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 Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

Funding Opportunity Title
Caring for OutPatiEnts after Acute Kidney Injury (COPE-AKI) – Scientific and Data Research Center (U01 Clinical Trial Required)
Activity Code

U01 Research Project – Cooperative Agreements

Announcement Type

New

Related Notices
  • August 26, 2020 - Notice of Correction to Eligibility in NIH Funding Opportunity Announcements. See Notice NOT-OD-20-171.
  • August 25, 2020 - Notice of Change to Funding Opportunity Description of RFA-DK-20-012. See Notice NOT-DK-20-046.
Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number
RFA-DK-20-012
Companion Funding Opportunity

RFA-DK-20-011 -U01 Research Project – Cooperative Agreements

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

93.847

Funding Opportunity Purpose

Acute kidney injury (AKI) is associated with high morbidity, including increased risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD), end-stage kidney disease (ESKD), cardiovascular disease, and mortality. Severity, duration, and frequency of episodes of AKI as well as age, pre-existing CKD, and other comorbidities are associated with greater risks of CKD progression and death.

There is limited evidence to inform recommendations for processes of care or therapeutic interventions targeting progression of kidney disease and the associated morbidity and mortality in AKI survivors. This is a missed opportunity to prevent chronic disease and premature death.

The Caring for OutPatiEnts after Acute Kidney Injury (COPE-AKI) Consortium, composed of 3 to 4 Clinical Centers (CCs) and a Scientific and Data Research Center (SDRC), will develop and test interventions that aim to reduce morbidity compared with usual care in Stage 2 and 3 AKI survivors. This FOA pertains to the SDRC.

Key Dates

Posted Date
July 07, 2020
Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)
October 04, 2020
Letter of Intent Due Date(s)

October 4, 2020

Application Due Date(s)

November 4, 2020

All applications are due by 5:00 PM local time of applicant organization. All types of non-AIDS applications allowed for this funding opportunity announcement are due on the listed date(s).

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

AIDS Application Due Date(s)

Not Applicable.

Scientific Merit Review

February-March 2021

Advisory Council Review

May 2021

Earliest Start Date

July 2021

Expiration Date
November 05, 2020
Due Dates for E.O. 12372

Not Applicable

Required Application Instructions

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in 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 NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts ).

Conformance to all requirements (both in the Application Guide and the FOA) is required and strictly enforced. Applicants must read and follow all application instructions in the Application Guide as well as any program-specific instructions noted in Section IV. When the program-specific instructions deviate from those in the Application Guide, follow the program-specific instructions.

Applications that do not comply with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

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

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

  3. Use Grants.gov Workspace to prepare and submit your application and eRA Commons to track your application.


  4. Table of Contents

Part 2. Full Text of Announcement

Section I. Funding Opportunity Description

Background

The Caring for OutPatiEnts after Acute Kidney Injury’ (COPE-AKI) consortium will develop and test interventions that aim to reduce morbidity compared with usual care in patients after hospitalization with Stage 2 and 3 AKI. Whether a medical intervention in AKI survivors, such as nephrology clinic follow-up education and clinical care and therapy with available treatments, can improve outcomes is unknown in this population. Improving outcomes of AKI survivors is of high significance to patients as well as healthcare organizations. Accordingly, both clinical outcomes and patient-centered outcomes should be assessed.

Important gaps in knowledge and care in AKI survivors that could be addressed include but are not limited to:

  • Management of risk factors for developing CKD, ESKD, and cardiovascular complications
  • Blood pressure goals
  • Fragmentation and heterogeneity of care, poor communication among providers, and other socioeconomic barrier

Interventions might include, but are not limited to:

  • Primary care or nephrology outpatient follow up and coordination of care using bundled processes of care
  • Use of telemedicine, social media, or digital mobile platforms for implementation and evaluation of processes of care
  • Pharmacologic or non-pharmacologic methods to prevent recurrent AKI
  • Targeting established pathways of progression in CKD [e.g. inhibition of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS)]
  • Physical and psychological rehabilitation

This FOA is not intended to test novel drug therapies, such as Phase 1-3 drug studies, and these types of studies would be considered nonresponsive and withdrawn.

Delayed onset studies that are data gathering in one aim to support a clinical study in another aim are not considered responsive to this FOA.

Clinical outcomes to consider include but are not limited to:

  • Recurrent AKI hospitalization
  • All-cause hospitalizations
  • A composite endpoint of events or event-free days (for example, recurrent AKI hospitalization, all cause hospitalizations or ER visits, congestive heart failure, and/or adverse drug events)
  • Major adverse kidney events (MAKE; composite of death, disability, dialysis, and persistent kidney dysfunction)
  • Congestive heart failure
  • Magnitude and change in albuminuria or proteinuria and hypertension
  • Incident or progressive CKD
  • Cardiovascular events
  • Death

Patient-centered outcomes to consider include but are not limited to:

  • Patients’ perceptions of health-related quality of life and functional status
  • Patients’ knowledge
  • Patients’ symptom control
  • Patients' psychosocial status

Proposed trials could include study of patients with COVID-19 related AKI.

