National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
The Multidisciplinary Approach to the Study of Chronic Pelvic Pain (MAPP) Research Network conducts multi-center studies of urologic chronic pelvic pain syndrome (UCPPS), a term used to encompass interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS) and chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS). The goal of the MAPP Network is to provide new insights into underlying pathophysiology, natural history, clinical phenotype, and risk factors as a foundation for future clinical intervention efforts and ultimately to improve clinical management. The MAPP Research Network is currently comprised of nine Discovery Sites, a Data Coordination Core (DCC), and a Tissue and Technology Core (TATC). The purpose of this Limited Competition Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) is to invite an application from the current MAPP Network TATC for an additional three-year project period. During this period, the MAPP Network will continue collection of longitudinal phenotypic data and biological samples from UCPPS participants currently enrolled in the Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study and continue to conduct highly-collaborative, integrated data analyses for identification of new insights into UCPPS.
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.
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.
The Multidisciplinary Approach to the Study of Chronic Pelvic Pain (MAPP) Research Network was established by the NIDDK in 2009 as a novel study of Urologic Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (UCPPS), a term encompassing Interstitial Cystitis/Bladder Pain Syndrome (IC/BPS) and Chronic Prostatitis/Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome (CP/CPPS). The MAPP Network approaches UCPPS as a systemic disorder, potentially involving both urologic and non-urologic systems. Network investigators with diverse expertise perform highly integrated, broad phenotypic characterizations of UCPPS incorporating extensive urologic and non-urologic clinical measures, functional/structural neuroimaging, biomarker and the microbiome studies, quantitative sensory testing, and investigations of relationship between UCPPS and common co-morbid disorders, among other characterizations. All efforts address the MAPP Network’s primary goal to describe UCPPS phenotype and underlying pathophysiology to inform future clinical study (trials) design and ultimately improve patient care.
In the MAPP Network’s first Project Period (2009-2014) the study group conducted the central Trans-MAPP Epidemiology/Phenotyping Study. This represented a comprehensive, systemic characterization of UCPPS participants and control cohorts at baseline and UCPPS participants during a 12-month follow-up using diverse clinical and biologic measures. This data continues to be analyzed and yield valuable insights. Several key findings include, identification of UCPPS sub-groups based on pain and urologic profiles and longitudinal symptom trends, patient-centric insights into symptom flare, central nervous system changes that differentiate patients/controls and associate with progression and clinical sub-groups, risk factors for symptom worsening, and immune system correlates with pain profiles, as well as development of improved clinical outcomes.
The MAPP Network’s second Project Period (2014-2019) central protocol, the Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study involves integrated phenotyping of UCPPS participants at baseline and during a 36-month longitudinal, observational period using expanded measures to further refine UCPPS subgrouping, identify symptom trends, and discover associated risk factors and biological correlates to progression profiles. Baseline and longitudinal phenotyping includes diverse measures informed by and extending beyond those from the MAPP Network’s first project period. Also, integrated within the central protocol are novel assessments of symptoms using mobile device technology (the [M]APP sub-study) and studies to correlate clinical and biological profiles with response to selected UCPPS therapies (the Analysis of Therapies during Longitudinal Assessment of Symptoms [ATLAS] study). UCPPS enrollment is expected to end in 2018, with longitudinal follow-up continuing through the current Project Period ending in 2019.
The MAPP Network’s novel study design represents a unique opportunity to collect robust, multi-domain baseline and longitudinal clinical and biologic phenotypic information on UCPPS participants. In addition, the assembled multi-disciplinary expertise and numerous established Working Groups allow for broad, collaborative, and integrated data analysis to provide unprecedented new insights into UCPPS. The Network’s analytic methods include clustering approaches that combine multiple domains of phenotypic data from participants.
This Limited Competition Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) will support the MAPP Network Tissue and Technology Core (TATC) for an additional three-year Project Period. During this period the MAPP Network will continue collection of longitudinal phenotyping data and biological samples from UCPPS participants currently enrolled in the Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study protocol for an additional 12 months beyond the current Project Period and continue collaborative, integrated data analysis for identification of new insights into UCPPS. All efforts will address the MAPP Network’s central goals of informing future clinical studies (trials) and improving clinical management, as well as promote new investigator-initiated research studies that leverage MAPP Network resources and build upon Network insights.
