Department of Health and Human Services
Part 1. Overview Information

 

Participating Organization(s)

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Components of Participating Organizations

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

Funding Opportunity Title

Revision Applications for the U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research (R01)

Activity Code

R01 Research Project Grant

Announcement Type

New

Related Notices

None

Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number

RFA-AI-16-082

Companion Funding Opportunity

RFA-AI-16-083, U01 Research Project - Cooperative Agreements

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

93.855, 93.856; 93.393, 93.399; 93.865; 93.242  

Funding Opportunity Purpose

The purpose of this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to provide funding to expand specific activities under the U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research (R01). The purpose of the opportunities under the revision application is to enhance the pool of investigators in South Africa who are from underrepresented backgrounds in the country's workforce and who are engaged in collaborative research activities in the areas of tuberculosis (TB), HIV/AIDS biomedical and behavioral science, and HIV-related co-morbidities, including malignancies.    

Key Dates

 

Posted Date

December 8, 2016

Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)

February 28, 2017

Letter of Intent Due Date(s)

February 28, 2017  

Application Due Date(s)

March 28, 2017 , by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of non-AIDS applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on this date .

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)

March 28, 2017, by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of AIDS and AIDS-related applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on this date.

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.

Scientific Merit Review

June 2017

Advisory Council Review

October 2017  

Earliest Start Date

December 2017 

Expiration Date

March 29, 2017  

Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the Research (R) Instructions in 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.

  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. Go to Grants.gov to download an application package to complete the application forms offline or create a Workspace to complete the forms online; submit your application to Grants.gov; and track your application in eRA Commons.
Learn more about the various submission options.

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 provide funding to expand specific activities under the U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research (R01).  The goal of the revision application is to enhance the pool of investigators in South Africa who are from underrepresented backgrounds in the country's workforce and who are engaged in research collaboration in support of emerging public health needs in the areas of tuberculosis (TB), HIV/AIDS biomedical and behavioral science, and HIV-related co-morbidities, including malignancies.  For the purpose of this FOA, underrepresented scientists in South Africa are defined as members of the South African Black, Coloured and Indian population groups and/or scientists employed by South African historically disadvantaged institutions (HDIs) and/or other Universities of Technology, as defined in the Eligible Individual section.

Background

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) of the United States (U.S.) Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) supports international collaborative biomedical research to advance science and expand biomedical knowledge.

Scientific cooperation between the U.S. and the Republic of South Africa was initiated in 1995 and has grown in recent years.  Recognizing that enhanced cooperative biomedical research would be of mutual benefit to the U.S. and South Africa, the NIH Director and the President of the Medical Research Council of the Republic of South Africa (SAMRC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in January, 2013 to develop a new U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research.  A working group, made up of members from both the NIH and SAMRC, developed strategic plans for collaboration.  Both the NIH and SAMRC have allocated resources to support joint activities pursued under this program.

The intent of awards made under RFA-AI-14-009 was to foster, stimulate, and/or expand basic, translational, behavioral and applied research that would advance scientific discovery and engage U.S. and South African researchers working collaboratively in the areas of TB, HIV/AIDS biomedical and behavioral science, and HIV-related co-morbidities, including malignancies. Awards made in response to RFA-AI-14-009 reflect the highest possible scientific standards, as well as shared interests, international and local public health needs and priorities, and involve mutually advantageous collaborations among institutions, including participating communities and other partners.  

Objectives

The primary objective of this FOA is to broaden participation in the U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research to include additional scientific exploration and to enhance the pool of investigators in South Africa who are underrepresented in the biomedical research workforce in South Africa. Current U.S. and South African awardees through RFA-AI-14-009 as well as South African scientists with direct NIH funding may apply for supplementary funds. The goal of this program is to support collaborative research and other activities designed to enhance the research skills of underrepresented scientists participating in South African research, for example: scientist exchanges, specific scientific skill-building activities, and studies to address emerging public health needs in the areas of TB, HIV/AIDS biomedical and behavioral science, and HIV-related co-morbidities, including malignancies.

In spite of tremendous advancements in scientific research, information, educational and research opportunities are not equally available to all. NIH encourages institutions to diversify their student and faculty populations to enhance the participation of individuals from groups identified as underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral and social sciences. Fostering diversity by addressing underrepresentation in the scientific research workforce is a key component of the NIH strategy to identify, develop, support and maintain the quality of our scientific human capital (NOT-OD-15-053). NIH's ability to help ensure that the nation remains a global leader in scientific discovery and innovation is dependent upon a pool of highly talented scientists from diverse backgrounds, particularly those from underrepresented groups, who will help to further NIH's mission.