Real-time risk factor and outcome data may be captured via the electronic health record (EHR), by leveraging and expanding an existing pilot set of more than 200 standardized data elements identified and prioritized for comprehensive chronic kidney disease (CKD) care by the NIDDK CKD eCare Plan Working Group. The eCare Plan data element set includes new and existing data standards from widely used ontologies (such as ICD-10, SNOMED-CT, LOINC, RxNorm, etc) and is intended to enable interoperability of clinical data for research and care.


The COPE-AKI Consortium Structure

The Caring for OutPatiEnts after Acute Kidney Injury (COPE-AKI) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) will establish 3 to 4 Clinical Centers (CCs) to work collaboratively with a Scientific and Data Research Center (SDRC) in a Consortium. The Consortium is expected to comprise a wide range of expertise, including but not limited to nephrologists, primary care physicians, intensivists, biostatisticians, ethicists, data scientists, and patient advisor participants.

Studies proposed by the successful applicants will be the starting point for discussions regarding the research to be undertaken by the Consortium. Investigators will devise studies that will be reviewed by a Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) and approved by the NIDDK. The final study protocol will be designed by the CC and SDRC Principal Investigators and approved by the Steering Committee, and then the DSMB and the NIDDK. Consortium study results are expected to provide evidence for management approaches to improve outcomes after hospitalization with AKI. It is envisioned that a successful applicant for a Clinical Center will have a large population of patients with AKI that can be identified and followed as outpatients after hospitalization.

The CC and SDRC investigators will work collaboratively on the design, planning, execution, and analysis of the intervention.

The CCs will be responsible for screening and recruiting study participants, conducting interventions, obtaining biological samples and clinical information from all participants at baseline and during follow-up, and transmission of those data and samples to the SDRC, which will accept and manage the data. Each CC will be required to enroll and follow between 300-500 patients in the study. Each CC will submit a plan for screening hospitalized Stage 2 and 3 AKI patients to identify patients being discharged and a proposed outpatient intervention.

The SDRC will be primarily responsible for ensuring the scientific integrity, comprehensiveness, and robustness of the research design, biostatistics, implementation, data quality, analysis, storage, and availability for study both within and eventually outside the Consortium. Please refer to the NIDDK Regulatory Policies and Guidance document at https://www.niddk.nih.gov/research-funding/human-subjects-research/policies-clinical-researchers.The SDRC investigators, including biostatisticians, will work with the CC investigators to develop the scientific design of the study.

The Consortium PD/PIs will have the primary responsibility for ensuring that the design of the study, including the primary outcome, is scientifically sound, comprehensive, with sufficient statistical power to study the primary outcomes. The SDRC will provide biostatistical and analytic expertise, and conduct analyses and interpretation of the data in conjunction with the investigators at the CCs. The SDRC and CCs will work closely together to achieve the goals of the Consortium.

The CCs will work in a collaborative, harmonious and efficient manner with the SDRC to comprehensively maximize the number of participants and collect initial and longitudinal data and information on clinical outcomes on all participants during the study period, within the purview of the Consortium. A CC can propose satellite hospital sites to work together under its direction to fulfill recruitment requirements.

Scientific and Data Research Center (SDRC)

The SDRC applicants should have well-documented experience in managing multi-center, multi-institutional research projects and should include expertise in data science, biostatistics, kidney research, epidemiology, project management, and ethical conduct of research.

The SDRC must be a U.S. domestic institution (see Section III, Eligible Institutions).

Research Objectives

Study Design

The SDRC will:

  • Lead the Consortium in the development of the final study design. The SDRC will provide statistical support and power calculations to guide deliberations. Each CC is expected to enroll 300-500 participants
  • Lead the Consortium in the development of common protocols and build data collection tools and case report forms that will be implemented across the CCs.

Data Analysis
The SDRC will:

  • Develop and implement analytic strategies to integrate all of the data from the CCs.
  • Provide overall data management, including tracking study progress, creating interim and final study reports, and providing analytic support for the consortium studies throughout all phases of execution and publication. This effort will include preparing the final curated data transfer to the NIDDK Central Repository.


Project Management
The SDRC will:

  • Develop training materials and will conduct training or arrange for training of study staff at the CCs.
  • Perform CC monitoring and quality control of data collected at the CCs.
  • Track and coordinate approvals from institutional review boards at CCs including issues of data and sample sharing.
  • Develop and maintain an updated Manual of Procedures for CC activities, including biological sample handling.
  • Create and manage a secure website to make data promptly accessible to researchers within and outside the consortium. The SDRC will also develop a public website for the consortium.
  • Arrange and cover the cost of transport of biological samples from the CCs to the SDRC repository. The SDRC will plan and budget for storing samples for analyses and will deposit a representative archival set of samples in the NIDDK Central Repository at set intervals during the study period or at the end of the study.
  • Negotiate material transfer agreements and data use agreements between institutions involved in the Consortium.