A major objective of this FOA is to support the MAPP Network Tissue and Technology Core’s (TATC) scientific activities during an extended 12-month window for collection of longitudinal phenotypic measures and biological samples for UCPPS participants enrolled in the Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study. This is expected to greatly enhance the highly unique longitudinal data and biological sample sets through increasing the number of UCPPS participants completing the full 36-month protocol and ensuring a minimum of 18 months of longitudinal phenotypic information on nearly all participants. Longitudinal phenotyping will also be extended for the sub-set of the UCPPS participants re-enrolled in the MAPP Network’s Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study following their participation in the Network’s first Project Period protocol (e.g., ultimately yielding up to 7-8 years of longitudinal data for some). Extending the window for longitudinal phenotyping also allows for additional participation in the ATLAS sub-study, thus enriching that dataset.
Another major objective of the FOA is to support the MAPP Network TATC’s scientific activities in highly-collaborative data-analyses designed to yield new and clinically-significant insights into UCPPS, including comprehensive assessments of UCPPS that uniquely integrate diverse clinical and biological variables. Such a thorough analysis is needed to appropriately mine the complex clinical and associated biological data collected in the MAPP Network studies, especially the vast baseline and longitudinal data amassed in the MAPP Network’s second project period.
During this three-year Project Period MAPP Network TATC investigators are expected to continue to foster collaborations with the outside community in development of new studies that leverage the unique resources of the MAPP Network and to further disseminate MAPP Network insights to broad audiences. When appropriate, MAPP Network investigators will continue to collaborate with additional NIDDK supported multi-center collaborative groups, including the Symptoms of Lower Urinary Tract Dysfunction Research Network (LURN) and the Prevention of Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms (PLUS) Research Consortium. The NIDDK Technology Advancement Office must be consulted early in the process when an NIDDK-funded study enters into a collaboration agreement and this consult will be facilitated by an NIDDK Program Official. During the three-year Project Period, the TATC will work with the NIDDK Central Repository to coordinate procedures for coding, shipping, processing, receipt, storage, and sharing of study biological samples that are to be maintained in the NIDDK Central Repository for eventual distribution.
Studies involving animal models are not within scope of this FOA. Basic science research efforts, such as interrogation of biological samples, should not be proposed as part of the application. Data analyses strategies that integrate available biological information or insights originating from animal model studies are permitted.
The MAPP Network is comprised of six major Discovery Sites awarded through RFA-DK-13-507 (see companion announcement RFA-DK-18-513), which perform clinical phenotyping of UCPPS participants and participate in collaborative data analysis and three Project-Driven Discovery Sites awarded through RFA-DK-13-025; a Data Coordination Core (DCC) (see companion announcement RFA-DK-18-514) that provides broad expertise for data analyses and coordinates network studies and activities; and a Tissue and Technology Core (TATC) (see companion announcement RFA-DK-18-515) that provides oversight for biological sample collection, banking, and distribution, as well as scientific and technical expertise for analyses of all biological samples and resulting data. The MAPP Network also includes a number of integrated Ancillary Studies and sub-contracted studies that perform complementary, collaborative research within the study group.
A MAPP Research Network Steering Committee will be composed of Discovery Site and Core Site Directors and NIDDK Program Staff. The Steering Committee will meet regularly in-person and/or by teleconference as a whole and in sub-working groups to conduct MAPP Research Network studies, review progress, discuss results, interpret findings, and collaboratively develop manuscripts for peer reviewed publications. The Steering Committee Chairman will lead an Executive Committee that will be comprised of the Chairman of the Steering Committee, representatives from the Core Sites, NIDDK staff, and additional MAPP Network investigators and support personnel, as needed. The Executive Committee will make operational decisions for the MAPP Network between Steering Committee meetings by means of telephone conference calls.
The NIDDK will assist MAPP Network investigators in the development of MAPP Research Network study protocols; will monitor the progress of projects and functioning of all network activities; will assist investigators in the analysis and interpretation of MAPP Research Network data; and will aid in preparation of manuscripts for publication. The NIDDK will continue to utilize the External Experts Panel (EEP) to monitor research efforts and advise the Institute on the progress of network studies.
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.
The NIDDK intend to commit $300,000 in Fiscal Year 2019 to support the MAPP Research Network Tissue and Technology Core (TATC). Future years are contingent upon annual appropriation.
The TATC may request funds up to $200,000 in Direct Costs in the first year and up to $100,000 Direct Costs per year for each of year two and three of the three-year Project Period. The application budget for the MAPP Network Tissue and Technology Core (TATC) must reflect the actual needs of the proposed study.