Research shows that diverse teams working together and capitalizing on innovative ideas and distinct perspectives outperform homogenous teams. Scientists and trainees from diverse backgrounds and life experiences bring different perspectives, creativity, and individual enterprise to address complex scientific problems. There are many benefits that flow from a diverse NIH-supported scientific workforce, including: fostering scientific innovation, contributing to robust learning environments, improving the quality of the researchers, advancing the likelihood that underserved or health disparity populations participate in, and benefit from health research, and enhancing public trust.

In South Africa, scientists from underrepresented backgrounds are defined as South African Black, Coloured and Indian population groups.   South African historically disadvantaged institutions (HDIs) and other Universities of Technology are the predominant institutions in the country that focus on training underrepresented scientists.  The South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) and the South Africa Department of Higher Education and Training have a long history of prioritizing support for underrepresented scientists in the South African research community.  One of the major tenets of these groups is the development of research capacity.  The SAMRC is addressing transformation, bringing in medical scientists and early stage investigators who reflect the diversity of the country, both by race, gender and geography, by specifying funding for HDIs as well as crafting a new model for funding early stage investigators with Self-Initiated Research (SIR) grants.  More information can be found in the SAMRC’s Strategic Plan (http://www.mrc.ac.za/publications/MRCStrategicPlan.pdf) and Annual Performance Plan ( http://www.mrc.ac.za/publications/MRCAnnualPerformancePlan.pdf).

This FOA will provide supplementary funds to current awardees to encourage adding or expanding activities focused on establishing or enhancing substantive research engagement for underrepresented scientists, within South Africa, particularly those previously lacking this expertise. This group of scientists (scientists from the South African Black, Coloured and Indian population groups and scientists from South African HDIs and other South African Universities of Technology) has been identified by the SAMRC as underrepresented in the biomedical workforce of South Africa.

Specific Research Areas of interest include:

HIV Transmission and prevention

  • Understanding HIV transmission dynamics.
  • Informing development of new biomedical prevention strategies through understanding host/virus interactions associated with HIV acquisition, establishment of infection and disease progression.
  • Prevention of mother-to-child HIV-transmission (MTCT) in the era of South Africa “Option B” policy.
  • Effects of maternal HIV infection and antiretroviral treatment on HIV-exposed uninfected children.
  • HIV prevention particularly in young/adolescent women.
  • Combination prevention strategies.
  • The role of food insecurity and nutrition in prevention, care and treatment of HIV/AIDS.

HIV/AIDS Treatment and Care Continuum

  • Best approaches to optimizing durability of ART regimens beyond the first line regimen. For example, how can adherence best be supported to prevent regimen failure? Can resuming second line regimens be successful with adherence support when there is loss of virologic control, rather than switching to third line regimens?
  • Research towards a cure for HIV/AIDS including pediatric HIV “functional cure.”
  • Identification of infected individuals and linkage to and retention in medical care.
  • Research on adherence to HIV treatment, including use of mobile technologies.
  • Approaches to monitoring antiretroviral therapy (ART) treatment.
  • Interplay or impact of non-communicable diseases with HIV disease and its management.
  • Chronic inflammation and aging in treated HIV disease.
  • HIV and AIDS-associated Cancers
  • Epidemiology of HIV-associated cancers in the era of antiretroviral therapy.
  • Studies that identify biological differences between AIDS-defining and non-AIDS defining cancers.
  • Understanding interactions of HIV with human papilloma virus (HPV), human herpes viruses (EBV and HHV-8), hepatitis B and C viruses, herpes simplex virus (HSV) and other oncogenic viral co-infections that lead to increased cancer risks.
  • Studies on pathogenesis and pathobiology of HIV-associated cancers.
  • Strategies for optimizing diagnosis, prevention and treatment of HIV-associated cancers.
  • Studies on complications and outcomes of treating cancers in HIV-infected vs. HIV uninfected populations.