In furthering the work of the Consortium, the SDRC will:

  • Plan steering committee meetings, teleconferences and webinars, and coordinate steering committee meetings in proximity to the NIH main campus. The SDRC will arrange and cover the cost of face-to-face meetings. The SDRC PDs/PIs must attend steering committees and should budget for their travel.
  • Coordinate meetings with the NIDDK-appointed Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) and prepare reports and presentations.
  • Agree that the final design and implementation of the study will be determined by the COPE-AKI consortium Steering Committee. This will be based on input and deliberations by all members of the Consortium.
  • Accept the overall governance, common protocols, publication policies, collaborative procedures, confidentiality policies and data sharing plans to be developed by the COPE-AKI consortium.

Administration and Meetings

The Steering Committee (SC) will serve as the governing body of the Consortium. Its actions and decisions will be determined by majority vote. The SC will be composed of the SDRC and CC Program Directors/Principal Investigators (PDs/PIs), other key investigators and the NIDDK Project Scientist, as well as patient participant representatives, appointed by the NIDDK. The SC will meet regularly in-person in the Bethesda MD / Washington DC metropolitan area, and by telephone or webinar, as necessary, as a full committee and in working groups to develop and implement study protocols. SC responsibilities include: providing input on and approval of all studies developed by the Consortium members prior to study implementation; review and approval of all data analyses, public presentations and publications of research conducted within the consortium; and development of policies and procedures for submission and approval of research applications using Consortium resources. The NIDDK will select a chair of the SC (Steering Committee Chair [SCC]) either from the PDs/PIs of the CC’s, or outside the study group.

An Executive Committee (EC) will be comprised of the Steering Committee Chair, the SDRC PDs/PIs, and the NIDDK Project Scientist. Additional CC investigators, NIDDK Program Officers and other NIH officers, patient participant representatives and support personnel may participate in the EC as needed. The Executive Committee will make operational decisions for the Consortium between SC meetings by means of weekly telephone conference calls.

The NIDDK Project Scientist will assist the SC in the development of Consortium study protocols, will monitor the progress of projects and functioning of all consortial activities, will assist investigators in the analysis and interpretation of consortial data, and will participate in all aspects of the research and in preparation and writing of all manuscripts from consortial studies for publication.

SDRC and CC Investigators will devise studies that will be reviewed by a Data and Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB) and approved by the NIDDK. The final study protocol will be designed by the CC and SDRC PDs/PIs and approved by the Steering Committee, and then the DSMB and the NIDDK.

A DSMB will be appointed by the NIDDK at the beginning of the funding period, to provide input on the design of studies prior to their implementation. The DSMB will monitor the research efforts and the progress of the studies and advise primarily the NIDDK as well as the Consortium investigators. The DSMB may include biostatisticians, pharmacologists, nephrologists, ethicists, and CKD and AKI patients. The DSMB will review study protocols prior to implementation and will monitor progress and safety of the studies. CC applicants must not suggest potential participants for the DSMB in their applications.

The CCs and SDRC will each identify two representatives of the patient population to be studied to serve on a Community Advisory Council, which will provide feedback to the Consortium regarding the design and conduct of the study. One NIDDK and one SDRC member will staff this committee.

Awardees will meet to finalize the Consortium study protocol(s). Both CC and SDRC awardees should be prepared to participate in conference calls immediately after funding and should plan to attend the first Steering Committee meeting in the Bethesda, Maryland / Washington DC area, or virtually if necessary,on July 26-27, 2021.

Subsequent 1-2 day in-person or virtual SC meetings will be conducted every 3-4 months for the first year and twice yearly or more often as needed thereafter in the Bethesda MD / Washington DC area. Applicants should budget accordingly.

Awardees must agree to abide by the Network Duality of Interests Policy and Procedures and may need to develop procedures to require study investigators and others associated with the study to identify financial and other conflicts of interest on a routine basis, at least annually, and to share this information with the NIDDK Program staff.

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

Section II. Award Information

Funding Instrument

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

Application Types Allowed
New

The OER Glossary and the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide provide details on these application types. Only those application types listed here are allowed for this FOA.

Clinical Trial?
Required: Only accepting applications that propose clinical trial(s)

Need help determining whether you are doing a clinical trial?

Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards

NIDDK intends to commit up to $750,000 in FY 2021 to fund one award.

Award Budget

Application budgets are limited to $500,000 direct costs in the first year and should reflect the actual needs of the proposed project.

Award Project Period

The maximum project period is 5 years.

