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 Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

National Eye Institute (NEI)

National Institute on Aging (NIA)

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)

National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB)

Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)

All applications to this funding opportunity announcement should fall within the mission of the Institutes/Centers. The following NIH Offices may co-fund applications assigned to those Institutes/Centers.

Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research (OBSSR)

Funding Opportunity Title
BRAIN Initiative: Research Resource Grants for Technology Integration and Dissemination (U24 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Activity Code

U24 Resource-Related Research Projects – Cooperative Agreements

Announcement Type
Reissue of RFA-NS-19-006
Related Notices

See Notices of Special Interest associated with this funding opportunity

  • October 28, 2021 - Reminder: FORMS-G Grant Application Forms & Instructions Must be Used for Due Dates On or After January 25, 2022 - New Grant Application Instructions Now Available. See Notice NOT-OD-22-018.
  • September 13, 2021 - Updates to the Non-Discrimination Legal Requirements for NIH Recipients. See Notice NOT-OD-21-181.
  • August 5, 2021 - New NIH "FORMS-G" Grant Application Forms and Instructions Coming for Due Dates on or after January 25, 2022. See Notice NOT-OD-21-169
  • August 5, 2021 - Update: Notification of Upcoming Change in Federal-wide Unique Entity Identifier Requirements. See Notice NOT-OD-21-170
  • April 20, 2021 - Expanding Requirement for eRA Commons IDs to All Senior/Key Personnel. See Notice NOT-OD-21-109

Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number
RFA-NS-22-011
Companion Funding Opportunity
None
Assistance Listing Number(s)
93.853, 93.213, 93.173, 93.866, 93.279, 93.865, 93.286, 93.242, 93.867, 93.273
Funding Opportunity Purpose

This funding opportunity announcement (FOA) supports efforts to disseminate resources for integration into neuroscience research practice. The resource(s) should be relevant to the goals of the BRAIN Initiative as outlined in the "BRAIN 2025: A Scientific Vision" and "The BRAIN Initiative 2.0: From Cells to Circuits, Toward Cures" and shared broadly to the neuroscience community. The resource(s) should address compelling needs of neuroscience researchers that are otherwise unavailable or impractical in their current form. Activities must include dissemination of an existing resource, and may include one or more of the following activities: distribution of tools and reagents; user training on the usage of new technologies or techniques; providing access to existing technology platforms and/or specialized facilities; minor improvements to increase the scale/efficiency of resource production and delivery; minor adaptations to meet the needs of a user community.Applications primarily focused on technology or software development and where broad dissemination is not planned to be initiated by year 2 are not responsive to this FOA.

Key Dates

Posted Date
December 01, 2021
Open Date (Earliest Submission Date)
January 15, 2022
Letter of Intent Due Date(s)
30 days prior to the application due date

Application Due Dates Review and Award Cycles
New Renewal / Resubmission / Revision (as allowed) AIDS Scientific Merit Review Advisory Council Review Earliest Start Date
February 15, 2022 February 15, 2022 Not Applicable May 2022 October 2022 December 2022
October 14, 2022 October 14, 2022 Not Applicable February 2023 May 2023 June 2023
June 14, 2023 June 14, 2023 Not Applicable October 2023 January 2024 February 2024
February 14, 2024 February 14, 2024 Not Applicable May 2024 October 2024 December 2024
October 11, 2024 October 11, 2024 Not Applicable February 2025 May 2025 June 2025

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.

Expiration Date
October 12, 2024
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

Since 2014, the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies® (BRAIN) Initiative has aimed to accelerate the development and application of innovative neurotechnologies, enabling researchers to produce a new dynamic picture of the brain that reveals how individual cells and complex neural circuits interact in both time and space. It is expected that these advances will ultimately lead to new ways to treat and prevent brain disorders.