Tuberculosis

  • Research on TB pathogenesis and biomarkers.
  • Latent TB infection, pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment.
  • Scale-up of TB prevention and treatment strategies.
  • Novel approaches and better understanding of current modalities.
  • TB prevention.
  • TB treatment.
  • Discovery and development of point-of-care diagnostics and diagnostic strategies.
  • TB epidemiology including novel surveillance methods, such as mobile technologies and mathematical modeling.
  • Maternal and pediatric TB.  

Examples of research activities that may be addressed include, but are not limited to, the following:  

  • Develop and implement collaborative research projects conducted by underrepresented scientists with research mentorship provided by current NIH awardees.
  • Design and implement research opportunities for underrepresented scientists through scientist exchanges between underrepresented scientists and experts in the fields of TB, HIV/AIDS biomedical and behavioral science, and HIV-related co-morbidities, including malignancies.
  • Conduct workshops or symposia to bring together underrepresented scientists, and expert researchers, and clinicians performing research in these fields, to disseminate research findings, exchange experiences related to practical research in these fields, and apply appropriate research approaches and techniques to research of importance to South African public health needs.
  • Development and implementation of collaborative research projects conducted by the underrepresented scientists with mentorship provided by current NIH awardees.

Scientists at historically disadvantaged institutions may receive funding to support within-scope research projects at their location or at the current awardee sites. For research that includes human subjects, the grantee and subcomponent must comply with U.S. human subjects policies (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps/HTML5/section_4/4.1_public_policy_requirements_and_objectives.htm?Highlight=human subjects).  Advising in the conduct of research would be expected.

Workshops or symposia may be held to bring together individuals at underserved/disadvantaged institutions/organizations to learn about research topics of importance to South African public health need and to disseminate research findings.

The following will not be supported under this FOA. 

  • Clinical trials (stage I, II, III, or IV).
  • Any research with select agents.
  • Applications without a current South African awardee under RFA-AI-14-009 or an NIH-funded South African awardee named as the PD/PI on the revision application.
  • Applications that do not include underrepresented scientists from the target groups.

Support for U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research is available under two separate companion FOAs that are being published concurrently. This FOA is soliciting for revisions to the R01 applications funded under RFA-AI-14-009 whereas the companion U01 will support revision applications to South African PIs with established collaborations with NIH Intramural scientists (RFA-AI-14-018).

For more information please refer to specific Questions and Answers sites for the FOAs: https://www.niaid.nih.gov/grants-contracts/questions-and-answers-rfa-ai-16-082

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

Section II. Award Information
Funding Instrument

Grant: A support mechanism providing money, property, or both to an eligible entity to carry out an approved project or activity.

Application Types Allowed

Revision

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

Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

Issuing IC and partner components intend to commit an estimated total of $3 million per year to fund 10-15 awards in FY 2017 for applications in response to this FOA and the companion FOA (Revision Applications for U.S.-South Africa Program for Collaborative Biomedical Research (R01)).

Award Budget

Application budgets are limited to $250,000 per year in total costs for up to two years. Applicants must have at least one year of funding remaining on their grant at the time of submission. 

A minimum of 67% of the total cost budget should be apportioned to activities that will be conducted in South Africa.

Indirect cost for foreign grantees are limited to 8%. F&A costs requested by consortium participants are not included in the direct cost limitation, See NOT-OD-05-004, November 2, 2004.

Award Project Period

Applicants may request support for up to 2 years, not to exceed the remaining number of years on the parent grant. The parent grant must be active when the application is submitted. Awards will be made as revisions to the parent R01 and cannot exceed the project period of the parent award.   

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

Current U.S. and South African awardees through RFA-AI-14-009 as well as South African scientists with direct NIH funding may apply for supplementary funds. To further the objectives of this FOA, applicants are highly encouraged to include scientists at South African HDIs and other South African Universities of Technology and/or scientists from the South African Black, Coloured or Indian population groups as collaborators.

Foreign Institutions

Non-domestic (non-U.S.) Entities (Foreign Institutions) are 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 not 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.