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

Section III. Eligibility Information

1. Eligible Applicants

Eligible Organizations

Higher Education Institutions

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

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

  • Hispanic-serving Institutions
  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)
  • Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)
  • Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions
  • Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs)

Nonprofits Other Than Institutions of Higher Education

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

For-Profit Organizations

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

Local Governments

  • State Governments
  • County Governments
  • City or Township Governments
  • Special District Governments
  • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Federally Recognized)
  • Indian/Native American Tribal Governments (Other than Federally Recognized)

Federal Governments

  • Eligible Agencies of the Federal Government
  • U.S. Territory or Possession

Other

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

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

Non-domestic (non-U.S.) components of U.S. Organizations are not eligible to apply.

Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are 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) – 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.
  • eRA Commons - Applicants must have an active DUNS number to register in eRA Commons.Organizations can register with the eRA Commons as they are working through their SAM or Grants.gov registration, but all registrations must be in place by time of submission. eRA Commons requires organizations to identify at least one Signing Official (SO) and at least one Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) account in order to submit an application.
  • Grants.gov – Applicants must have an active DUNS number and SAM registration in order to complete the Grants.gov registration.

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

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

Eligible Individuals (Program Director/Principal Investigator)

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

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

2. Cost Sharing

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

3. Additional Information on Eligibility

 

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

The application forms package specific to this opportunity must be accessed through ASSIST, Grants.gov Workspace or an institutional system-to-system solution. Links to apply using ASSIST or Grants.gov Workspace are available in Part 1 of this FOA. See your administrative office for instructions if you plan to use an institutional system-to-system solution.

2. Content and Form of Application Submission

It is critical that applicants follow the instructions in the Research (R) Instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guideexcept 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.

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:

John F. Connaughton, Ph.D.
Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Telephone: 301-594-7797
Email: NIDDKLetterofIntent@mail.nih.gov

Page Limitations

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

Instructions for Application Submission

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

SF424(R&R) Cover

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

SF424(R&R) Project/Performance Site Locations

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

SF424(R&R) Other Project Information

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

SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile

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

The Multiple PD/PI plan, if applicable, could include a nephrologist, a primary care physician, and intensive care physician and/or a clinical trialist or biostatistician.

 

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

A one to two-day Steering Committee meeting(s) will be conducted every 3-4 months for the first year and twice yearly or more often as needed thereafter in-person in the Bethesda MD / Washington DC area, or virtually if needed. Applicants should budget accordingly.

Applicants for the SDRC should budget for the support of two meetings of a DSMB in the Bethesda, MD / Washington, DC area, or virtually if needed, in the first year, including travel, lodging, and honoraria for up to 15 DSMB members, and at least one such meeting a year in subsequent years.

R&R Subaward Budget

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

PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement

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

PHS 398 Research Plan

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

Research Strategy:

An application for the SDRC must:

  • Propose a late-hospitalization and/or outpatient intervention study that incorporates an innovative strategy, analytical approach, and power analysis to accomplish the goals of the FOA, to illustrate how the SDRC will operate.
  • Present experience of the team with clinical trials pertinent to this FOA. It is envisioned that a successful SDRC will include a nephrologist, a senior Biostatistician, a Master’s level Biostatistician/Epidemiologist, and a Database Manager as well as other key staff.
  • Present a plan for coordination of biosample (e.g. serum, plasma, DNA, tissue, urine, and stool, as applicable) collection, storage, quality control, and distribution of data and clinical samples.
  • Present a plan to work collaboratively with the CC investigators in the planning, implementation, and analysis of all major studies.
  • Describe the roles, responsibilities and interactions of the SDRC with the CC investigators and provide a leadership plan.
  • Describe how the SDRC will coordinate data collection, perform analyses, and prepare study reports for the CCs performing studies, in addition to preparing final protocols for review and approval. The SDRC will be responsible for the conduct of Steering Committee meetings and conference calls, and for presentation of data at the DSMB meetings. All data collected by the CCs will be sent to the SDRC for quality control and analysis.

The Research Strategy section for the SDRC should:

  • Describe the need, background, hypotheses, and proposed clinical trial design, including power analysis and statistical analysis plan, of a clinical trial that might be carried out by the consortium.
  • Describe the available expertise within the SDRC in the development of common protocols, data collection tools, and case report forms.
  • Describe the available expertise within the SDRC to develop and implement statistical analytic strategies.
  • Describe the formal organizational structure of the multidisciplinary team that should include expertise in data science, biostatistics, kidney research, epidemiology, project management, and ethical conduct of research. Describe how they will contribute to addressing the scientific and project management needs of the consortium.
  • Describe the PIs experience in managing multi-center and multi-institutional research projects, without duplicating in the biosketches.
  • Provide evidence of sufficient expertise to address potential leadership and operational requirements.
  • Describe the capabilities of the SDRC to track study progress across CCs, perform site monitoring and quality control of CC data, and create interim and final study reports.
  • Describe experience in managing approvals from institutional review boards including addressing issues of data and sample sharing.
  • Describe plans and available expertise within the SRCC to create and manage a secure website for researchers within and outside the consortium and to ensure that data are shared promptly. Describe plans and available expertise to create and manage a public website for the consortium.
  • Describe relevant experience in negotiating material transfer agreements and data use agreements.
  • Describe the project management capabilities of the SDRC, including planning of committee meetings, teleconferences and webinars, and travel.
  • Describe how the data will be collated and analyzed by the Consortium, and how data will be transferred to the SDRC and the NIDDK Central Repository at the appropriate time.
  • Describe how data regarding important baseline and longitudinal clinical information and outcomes of participants will be collected and analyzed by the SDRC.
  • Describe how analyses of medication use, perception of functional status and quality of life, and clinical findings will be analyzed together.
  • Describe the ability of the SDRC to work seamlessly with any named academic and industry partners to ensure appropriate access to resources provided through these partnerships.
  • Include an acknowledgement and discussion of the responsibilities of the SDRC as part of a multi-center collaborative project.