The scope of the proposed study should determine the project period. The maximum project period is 3 years.
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.
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.
Only Program Director(s)/Principal Investigators (PDs/PIs) of the MAPP Network Tissue and Technology Core (TATC) supported through RFA-DK-13-507 are eligible to apply through this FOA. The TATC may utilize the Multiple Program Director/Principal Investigator (i.e. Multi-PD/PI) concept (see NOT-OD-06-036) to establish a collaborative team of two Program Directors/Principal Investigators who will serve as Co-Directors. The Director and/or Co-Directors forming a team may be changed from the current TATC Site leadership organization if a strong justification can be provided.
MAPP Research Network Sites are encouraged to include in their grant application the involvement of junior faculty and new investigators both in urological sciences and in related fields of study. Investigators may not be listed as participants in more than one application.
Because all relevant expertise may not be present at a single institution, investigators may establish a multi-disciplinary team through collaborations with researchers outside their own institution. Such arrangements must be highly justified and add important additional scientific capability to the MAPP Network and to meet the objectives in this FOA.
The NIH will not accept duplicate or highly overlapping applications under review at the same time. This means that the NIH will not accept:
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.
For information on Application Submission and Receipt, visit Frequently Asked Questions – Application Guide, Electronic Submission of Grant Applications.
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:
The letter of intent should be sent to:
John F. Connaughton, Ph.D.
Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.
Research Strategy: The MAPP Network TATC investigators should describe a plan for continued coordination of biological samples collections and management in support of the multi-site Trans-MAPP Symptom Patterns Study longitudinal phenotyping phase to be conducted during the first 12 months of the three-year project period. This should include but is not limited to coordination of collection, banking, annotation/blinding, and distribution of biological samples; coordination with the NIDDK Biorepository to develop and conduct procedures for eventual archiving and distribution of biological samples; and an overall strategy to support continued MAPP Network operations and collaborations to address the Network’s major goals.
The MAPP Network TATC investigators should describe a strategy for their scientific activities in collaborative data analysis during the three-year Project Period. Analyses should be designed to provide a strong evidence-based foundation for future UCPPS clinical studies/trials and address questions that may impact clinical management, including identification of clinically meaningful UCPPS sub-groups, new insights into underlying pathophysiology, and factors that predict progression and response to distinct therapy, among others. Strategies for developing a more comprehensive, systemic characterization of UCPPS that integrate multiple domains of clinical and biological phenotypic information are of highest priority.
The following modifications also apply:
Applicants are expected to register resources supported by this FOA with the NIDDK Information Network (dkNET) at https://dknet.org/ and use Research Resource Identifiers (RRID) assigned through dkNET in any publication supported by this FOA
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 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.
All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
Many NIH ICs encourage the use of common data elements (CDEs) in basic, clinical, and applied research, patient registries, and other human subject research to facilitate broader and more effective use of data and advance research across studies. CDEs are data elements that have been identified and defined for use in multiple data sets across different studies. Use of CDEs can facilitate data sharing and standardization to improve data quality and enable data integration from multiple studies and sources, including electronic health records. NIH ICs have identified CDEs for many clinical domains (e.g., neurological disease), types of studies (e.g. genome-wide association studies (GWAS)), types of outcomes (e.g., patient-reported outcomes), and patient registries (e.g., the Global Rare Diseases Patient Registry and Data Repository). NIH has established a “Common Data Element (CDE) Resource Portal" (http://cde.nih.gov/) to assist investigators in identifying NIH-supported CDEs when developing protocols, case report forms, and other instruments for data collection. The Portal provides guidance about and access to NIH-supported CDE initiatives and other tools and resources for the appropriate use of CDEs and data standards in NIH-funded research. Investigators are encouraged to consult the Portal and describe in their applications any use they will make of NIH-supported CDEs in their projects.
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.
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 proposed Center address the needs of the research network that it will coordinate? Is the scope of activities proposed for the Center appropriate to meet those needs? Will successful completion of the aims bring unique advantages or capabilities to the research network?
Specific to this FOA: If successful, would the study provide new and significant insights into the pathophysiology and natural history of UCPPS in men and women? Does the study have potential to inform on symptom variation and associated phenotypic factors? Does the study have the potential to provide insights that may inform the design of future clinical studies and ultimately clinical management? Do proposed studies build upon findings from previous project periods? Has adequate progress been made in the previous funding period in addressing the major goals of the MAPP Research Network?
Are the PD(s)/PI(s), collaborators, and other researchers well suited to the project? If Early Stage Investigators or those 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?