For the Revision application, the current South African contact PD(s)/PI(s) of the South African Institutional award should be listed as the PD(s)/PI(s), along with the collaborating scientist as the collaborating PD/PI or a collaborating partner in the application. U.S. PD(s)/PI(s), funded under RFA-AI-14-009 should be listed as collaborating partners.   South African PD(s)/PI(s) and collaborators must be either permanently employed at an eligible South Africa research institution or be in a long-term contract (at least for the minimum of the duration of the project). Note that postgraduate students, full or part-time, are not eligible to serve as PD(s)/PI(s) but they may serve as collaborating PD/PIs or partners. South African PD(s)/PI(s) must be active NIH R01 awardees funded under RFA-AI-14-009 or be the recipient of direct NIH funding. To further the objectives of this FOA, applicants are highly encouraged to include underrepresented scientists (from the South African Black, Coloured or Indian population groups and/or scientists from South African historically disadvantaged institutions (HDIs) or scientists from other South African Universities of Technology) to serve as PD(s)/PI(s) or collaborating partners.

These eligibility requirements are intended to target funds to relatively under-resourced institutions with a demonstrated commitment to underrepresented South African scientists in biomedical research.

The following universities have been designated by the SAMRC as historically disadvantaged institutions:

  • University of Fort Hare
  • University of Limpopo
  • Walter Sisulu University
  • University of Venda
  • University of Zululand
  • University of the Western Cape
  • Mangosuthu University of Technology
  • Sefako Makgatho Health Science University

South African Universities of Technology:

  • Cape Peninsula University of Technology
  • Central University of Technology
  • Durban University of Technology
  • University of Mpumalanga
  • Sol Plaatje University
  • Tshwane University of Technology
  • Vaal University of Technology

The South African awardee PD(s)/PI(s) must be the contact PD(s)/PI(s).

South African PD(s)/PI(s) and South African collaborators must be either permanently employed at an eligible South Africa research institution or be in a long-term contract (at least for the minimum of the duration of the project). Note that postgraduate students, full or part-time, are not eligible to serve as PD(s)/PI(s) or collaborating partners.

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 Research (R) Instructions in 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:

Nancy Touchette
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Telephone: 301-451-2486
Email: ntouchette@niaid.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.

Facilities and Other Resources: Include a description of available resources associated with the expansion of scope proposed, naming which collaborative partner is contributing which resources, and a description of how resources will be shared (e.g., individual contributions of specific reagents, patient samples, compounds, and access to populations for epidemiologic studies).

Other Attachments: Provide the following additional materials specified below in support of the application.

Provide a PDF file with the name “Collaboration Plan”. Applicants should include a Collaboration Plan clearly defining the interactions between the parent awardees (the South African PD(s)/PI(s)) and, if applicable, the underrepresented scientists at the HDIs or other Universities of Technology and the U.S. PD(s)/PI(s) or collaborator in terms of plans for communication among the groups, processes for making decisions on scientific direction and planning activities, and procedures for resolving conflicts. This file should not duplicate what is covered in the Multi PD/PI leadership plan but should discuss the interactions between the PD/PI and the underrepresented scientist.  

SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile

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

R&R Budget

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

Within the budget justification, applicants must specify how at least 67% of the funds will be used to support work to be performed at South African institutions/organizations.

Budget request amounts should include only the new work proposed under the revision application. Do not include funds for activities ongoing and supported by the parent award.

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: 

Specific Aims:  Applicants should clearly describe the specific aims of the project and indicate which partner of the collaboration (the South African PD(s)/PI(s), the U.S. PD(s)/PI(s) or collaborating partner, and the underrepresented scientists) will be responsible for accomplishing each of the aims.

Research Strategy: The revision application should contain sufficient information from the original grant application to allow evaluation of the proposed supplement in relation to the goals of the original applications. 

Provide a description of the plans and goals of the research or research activities leading to the establishment or enhancement of substantive research opportunities to benefit research opportunities for underrepresented scientists.

Describe the research opportunities or research project and how it will address critical research needs of the underrepresented scientist.

Outline the combined roles and responsibilities of all participating partners in the research, including contingency plans addressing solutions to setbacks or delays.  

Include a financial management plan for the distribution and monitoring of funds to the institution/organization of the underrepresented scientists.

Letters of Support:  Applicants from South Africa (current awardee, as well as those from the institution of the underrepresented scientist) should include a Letter of Support from their Institution confirming NRF South African eligibility status.

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.

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 Assignment Request Form

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

Foreign Institutions

Foreign (non-U.S.) institutions must follow policies described in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, and procedures for foreign institutions described throughout the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.

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 and responsiveness by components of participating organizations, NIH. Applications that are incomplete, non-compliant and/or nonresponsive will not be reviewed.

Post Submission Materials

Applicants are required to follow the instructions for post-submission materials, as described in the 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.