SDRC applicants should describe how they will carry out major scientific responsibilities, including:

  • Providing research study design, biostatistical, and implementation expertise for consortial studies.
  • Ensuring the scientific integrity and robustness of the research design, statistical design, implementation, adherence, data quality, and data analysis of all study protocols. Proposed study designs should incorporate innovative strategies, practical stopping rules, and analytical approaches to accomplish the goals of the FOA.
  • Ensuring participant confidentiality and safety and reporting adverse events.
  • Conducting training and certification of study staff, and creating, maintaining and updating the manual of operations.
  • Managing the roles, responsibilities and interactions of the SDRC investigators with a leadership plan.
  • Monitoring the implementation of the study, including adherence and data quality, and performing interim and final data analyses.
  • Preparing databases of all data collected by the CCs, performing quality control and statistical analyses, and coordinating work on all publications.
  • Planning for coordination of biosample (e.g. serum, plasma, DNA, tissue, urine, and stool, as applicable) collection, storage, quality control and distribution, and interaction with the NIDDK Central Repository for eventual transfer of data and clinical samples.
  • Working collaboratively with the CC PDs/PIs in planning and conducting the various research efforts undertaken by the consortium and providing the organizational and administrative leadership necessary to enable the consortium to function smoothly.
  • Coordinating all Steering Committee meetings, including in-person, telephone conference calls and webinars, establishing and maintaining the Consortium public and private websites.
  • Staffing the SDRC with nephrologist(s), intensivist(s), clinical trialist(s), data scientists/informaticists, ethicists, biostatisticians, and representatives from the relevant community patient population in a meaningful way. Experience of the team should encompass expertise in a wide range of studies, including randomized controlled trials.
  • Ensuring meaningful and continuous involvement of patient participant advisors throughout the course of the study should be addressed.
  • Coordinating all NIDDK appointed DSMB meetings, in addition to preparation of reports and presentations for the DSMB and other meetings as needed, as well as providing honoraria and travel expenses for DSMB members.
  • Preparing manuscripts reporting study findings.

SDRC applications should address common study issues such as:

  • Ability to work collaboratively to establish Consortium Agreements that address: (1) procedures for data sharing among consortium members and data sharing with industry partners and qualified external investigators to provide opportunities to participate via ancillary studies and disseminated data analyses; (2) procedures for safeguarding confidential information, including without limitation, any data generated by the consortium as well as data received from external collaborators; (3) procedures for addressing ownership of intellectual property that result from aggregate multi-party data; (4) procedures for sharing biological specimens; (5) procedures for sharing data with the research and clinical communities according to NIDDK policies; and (6) procedures for the Consortium for reviewing publications, determining authorship, and industry access to publications.
  • Each industry collaboration, if any, will be governed by an appropriate Research Collaboration Agreement (e.g. Clinical Trial Agreement [CTA], Research Collaboration Agreement [RCA], etc.) with terms that ensure collaboration is conducted in accordance with the terms of the Cooperative Agreement and all applicable NIH policies and procedures. Each industry/SDRC agreement will address ownership of intellectual property discovered from multi-party data generated by the consortium, and the Consortium will develop intellectual property policies and procedures with terms that ensure collaboration and dissemination of research findings are conducted in accordance with the terms of the Cooperative Agreement and all applicable NIH policies and procedures. Consortium policies will require continued submission of data centrally to the SDRC and consortium policies/procedures will address protection of personal medical records of individuals.

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.

The following modifications also apply:

  • Scientific Data Research Center applications should provide a Data and Resource (Biological Sample) Sharing Plan.
  • Consortium investigators are expected to share their findings with the scientific community through scientific presentations and publications, as well as sharing data with investigators outside the Consortium, consistent with NIDDK policies.
  • All consortium-derived data and biological samples are expected to be provided to the NIDDK Central Repository in accordance with Institute guidelines, consistent with achieving the goals of the program.
Appendix:
Only limited Appendix materials are allowed. Follow all instructions for the Appendix as described in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide.
PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information

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

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

Study Record: PHS Human Subjects and Clinical Trials Information

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

Delayed Onset Study

Note: Delayed onset does NOT apply to a study that can be described but will not start immediately (i.e., delayed start).All instructions in the SF424 (R&R) Application Guide must be followed.