As one of several federal agencies involved in the BRAIN Initiative, NIH's contributions to the BRAIN initiative were initially guided by "BRAIN 2025: A Scientific Vision," a strategic plan that detailed seven high-priority research areas. This plan was updated and enhanced in 2019 by: "The BRAIN Initiative 2.0: From Cells to Circuits, Toward Cures" and "The BRAIN Initiative and Neuroethics: Enabling and Enhancing Neuroscience Advances for Society." This and other BRAIN Initiative Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOAs) are based on this vision and issued with input from Advisory Councils of the 10 NIH Institutes and Centers supporting the BRAIN Initiative, as assisted by the NIH BRAIN Multi-Council Working Group and Neuroethics Working Group.

The NIH BRAIN Initiative recognizes that diverse teams working together and capitalizing on innovative ideas and distinct perspectives outperform homogeneous teams. There are many benefits that flow from a diverse scientific workforce, including: fostering scientific innovation, enhancing global competitiveness, contributing to robust learning environments, improving the quality of the research, advancing the likelihood that underserved populations participate in, and benefit from research, and enhancing public trust.

To support the best science, the NIH BRAIN Initiative encourages inclusivity in research. Examples of structures that promote diverse perspectives include but are not limited to:

  • Transdisciplinary research projects and collaborations among neuroscientists and researchers from fields such as computational biology, physics, engineering, mathematics, computer and data sciences, as well as bioethics.
  • Engagement from different types of institutions and organizations (e.g., research-intensive, undergraduate-focused, minority-serving, community-based).
  • Individual applications and partnerships that enhance geographic and regional heterogeneity.
  • Investigators and teams composed of researchers at different career stages.
  • Participation of individuals from diverse backgrounds, including groups traditionally underrepresented in the biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research workforce (see NOT-OD-20-031), such as underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, those with disabilities, those from disadvantaged backgrounds, and women.
  • Project-based opportunities to enhance the research environment to benefit early- and mid-career investigators.

The NIH also encourages businesses to participate in the BRAIN Initiative. It is possible for companies to submit applications directly to BRAIN Initiative program announcements or to collaborate with academic researchers in joint submissions. Small businesses should consider applying to one of the BRAIN Initiative small business FOAs.

The BRAIN Initiative requires a high level of coordination and sharing between investigators. It is expected that BRAIN Initiative awardees will cooperate and coordinate their activities after awards are made by participating in Program Director/Principal Investigator (PD/PI) meetings and in other activities such as the annual PI meeting. The data sharing expectations for BRAIN Initiative awards can be found at NOT-MH-19-010.

This FOA is related to the recommendations in the BRAIN 2025 (Section III, Part 8b) and the BRAIN Initiative 2.0: From Cells to Circuits, Toward Cures (Priority Area 8, Section III) Reports. Specifically, this FOA solicits applications that will address the recommendations on "Dissemination and training in new technologies" As noted in the BRAIN 2.0 report “new tools and new knowledge should be shared broadly to maximize the value of the BRAIN Initiative and to seed new paths of inquiry”.

Objectives

The overall goal of this FOA is to accelerate the scientific impact of the BRAIN Initiative through rapid dissemination of developed and validated technologies and resources broadly to the neuroscience research community. Awards from this RFA will be made for no more than 5 years, with a possibility of one renewal.

Projects may accomplish this goal by engaging in one or more of the following types of activities:

  • Production and distribution of reagents (e.g., antibodies, chemical probes, transgenic lines) using quality control manufacturing processes
  • Services providing customized instrumentation based on end user needs
  • Provision of state-of-art components, devices, or integrated systems (e.g., for assaying neural activity and/or connectivity) either distributed to end users or operated as specialized core facilities with user engagement
  • Resources focused on enabling the translation of neurotechnologies for human use
  • Maintenance, minor enhancements, and distribution of open source computational models and software packages
  • User facilities that enable scientists from outside institutions to utilize specialized tools or techniques
  • Training in usage of the resource

The following are examples of projects responsive to this FOA. These are representative, but not exhaustive, examples.