Are the PD(s)/PI(s) and other personnel well suited to their roles in the Center? Do they have appropriate experience and training, and have they demonstrated experience and an ongoing record of accomplishments in managing clinical research? Do the investigators demonstrate significant experience with coordinating collaborative research? If the Center is multi-PD/PI, do the investigators have complementary and integrated expertise and skills; is their organizational structure appropriate for the Center? Does the applicant have experience overseeing selection and management of subawards, if needed?
Specific to this FOA: Are personnel sufficiently justified for their roles in support of MAPP Network efforts for each year of the three-year project period they are proposed to participate?
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?
Does the application propose novel management strategies in coordinating the research network the Center 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 proposed scientific plan, if successful, have the potential to significantly increase and enhance our foundation of knowledge of UCPPS and offer insights that can inform future testing of potential therapies to prevent or treat relevant disorders?
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?
Are the overall strategy, operational plan, and organizational structure well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the goals of the research network the Center will serve? Will the investigators promote strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased scientific approach across the network, as appropriate for the work proposed? Are potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success presented? If the network is in the early stages of operation, does the proposed strategy adequately establish feasibility and manage the risks associated with the activities of the network? 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: Are the MAPP Research Network’s major scientific priorities adequately addressed? Does the TATC describe an adequate plan for continued coordination of biological samples collections and management in support of the multi-site Trans-MAPP Symptoms Patterns Study? Does the TATC describe a strategy for their scientific activities in collaborative data analyses during the three-year Project Period? Do any proposed subcontracts provide important additional expertise (e.g., clinical expertise in UCPPS) or functionality?
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?
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?
Will the institutional environment in which the Center will operate contribute to the probability of success in facilitating the research n?e?t?w?o?r?k? 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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
For Renewals, the committee will consider the progress made in the last funding period.
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).
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).
For consortia involving key biological and/or chemical resources, reviewers will comment on the brief plans proposed for identifying and ensuring the validity of those resources.
Reviewers will consider whether the budget and the requested period of support are fully justified and reasonable in relation to the proposed research.
Information regarding the disposition of applications is available 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.
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.
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.
The PD(s)/PI(s) will have the primary responsibility for:
1. Developing the research design and study protocol, including definition of objectives and approaches, sample size and power calculations, and establishing procedures for participant recruitment and follow-up, data collection, quality control, interim data and safety monitoring, final data analysis and interpretation, and publication of results.
2. Establishing a Steering Committee to implement, coordinate and manage the project(s). Awardee(s) will name investigators to serve as members on a Steering Committee and other subcommittees, as appropriate, meeting periodically. Awardees will be required to accept and implement the common protocol(s) and procedures approved by the Steering Committee.
3. Designating Protocol Chairs. The Program Directors/Principal Investigators (for studies involving multiple protocols) shall designate a single Protocol Chairperson (if the Program Director/Principal Investigator does not assume this role) for each protocol to be carried out by the study group. The Protocol Chairperson shall function as the scientific coordinator for the protocol and shall assume responsibility for obtaining approval to implement the protocol from the Steering Committee and for developing and monitoring the protocol. Significant modifications to approved protocols must be approved by the Steering Committee.
4. Implementing collection of data specified by the study protocol. For a multi-center study, each awardee/site is required to ensure that data will be submitted expeditiously to the Data Coordinating Center. Additionally, individual investigators/sites must demonstrate the ability to implement the strategy specifically designed for their individual study population.
5. Establishing procedures for data quality and completeness. Awardees are responsible for ensuring accurate and timely assessment of the progress of each study, including development of procedures to ensure that data collection and management are: (1) adequate for quality control and analysis; (2) for clinical trials, as simple as appropriate in order to facilitate cooperation/referral of study participants by physicians to avoid unnecessary expense; and (3) sufficiently staffed across the participating institutions. For research involving multiple sites, a plan for analysis of pooled data will be developed by the Steering Committee.
6. Submitting interim progress reports, when requested or agreed upon by both parties, to the NIDDK Program Official including as a minimum, summary data on protocol performance. For coordinated multiple awards or a multi-site single award, the NIDDK Program Official may require additional information from individual awardees/sites. Such reports are in addition to the required annual noncompeting continuation progress report.
7. Reporting of the study findings. Awardees will retain custody of and have primary rights to the data and software developed under these awards, subject to Government rights of access consistent with current DHHS, PHS, and NIH policies. The awardee must also be adherent to Study Publication and Presentation Policy. The NIDDK will have access to and may periodically review all data generated under an award. NIDDK staff may co-author publications of findings with awardees consistent with NIH and study policies.