PHS Assignment Request Form

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

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

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

4. Submission Dates and Times

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

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

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

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

5. Intergovernmental Review (E.O. 12372)

This initiative is not subject to intergovernmental review.

6. Funding Restrictions

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

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

7. Other Submission Requirements and Information

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

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

For assistance with your electronic application or for more information on the electronic submission process, visit How to Apply – Application Guide. If you encounter a system issue beyond your control that threatens your ability to complete the submission process on-time, you must follow the Dealing with System Issues guidance. 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.

Use of Common Data Elements in NIH-funded Research

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.

Post Submission Materials

Applicants are required to follow the instructions for post-submission materials, as described in the policy. Any instructions provided here are in addition to the instructions in the policy.

Section V. Application Review Information

1. Criteria

Only the review criteria described below will be considered in the review process. Applications submitted to the NIH in support of the NIH mission are evaluated for scientific and technical merit through the NIH peer review system.

A proposed Clinical Trial application may include study design, methods, and intervention that are not by themselves innovative but address important questions or unmet needs. Additionally, the results of the clinical trial may indicate that further clinical development of the intervention is unwarranted or lead to new avenues of scientific investigation.

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.

 

Does the project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress in the field? Is the prior research that serves as the key support for the proposed project rigorous? 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?

Are the scientific rationale and need for a clinical trial to test the proposed hypothesis or intervention well supported by preliminary data, clinical and/or preclinical studies, or information in the literature or knowledge of biological mechanisms? For trials focusing on clinical or public health endpoints, is this clinical trial necessary for testing the safety, efficacy or effectiveness of an intervention that could lead to a change in clinical practice, community behaviors or health care policy? For trials focusing on mechanistic, behavioral, physiological, biochemical, or other biomedical endpoints, is this trial needed to advance scientific understanding?

Specific to this FOA: Is the proposed study an important and feasible intervention that is likely to favorably affect clinical outcomes, (e.g. recurrent hospitalization rate, development and progression of CKD, and morbidity and mortality) as well as patient-centered outcomes (e.g. quality or life and functional status) of patients after hospitalization with Stage 2 and 3 AKI?

Will successful completion of the aims bring unique advantages or capabilities to the research consortium?

 

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?

With regards to the proposed leadership for the project, do the PD/PI(s) and key personnel have the expertise, experience, and ability to organize, manage and implement the proposed clinical trial and meet milestones and timelines? Do they have appropriate expertise in study coordination, data management and statistics? For a multicenter trial, is the organizational structure appropriate and does the application identify a core of potential center investigators and staffing for a coordinating center?

Specific to this FOA: Do the PD/PI(s) and their investigative team include all the expertise, including data science, biostatistics, kidney research, epidemiology, project management, and ethical conduct of research?

Do the PD/PI(s) and their investigative team have the experience in leading and managing multi-center, multi-institutional research projects, including managing approvals from institutional review boards? Will the organizational structure of the multidisciplinary team of investigators enhance the likelihood of the successful execution of the Consortium?

Does the SDRC have expertise in design and analysis of clinical trials?

Does the SDRC have expertise in implementation, adherence, and ensuring data quality?

Is sufficient expertise in place for the coordination of biosample collection, storage, quality control and distribution (e.g. serum, plasma, DNA, tissue, stool and urine, as applicable) and interactions with the NIDDK Central Repository?

Does the SDRC provide evidence of sufficient expertise to address potential operational requirements of the Consortium, including the coordination of all meetings, agendas, conference calls, tracking of publications, protocol development, data collection and storage, website development and maintenance, preparation of reports and analyses for presentation to the investigators and the DSMB, development of systems for data sharing, performance of site visits and other operational activities?

Do the investigators have relevant experience in negotiating material transfer agreements and data use agreements?

Does the SDRC demonstrate expertise in establishing training and certification for Consortium staff?

 

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 design/research plan include innovative elements, as appropriate, that enhance its sensitivity, potential for information or potential to advance scientific knowledge or clinical practice?

Specific to this FOA : Does the application propose novel organizational concepts and management strategies in coordinating the research consortium the SDRC will serve?

Does the SDRC propose innovative approaches to the scientific question(s), research design, biostatistics, data quality, implementation, and data analysis efforts?

Does the SDRC propose innovative strategies to address the challenges of data and sample management across the CCs in the Consortium?

Has the SDRC proposed innovative ways of interacting and partnering with Consortium members to maximally use, in a comprehensive, synergistic fashion, the data collected by the Consortium, to achieve the goals of the FOA?

 

Are the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the specific aims of the project? Have the investigators included plans to address weaknesses in the rigor of prior research that serves as the key support for the proposed 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?