 
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 project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress in the field? Is there a strong scientific premise for the project? If the aims of the project are achieved, how will scientific knowledge, technical capability, and/or clinical practice be improved? How will successful completion of the aims change the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services, or preventative interventions that drive this field?

Does the scope of the revision project provide sufficient detail regarding the plans and goals of the research project or collaborative activities to establish or enhance substantive research opportunities for underrepresented scientists within South Africa lacking this expertise? Will the proposed activity address a gap in a research opportunities for underrepresented scientists and the disadvantaged institutions?  

Investigator(s)

Are the PD(s)/PI(s), collaborators, and other researchers well suited to the project? If Early Stage Investigators or New Investigators, or in the early stages of independent careers, do they have appropriate experience and training? If established, have they demonstrated an ongoing record of accomplishments that have advanced their field(s)? If the project is collaborative or multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise; are their leadership approach, governance and organizational structure appropriate for the project?

Does the application include at least one underrepresented scientist collaborating PD/PI or partner in the proposed research project or collaborative research activities? Does the application include appropriate advising and skill enhancement?     

Innovation

Does the application challenge and seek to shift current research or clinical practice paradigms by utilizing novel theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions? Are the concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions novel to one field of research or novel in a broad sense? Is a refinement, improvement, or new application of theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions proposed?   

Approach

Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project? Have the investigators presented strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased approach, as appropriate for the work proposed? Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented? If the project is in the early stages of development, will the strategy establish feasibility and will particularly risky aspects be managed? Have the investigators presented adequate plans to address relevant biological variables, such as sex, for studies in vertebrate animals or human subjects? 

Will the plans and goals of the revision application achieve the purpose of increasing the participation of underrepresented scientists in South Africa?

Does the financial management plan clearly articulate the roles and responsibilities of the parent South African PD(s)/PI(s) awardee and the underrepresented scientist or collaborator in the management of fiscal resources?

Are the planned activities in support of a collaborative research project or research activities sufficient to broaden understanding of the overall process to conduct research by underrepresented scientists and within disadvantaged institutions? Will the proposed activities help strengthen grant management and oversight at the historically disadvantaged institution?

Is there a contingency plan and is it feasible?

Does the Collaboration Plan clearly define the interactions between the parent awardees (the U.S. PD(s)/PI(s) or collaborating partner and South African PD(s)/PI(s)) and the underrepresented scientists in terms of how information will be exchanged among the groups, processes for making decisions on scientific direction, and procedures for resolving conflicts?

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 scientific environment in which the work will be done contribute to the probability of success? Are the institutional support, equipment and other physical resources available to the investigators adequate for the project proposed? Will the project benefit from unique features of the scientific environment, subject populations, or collaborative arrangements?   

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

Not Applicable

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

Reviewers will assess whether the project presents special opportunities for furthering research programs through the use of unusual talent, resources, populations, or environmental conditions that exist in other countries and either are not readily available in the United States or augment existing U.S. resources.

Select Agent Research

Not Applicable

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 NIH Center for Scientific Review, 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.

Appeals of initial peer review will not be accepted for applications submitted in response to this FOA.

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 appropriate national Advisory Council or 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.

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.

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.

Cooperative Agreement Terms and Conditions of Award

Not Applicable

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: http://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: 301-710-0267

Scientific/Research Contact(s)

Brian Remortel, MPH
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Telephone: 240-292-4816
Email: Brian.Remortel@niaid.nih.gov

Polly Sager, Ph.D.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Telephone: 301-496-1884
Email: PSAGER@niaid.nih.gov

Geraldina Dominguez, Ph.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Telephone: 301-496-3204
Email: domingug@mail.nih.gov

Rohan Hazra, M.D.
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Telephone: 301-435-6868
Email: hazrar@mail.nih.gov

Christopher Gordon, Ph.D.
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Telephone: 240-627-3867
Email: cgordon1@mail.nih.gov

Peer Review Contact(s)

Robert Freund, Ph.D.
Center for Scientific Review (CSR)
Telephone: 301-435-1050
Email: freundr@csr.nih.gov

Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Philip Smith
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Telephone: 240-669-2948
Email: philip.smith2@nih.gov

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

Bryan Clark
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) Telephone: 301-435-6975
Email: clarkb1@mail.nih.gov

Rita Sisco
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Telephone: 301-443-2805
Email: siscor@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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