  • Consortium that provides screening services for voltage sensors and other probes for identifying changes in membrane potential or network modulatory states
  • Resource that provides reliable multichannel microelectrodes to the neuroscience community that are compatible with other recording technologies, such as optical imaging and stimulation or MRI
  • Imaging services for large-scale recording of neural activity from multiple brain areas or for large-scale sampling/manipulation of cellular activity with simultaneous whole-brain activity measurements
  • Dissemination of novel miniaturized wireless imaging systems and serving as a core resource for researchers
  • A resource that gathers, standardizes and streamlines the distribution of transgenic mouse models for neuroscience research

Projects must address one or more of the specific goals of the BRAIN Initiative, as described in the planning document "BRAIN 2025: A Scientific Vision" and updated and enhanced in 2019 by "The BRAIN Initiative 2.0: From Cells to Circuits, Toward Cures". Applications are not limited to existing BRAIN Initiative investigators or to technologies previously developed using BRAIN Initiative or NIH funds, nor must the end user community be limited to investigators with BRAIN Initiative funding. End users may include those studying disease relevant mechanisms. Projects should address compelling needs of broad communities of investigators or should justify the impact and unmet opportunity of providing the services at smaller scales.

Proposed techniques, resources or approaches must be at a stage wherein the potential value for research is well established, through publications or other demonstration methods, and dissemination must occur by early in year 2. Projects focused on developing novel and unproven technologies are not responsive to this FOA. Applicants developing new technologies are encouraged to submit to one of the BRAIN technology development FOAs. Applications to develop web-accessible data archives are strongly recommended to consider funding through RFA-MH-20-600, “BRAIN Initiative: Data Archives for the BRAIN Initiative”. Please see https://www.braininitiative.nih.gov/funding/ for more details about these and other BRAIN Initiative programs. Applications that propose to develop or disseminate data standards that are needed to describe experimental protocols being created by or used in the BRAIN Initiative will not be responsive this RFA. Such applications should consider RFA-MH-20-128 “BRAIN Initiative: Standards to Define Experiments Related to the BRAIN Initiative” instead.

Integration of proven techniques to produce new experimental systems, or application of existing technologies to produce new reagents such as genetic lines or constructs with an existing technology, are appropriate, but need to be described clearly with timelines for completion of development and testing. Clear value to the intended user group must be demonstrated in the application and dissemination must be planned by early year 2.

For projects proposing the development of novel technologies/resources with commercial potential, potential applicants should consider funding through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program or the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) program. Please see: https://sbir.nih.gov/ for more details about these technology development programs.

Resources are expected to be free from any patent or licensing constraints that would unduly restrict academic research use and impede achieving the goals of this funding program. For resources requiring material from human subjects (e.g. DNA, fibroblasts, blood, tissue), broad sharing of the resource and any derivatives with academic and industry investigators is expected, consistent with achieving the goals of this program and consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and informed consents.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to consult theScientific/Research Contactlisted below to discuss the alignment of their proposed work with the goals of this FOA, and the BRAIN Initiative Program.

 

Milestones

The success of the project will be facilitated by the adoption of clear, quantitative milestones with realistic and efficient timelines. Applications must include proposed milestones for each year of requested support, which will be evaluated as part of the review process. The milestones and timeline should include the timing and quantity of dissemination of the resource to the neuroscience community. Applications that fail to include annual milestones will be considered incomplete and will be withdrawn before review. Final version of milestones will be agreed upon at the time of award. If justified, future year milestones may be revised based on data and information obtained in the current year.

 

Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP)

This FOA requires a Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP) as part of the application (see further below). Applicants are strongly encouraged to read the FOA instructions carefully and view the available PEDP guidance material.

Applications must include a Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP) submitted as Other Project Information as an attachment (see Section IV). The PEDP will be assessed as part of the scientific and technical peer review evaluation, as well as considered among programmatic matters with respect to funding decisions.

Applicants must propose data sharing plans that are consistent with the Data Sharing Policy for the BRAIN Initiative.

Applications Not Responsive to this FOA:

Proposed research that is not responsive to this FOA and will not be reviewed include the following:

  • Projects focused on developing novel and unproven technologies
  • Projects which lack clear indication that the resource is well established and validated, through publications or other demonstration methods.
  • Projects where dissemination is not planned to occur by early year 2.
  • Projects that support clinical trials or provide patient services. Applicants considering such efforts are encouraged to explore alternative funding mechanisms.
  • Projects proposing repositories of brain and related bio-specimens.
  • Projects which propose to develop or disseminate data standards that are needed to describe experimental protocols being created by or used in the BRAIN Initiative will not be responsive this RFA. Such applications should consider RFA-MH-20-128 instead.