Does the application adequately address the following, if applicable:
Study Design
Is the study design justified and appropriate to address primary and secondary outcome variable(s)/endpoints that will be clear, informative and relevant to the hypothesis being tested? Is the scientific rationale/premise of the study based on previously well-designed preclinical and/or clinical research? Given the methods used to assign participants and deliver interventions, is the study design adequately powered to answer the research question(s), test the proposed hypothesis/hypotheses, and provide interpretable results? Is the trial appropriately designed to conduct the research efficiently? Are the study populations (size, gender, age, demographic group), proposed intervention arms/dose, and duration of the trial, appropriate and well justified?

Are potential ethical issues adequately addressed? Is the process for obtaining informed consent or assent appropriate? Is the eligible population available? Are the plans for recruitment outreach, enrollment, retention, handling dropouts, missed visits, and losses to follow-up appropriate to ensure robust data collection? Are the planned recruitment timelines feasible and is the plan to monitor accrual adequate? Has the need for randomization (or not), masking (if appropriate), controls, and inclusion/exclusion criteria been addressed? Are differences addressed, if applicable, in the intervention effect due to sex/gender and race/ethnicity?

Are the plans to standardize, assure quality of, and monitor adherence to the trial protocol and data collection or distribution guidelines appropriate? Is there a plan to obtain required study agent(s)? Does the application propose to use existing available resources, as applicable?

Data Management and Statistical Analysis
Are planned analyses and statistical approach appropriate for the proposed study design and methods used to assign participants and deliver interventions? Are the procedures for data management and quality control of data adequate at clinical site(s) or at center laboratories, as applicable? Have the methods for standardization of procedures for data management to assess the effect of the intervention and quality control been addressed? Is there a plan to complete data analysis within the proposed period of the award?

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 individuals of all ages (including children and older adults), justified in terms of the scientific goals and research strategy proposed?

Specific to this FOA: Has the applicant for a SDRC proposed an important, well-designed trial focused on improvement of clinical and/or patient-centered outcomes in patients after hospitalization with Stage 2 and 3 AKI that can be uniformly protocolized and applied across the Clinical Centers?

Are the operational plan and organizational structure well-reasoned and appropriate to accomplish the goals of the research consortium the SDRC will serve? Will the investigators promote strategies to ensure a robust and unbiased scientific approach across the consortium, as appropriate for the work proposed? Are an appropriate plan for work-flow and a well-established timeline proposed?

Have the investigators proposed measures to track study progress, solutions to expected problems, and backup plans to address these problems?

Has the applicant proposed feasible ways of interacting and partnering with the Consortium to maximally use, in a comprehensive, synergistic fashion, the data collected by the Consortium, to achieve the goals of the FOA?

Have the investigators proposed clear plans for websites which support the consortium, the wider research community, and the public, as specified within the FOA?

Has the applicant demonstrated expertise in and understanding of issues involved in meeting planning, coordination and administration of multicenter studies across sites, monitoring progress, handling and presenting data, and provided a detailed plan on how they will accomplish these tasks?

Have the applicants clearly articulated how they will fulfill all the roles required of the SDRC, as specified in this FOA, to support the entire consortium?

 

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?

If proposed, are the administrative, data coordinating, enrollment and laboratory/testing centers, appropriate for the trial proposed?

Does the application adequately address the capability and ability to conduct the trial at the proposed site(s) or centers? Are the plans to add or drop enrollment centers, as needed, appropriate?

Is there evidence of the ability of the individual site or center to: (1) enroll the proposed numbers; (2) adhere to the protocol; (3) collect and transmit data in an accurate and timely fashion; and, (4) operate within the proposed organizational structure?

Specific to this FOA: Does the institutional environment in which the SDRC will operate include the full range of capabilities for project management appropriate for the FOA?

Are the administrative, data coordinating, enrollment and laboratory/testing centers appropriate for the trial proposed?

Are resources available within the scientific environment to support electronic information handling?

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.

Study Timeline

Specific to applications involving clinical trials

Is the study timeline described in detail, taking into account start-up activities, the anticipated rate of enrollment, and planned follow-up assessment? Is the projected timeline feasible and well justified? Does the project incorporate efficiencies and utilize existing resources (e.g., CTSAs, practice-based research networks, electronic medical records, administrative database, or patient registries) to increase the efficiency of participant enrollment and data collection, as appropriate?
Are potential challenges and corresponding solutions discussed (e.g., strategies that can be implemented in the event of enrollment shortfalls)?

 

For research that involves human subjects but does not involve one of thecategories 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 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 individuals of all ages (including children and older adults) 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.

 

Not Applicable.

 

Not Applicable.

 

Not Applicable.

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.

 

Not Applicable.

 

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).

Specific to this FOA: Does the sharing plan provide relevant materials to the NIDDK Central Repository?

 

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.

 

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 National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseasesin 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 will receive a written critique.

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.

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

Applications will be assigned 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.

Individual awards are based on the application submitted to, and as approved by, the NIH and are subject to the IC-specific terms and conditions identified in the NoA.

