s)/PI(s). For example, the awardees and the NCI staff members will collaborate on planning, preparing, and convening the network annual meetings.

    The NCI Project Scientist and the PD/PI's will jointly represent the program and participate in appropriate network wide activities

    Dispute Resolution:

    Every effort will be made to air scientific differences in a constructive and open way to achieve consensus on measures, analytic approaches, and science. Any disagreements that may arise in scientific or programmatic matters (within the scope of the award) between award recipients and the NIH may be brought to Dispute Resolution, when they cannot be resolve satisfactorily within the structure of the cooperative agreement. A Dispute Resolution Panel composed of three members will be convened. It will have three members: a designee of the Steering Committee chosen without NIH staff voting, one NIH designee, and a third designee with expertise in the relevant area who is chosen by the other two; in the case of individual disagreement, the first member may be chosen by the individual awardee. This special dispute resolution procedure does not alter the awardee's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in accordance with PHS regulation 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D and DHHS regulation 45 CFR Part 16.

    3. Reporting

    When multiple years are involved, awardees will be required to submit the Research Performance Progress Report (RPPR) annually and financial statements as required in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    A final progress report, invention statement, and the expenditure data portion of the Federal Financial Report are required for closeout of an award, as described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (Transparency Act), includes a requirement for awardees of Federal grants to report information about first-tier subawards and executive compensation under Federal assistance awards issued in FY2011 or later.  All awardees of applicable NIH grants and cooperative agreements are required to report to the Federal Subaward Reporting System (FSRS) available at www.fsrs.gov on all subawards over $25,000.  See the NIH Grants Policy Statement for additional information on this reporting requirement.

    In accordance with the regulatory requirements provided at 45 CFR 75.113 and Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75, recipients that have currently active Federal grants, cooperative agreements, and procurement contracts from all Federal awarding agencies with a cumulative total value greater than $10,000,000 for any period of time during the period of performance of a Federal award, must report and maintain the currency of information reported in the System for Award Management (SAM) about civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings in connection with the award or performance of a Federal award that reached final disposition within the most recent five-year period.  The recipient must also make semiannual disclosures regarding such proceedings. Proceedings information will be made publicly available in the designated integrity and performance system (currently FAPIIS).  This is a statutory requirement under section 872 of Public Law 110-417, as amended (41 U.S.C. 2313).  As required by section 3010 of Public Law 111-212, all information posted in the designated integrity and performance system on or after April 15, 2011, except past performance reviews required for Federal procurement contracts, will be publicly available.  Full reporting requirements and procedures are found in Appendix XII to 45 CFR Part 75 – Award Term and Conditions for Recipient Integrity and Performance Matters.

    Section VII. Agency Contacts

    We encourage inquiries concerning this funding opportunity and welcome the opportunity to answer questions from potential applicants.

    Application Submission Contacts

    eRA Service Desk (Questions regarding ASSIST, eRA Commons registration, submitting and tracking an application, documenting system problems that threaten submission by the due date, post submission issues)
    Finding Help Online: https://grants.nih.gov/support/ (preferred method of contact)
    Telephone: 301-402-7469 or 866-504-9552 (Toll Free)

    Grants.gov Customer Support (Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and submission, downloading forms and application packages)
    Contact Center Telephone: 800-518-4726

    Email: support@grants.gov

    GrantsInfo (Questions regarding application instructions and process, finding NIH grant resources)
    Email: GrantsInfo@nih.gov (preferred method of contact)
    Telephone: 301-945-7573

    Scientific/Research Contact(s)

    Huiming Zhang, Ph.D.
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-5979
    Email: zhanghui@mail.nih.gov

    Cheryl Marks, Ph.D.
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-6217
    Email: marksc@mail.nih.gov

    Richard V Mazurchuk, Ph.D.
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-7126
    Email: mazurchukrv@mail.nih.gov

    Peer Review Contact(s)

    Referral Officer
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-6390
    Email: ncirefof@dea.nci.nih.gov

    Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

    Shane Woodward
    National Cancer Institute (NCI)
    Telephone: 240-276-6303
    Email: woodwars@mail.nih.gov

    Section VIII. Other Information

    Recently issued trans-NIH policy notices may affect your application submission. A full list of policy notices published by NIH is provided in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts. All awards are subject to the terms and conditions, cost principles, and other considerations described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement.

    Authority and Regulations

    Awards are made under the authorization of Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as amended (42 USC 241 and 284) and under Federal Regulations 42 CFR Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 75.

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