 

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
Renewal
Resubmission

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?

Not Allowed: Only accepting applications that do not propose clinical trials.

Need help determining whether you are doing a clinical trial?

Funds Available and Anticipated Number of Awards
The NIH anticipates providing $10M per year to fund an estimated 10 to 20 awards.

Award Budget
Application budgets are not limited but need to reflect the actual needs of the proposed project.
Award Project Period

Support may be requested for up to 5 years l.

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 Government

  • 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 eligible to apply.

Foreign components, as defined in the NIH Grants Policy Statement, are allowed. 

Required Registrations

Applicant organizations

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

  • Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) - All registrations require that applicants be issued a DUNS number. After obtaining a DUNS number, applicants can begin both SAM and eRA Commons registrations. The same DUNS number must be used for all registrations, as well as on the grant application.
  • System for Award Management (SAM) – 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

Number of Applications

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

The NIH will not accept duplicate or highly overlapping applications under review at the same time, per 2.3.7.4 Submission of Resubmission Application. 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 2.3.9.4 Similar, Essentially Identical, or Identical Applications)

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 Guide except where instructed in this funding opportunity announcement to do otherwise. Conformance to the requirements in the Application Guide is required and strictly enforced. Applications that are out of compliance with these instructions may be delayed or not accepted for review.

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:

Natalie Trzcinski, PhD

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: (301) 496-1779
Email: natalie.trzcinski@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.

 

Other Attachments:

Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP)

In an "Other Attachment" entitled "Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives," all applicants must include a summary of strategies to advance the scientific and technical merit of the proposed project through expanded inclusivity. The PEDP should provide a holistic and integrated view of how enhancing diverse perspectives is viewed and supported throughout the application and can incorporate elements with relevance to any review criteria (significance, investigator(s), innovation, approach, and environment) as appropriate. Where possible, applicant(s) should align their description with these required elements within the research strategy section. The PEDP will vary depending on the scientific aims, expertise required, the environment and performance site(s), as well as how the project aims are structured. The PEDP may be no more than 1-page in length and should include a timeline and milestones for relevant components that will be considered as part of the review. Examples of items that advance inclusivity in research and may be part of the PEDP can include, but are not limited to:

  • Discussion of engagement with different types of institutions and organizations (e.g., research-intensive, undergraduate-focused, minority-serving, community-based).
  • Description of any planned partnerships that may enhance geographic and regional diversity.
  • Plan to enhance recruiting of women and individuals from groups traditionally under-represented in the biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research workforce.
  • Proposed monitoring activities to identify and measure PEDP progress benchmarks.
  • Plan to utilize the project infrastructure (i.e., research and structure) to support career-enhancing research opportunities for diverse junior, early- and mid-career researchers.
  • Description of any training and/or mentoring opportunities available to encourage participation of students, postdoctoral researchers and co-investigators from diverse backgrounds.
  • Plan to develop transdisciplinary collaboration(s) that require unique expertise and/or solicit diverse perspectives to address research question(s).
  • Publication plan that enumerates planned manuscripts and proposed lead authorship.
  • Outreach and planned engagement activities to enhance recruitment of individuals from diverse groups as research participants including those from under-represented backgrounds.

For further information on the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (PEDP), please see https://braininitiative.nih.gov/about/plan-enhancing-diverse-perspectives-pedp.

Proposed Milestones and Timeline: – Applications that do not include this will be withdrawn and not reviewed. Milestones and timeline should be submitted as a separate attachment and must be no more than 2 pages in length. Applications must describe quantitative milestones for each year of support, that will serve as reliable indicators for objective evaluation of progress over the course of the project. The milestones should include realistic quantitative goals for resource usage and dissemination metrics (e.g. number of users, unique labs/institutions) which will be reported at the end of a given annual funding period, and clearly describe when dissemination of the resource will commence. Other common milestones may include user feedback, optimization and standardization, plans for sustainability, and outreach activities. These should include quantifiable measures of success, specific outcomes, and rationale. NIH Program staff will use the project milestones for evaluation of the funded award, and to determine whether to modify or continue the award in subsequent budget years. Applicants should include a project timeline in the form of a Gantt chart (or similar) that includes all major tasks to be performed during the project. The chart should also include estimated start and completion dates for those tasks. Applicants may consider this template in developing their milestone plan.