ClinicalTrials.gov: If an award provides for one or more clinical trials. By law (Title VIII, Section 801 of Public Law 110-85), the "responsible party" must register and submit results information for certain “applicable clinical trials” on the ClinicalTrials.gov Protocol Registration and Results System Information Website (https://register.clinicaltrials.gov). NIH expects registration and results reporting of all trials whether required under the law or not. For more information, see https://grants.nih.gov/policy/clinical-trials/reporting/index.htm

Institutional Review Board or Independent Ethics Committee Approval: Grantee institutions must ensure that protocols are reviewed by their IRB or IEC. To help ensure the safety of participants enrolled in NIH-funded studies, the awardee must provide NIH copies of documents related to all major changes in the status of ongoing protocols.

Data and Safety Monitoring Requirements: The NIH policy for data and safety monitoring requires oversight and monitoring of all NIH-conducted or -supported human biomedical and behavioral intervention studies (clinical trials) to ensure the safety of participants and the validity and integrity of the data. Further information concerning these requirements is found at http://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/hs/data_safety.htm and in the application instructions (SF424 (R&R) and PHS 398).

Investigational New Drug or Investigational Device Exemption Requirements: Consistent with federal regulations, clinical research projects involving the use of investigational therapeutics, vaccines, or other medical interventions (including licensed products and devices for a purpose other than that for which they were licensed) in humans under a research protocol must be performed under a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigational new drug (IND) or investigational device exemption (IDE).

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 laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age and, in some circumstances, religion, conscience, and sex. This includes ensuring programs are accessible to persons with limited English proficiency. The HHS Office for Civil Rights provides guidance on complying with civil rights laws enforced by HHS. Please see https://www.hhs.gov/civil-rights/for-providers/provider-obligations/index.html and http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/civilrights/understanding/section1557/index.html.

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.

Please contact the HHS Office for Civil Rights for more information about obligations and prohibitions under federal civil rights laws at https://www.hhs.gov/ocr/about-us/contact-us/index.html or call 1-800-368-1019 or TDD 1-800-537-7697.

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

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. Any third-party (including industry, academia, and foundations) collaboration should be governed by a research collaboration agreement (e.g. Clinical Trial Agreement, Research Collaborative Agreement, etc.) or any third-party contract mechanism(s) with terms that ensure the collaboration is conducted in accordance with the Cooperative Agreement, applicable NIH/NIDDK policies and procedures, and with written approval from NIDDK Program staff. Any relevant proposed third-party agreements related to the network studies between grantee and third-party will be provided to the NIDDK Program staff and NIDDK Technology Advancement Office for review, comment, and approval to assure compliance with NIH/NIDDK policies and network policies. Further, at the request of the NIDDK Program staff, any other network-relevant third-party agreements must be shared with NIDDK. Failure to comply with this term may prompt action in accordance with NIH Grants Policy Statement, Section 8.5 titled: “Special Award Conditions and Remedies for Noncompliance (Special Award Conditions and Enforcement Actions”, and Section 8.5.2, titled: “Remedies for Noncompliance or Enforcement Actions: Suspension, Termination, and Withholding Support”, noncompliance with the terms and conditions of award will be considered by the funding IC for future funding and support decisions and may result in termination of the award.”

9. Any involvement of a third-party (including industry, academia, and foundations) in the study and network activities that includes access to any network study data and biosamples, or study results that are not publicly available, or using the name of the network or study or the name of the NIH or NIDDK, is permitted only after written permission by the NIDDK Program staff who will consult with others at NIH and 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 an individual company or other entity collaborating with the study. Any exception requires written approval from NIDDK Program staff.

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 PD/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 PD/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 leadership 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, https://grants.nih.gov/policy/sharing.htm, 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 https://www.niddk.nih.gov/-/media/Files/Research-Funding/Process/PublicversionNIDDKdatasharingpolicy2013July2013.pdf.

13. Study investigators are required to comply with NIH Policy on the Dissemination of NIH Funded Clinical Trial Information as stated at https://grants.nih.gov/policy/clinical-trials/reporting/understanding/nih-policy.htm. Per policy, the awardee is responsible for meeting the expectations of this policy. Refer to additional information at https://grants.nih.gov/policy/clinical-trials/reporting/index.htm.

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:

Steering Committee

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.

Dispute Resolution

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 CFR Part 16.

3. Reporting

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

A final RPPR, 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 agreementsare 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, application errors and warnings, documenting system problems that threatensubmission by the due date, and 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)

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

Grants.gov Customer Support(Questions regarding Grants.gov registration and Workspace)
Contact Center Telephone: 800-518-4726
Email:support@grants.gov

Scientific/Research Contact(s)

Ivonne H. Schulman, M.D.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Telephone: 301-435-3350
Email: ivonne.schuman@nih.gov

Peer Review Contact(s)

Ryan Morris Ph.D.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Telephone: 301-480-1296
Email: ryan.morris@nih.gov

Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Helen Hunter Cox, M.H.S.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Telephone: 301-496-7274
Email: Helen.Cox@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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