8. Agree that any third-party (including both industry and academia) collaboration should be governed by a research collaboration agreement (e.g. Clinical Trial Agreement, Research Collaborative Agreement, Memorandum Of Understanding, etc.) with terms that ensure the collaboration is conducted in accordance with the Cooperative Agreement, applicable NIH/NIDDK policies and procedures. The NIDDK Program Official may consult with others at NIH including the NIDDK Technology Advancement Office.
9. Any involvement of a third party (including both industry and academia) in the study, including access to any study data; study results; using the name of the study; or the name of the NIH or NIDDK, is permitted only after written concurrence by the NIDDK Program Official who may consult with others at NIH including the NIDDK Technology Advancement Office.
10. Study investigators are required to publish and to release publicly and disseminate results and other products of the study, in accordance with study protocols and steering committee policies on publications.
11. Maintaining confidentiality of information: The awardee(s) will maintain the confidentiality of the information developed by the investigators (i.e., protocols, data analysis, conclusions, etc.) as well as proprietary information of a company collaborating with the study.
12. The NIDDK has established Central Biosample, Genetic, and Data Repositories for the archiving and storage of data and biosamples collected in large, multi-site studies funded by NIDDK. Prior to enrolling participants, the PI or his/her designee will coordinate with the NIDDK Central Repository to develop a Data Sharing Plan and prepare the collected data for eventual archiving and distribution. In addition, if applicable, the PI or his/her designee will work with the NIDDK Biosample Repository to coordinate procedures for coding, shipping, processing, receipt, storage, and sharing of study samples that are to be maintained in the Repository. All samples and data transferred to the Repositories will be under the custodianship of the NIDDK, although the study’s Steering Committee will have proprietary control of and exclusive access to the samples and data for an agreed-upon period of time. Subsequently samples and data will be available to the wider scientific community in accordance with the NIH policy on Data Sharing (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/data sharing/ and, http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/data_sharing/data_sharing_guidance.htm#goals, and http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/data_sharing/data_sharing_faqs.htm), as well as the NIDDK policy for data sharing in multi-center and large single-center clinical studies http://www.niddk.nih.gov/research-funding/process/human-subjectsresearch/Documents/PublicversionNIDDKdatasharingpolicy2013July2013.pdf.
13. The Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007 (FDAAA or US Public Law 110-85) was passed on September 27, 2007. The law requires mandatory registration and results reporting for certain clinical trials of drugs, biologics, and devices. If trials conducted under this grant are applicable clinical trials subject to FDAAA, the sponsor or his/her designee will perform the mandatory study registration and reporting of study results to ClinicalTrials.gov. For more information about this law and requirements for sponsors and/or investigators, visit the PRS and U.S. Public Law 110-85 Information Page at http://prsinfo.clinicaltrials.gov/fdaaa.html. In addition, grantees should be aware that clinical trials not covered by FDAAA may still require registration in an approved registry in order to be published, according to the guidelines issued by the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (http://icmje.org/recommendations/browse/publishing-and-editorial-issues/clinical-trialregistration.html).
NIH staff have substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the normal stewardship role in awards, as described below:
An NIDDK Project Scientist with substantial involvement will:
1. Serve as the contact point for all facets of the scientific interaction with the awardee (s). As required for the coordination of activities and to expedite progress, NIDDK may designate additional NIDDK staff to provide advice to the awardee on specific scientific and/or analytic issues. Such staff may include another Project Scientist or Project Coordinator, who will provide direct technical assistance to the awardees to optimize the conduct and/or analysis of the study; or who may assist in the coordination of activities across multiple sites.
2. For multi-center studies, participate in the Steering Committee that oversees study conduct. The NIDDK Project Scientist or Project Coordinator will be a full participant and voting member of the Steering Committee and, if applicable, subcommittees.
3. Serve as a resource to study investigators with respect to other ongoing NIDDK activities that may be relevant to the study to facilitate compatibility with the NIDDK missions and avoid unnecessary duplication of effort.
4. Have substantial involvement assisting in the design and coordination of research activities for awardees as elaborated below:
a. Assisting by providing advice in the management and technical performance of the investigations, coordinating required regulatory clearances for investigational agents used in the study, which are held by NIDDK. The NIDDK may reserve the right to cross file or independently file an Investigational New Drug Application or an Investigational Device Exemption form with the FDA.
b. The NIDDK Project Scientist or Project Coordinator may coordinate activities among awardees by assisting in the design, development, and coordination of a common research or clinical protocol and statistical evaluations of data; in the preparation of questionnaires and other data recording forms; and in the publication of results.
c. Reviewing procedures for assessing data quality and study performance monitoring.
d. The NIDDK Project Scientist or Project Coordinator may be co-authors on study publications. In general, to warrant co-authorship, NIDDK staff must have contributed to the following areas: (a) design of the concepts or experiments being tested; (b) performance of significant portions of the activity; (c) participation in analysis and interpretation of study results and (d) preparation and authorship of pertinent manuscripts.
The NIDDK Program Official identified in the Notice of Award will:
1. Interact with the Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) on a regular basis to monitor study progress. Monitoring may include: regular communications with the Program Director/Principal Investigator and staff, periodic site visits, observation of field data collection and management techniques, quality control, fiscal review, and other relevant matters; as well as attendance at Steering Committee, data safety and monitoring board, and related meetings. The NIDDK retains, as an option, periodic review of progress by researchers not involved with the study.
2. Review and approve protocols prior to implementation to insure they are within the scope of peer review, for safety considerations, as required by Federal regulations.
3. The NIDDK Program Official will monitor protocol progress, and may request that a protocol study be closed to accrual for reasons including: (a) accrual rate insufficient to complete study in a timely fashion; (b) accrual goals met early; (c) poor protocol performance; (d) patient safety and regulatory concerns; (e) study results that are already conclusive; (f) low likelihood of showing a benefit of the intervention (futility); and (g) emergence of new information that diminishes the scientific importance of the study question. The NIDDK will not permit further expenditures of NIDDK funds for a study after requesting closure except as specifically approved by the NIDDK.
4. Make recommendations for continued funding based on: a) overall study progress, including sufficient patient and/or data accrual; b) cooperation in carrying out the research (e.g., attendance at Steering Committee meetings, implementation of group decisions, compliance with the terms of award and reporting requirements); and/or c) maintenance of a high quality of research, which will allow pooling of data and comparisons across multiple cooperative agreement awards for common data elements.
5. Appoint an independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) as appropriate for Phase III clinical trials or other high risk studies, or an Observational Study Monitoring Board (OSMB) for observational/epidemiologic studies; these Boards will review study progress, safety data, and interim results, as appropriate, and provide guidance to the NIDDK. The NIDDK Program Official or their Project Coordinator will serve as the Executive Secretary and/or NIDDK program representative on the DSMB/OSMB.
Areas of Joint Responsibility include:
In addition to the interactions defined above, NIDDK Project Scientist and Awardees shall share responsibility for the following activities:
A Steering Committee organized by the study investigator(s) will be the main governing body of the study.
The Steering Committee has primary responsibility to design research activities, establish priorities, develop common protocols and manuals, questionnaires and other data recording forms, establish and maintain quality control among awardees, review progress, monitor patient accrual, coordinate and standardize data management, and cooperate on the publication of results. Major scientific decisions regarding the core data will be determined by the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee will document progress in written reports to the NIDDK Program Official, and will provide periodic supplementary reports upon request.
The Steering Committee will be composed of all Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s), (including those of data coordinating /statistical centers, if any) and co-investigators as deemed necessary, and the NIDDK Project Scientist. The final structure of the Steering Committee and voting procedures will be established at the first meeting. The NIDDK Project Scientist will have voting membership on the Steering Committee, and as appropriate, its subcommittees. The frequency of Steering Committee meetings will be dictated by a vote of the members of the Steering Committee.
A Chairperson of the Steering Committee, other than the NIDDK Project Scientist, will be selected by the NIDDK, in consultation with the Steering Committee. The Chairperson provides leadership to the Committee by conducting the Steering Committee meetings, representing the study group to the External Oversight Committee established by the NIDDK and by interacting closely with the awardees during protocol development and implementation.
Any disagreement that may arise on scientific/programmatic matters (within the scope of the award), between award recipients and the NIDDK may be brought to dispute resolution. A dispute resolution panel will be composed of three members --one selected by the awardee (or the Steering Committee, with the NIDDK member not voting), a second member selected by NIDDK, and the third member elected by the two prior selected members. These special dispute resolution procedures in no way affect the awardee's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in accordance with PHS regulations at 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D, and HHS regulations at 45 CR Part 16.
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.
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