Letters of Support: Letters of support from potential resource users are strongly advised. In their letters, users should describe their research plans with a level of detail sufficient for reviewers to assess the potential impact of the proposed resource. No more than 10 letters from planned or potential end users may be submitted. It is encouraged that these letters demonstrate the applicant has considered diverse perspectives from the end user community. Applications may also include institutional letters which describe financial and collaborative arrangements, and/or agreements for payment for services, or letters which describe third party or strategic partners interest.

The Letters of Support attachment of the application should include a cover page listing the name, institution, and proposed role for each individual providing a letter of support.

Fee structure: Applicants may include a 1 page attachment detailing current and/or planned fee structure.

SF424(R&R) Senior/Key Person Profile

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

with the following additional instructions:

Applicants may include project management personnel as Senior/Key Person(s).

R&R Budget

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

with the following additional instructions:

The budget should include funds necessary for travel for up to two key personnel to participate in a BRAIN investigator meeting, lasting not more than two days and including up to two overnight stays, for each year of the project.

Projects may include budget for project manager.

PEDP implementation costs:

Applicants may include allowable costs associated with PEDP implementation (as outlined in the Grants Policy Statement section 7: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/policy/nihgps/html5/section_7/7.1_general.htm).

R&R Subaward Budget

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

PHS 398 Cover Page Supplement

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

PHS 398 Research Plan

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

Research Strategy: The Research Strategy section must include the following required information.

Technology readiness for dissemination: Describe the current status of the technology and readiness for broad dissemination and if/how the technology has been validated.

Currently Available Facilities and Services: Investigators must specifically define currently available facilities and services that are comparable to their proposed resource and highlight major value their resource will add.

Technology evolution (in Approach): In order to justify the requested length of support (up to 5 years), applicants should provide an evaluation of the speed of technology evolution in the scientific field and provide justification that the user base will maintain and/or grow during the entire support period requested. For example, if the applicant is proposing 5 years of funding, is there evidence based on the speed at which this technology has been evolving in the past few years that indicates that the proposed resource will remain relevant, cutting edge, and highly desirable by the user community over the entire 5 years of support?

Steering Committee (in Approach): A proposed Steering Committee is required to provide guidance and feedback on strategic priorities and on user access and prioritization. The steering committee should also ensure that the project is well integrated, and not redundant, with related efforts on an international scale. The committee should include established researchers with relevant technical and scientific expertise. The composition of this committee depends on the nature and scope of the project, and the committee may include, as appropriate to the project, individuals employed by the PD/PI's institution. Specific committee members do not need to be named to avoid potential conflicts and membership can be negotiated with program staff at the time of award; however, information on the proposed number of members, their scientific expertise, committee operations and frequency of meetings should be included.

Dissemination, Access, and Project Prioritization Plan (in Approach): Projects must describe planned mechanisms for thorough advertisement and dissemination of the resources broadly to the community of relevant investigators. It must be made clear that the resource will be disseminated broadly- to users spanning many unique labs and institutions representing diverse perspectives and not confined to a homogenous user group concentrated in the same geographic region. A concrete Project Prioritization Plan should detail how the capacity of the proposed resource will be evaluated and allocated. Prioritization may be facilitated by a fee structure, by formal project evaluation mechanisms, or by other appropriate considerations.Cost offsets via user fees are not required, but they should be considered as part of the project plan, because they provide potential mechanisms for efficient resource allocation and for resource sustainability. Access should be as broad as possible for the technology, including national and international users where possible.

Quality Assurance and Control Plan (in Approach): Projects must describe the planned strategy and mechanisms for quality control / assurance for the disseminated resource.

Team Management and Logistics Plan (in Approach): Investigators must describe the planned strategy for managing the personnel and resources on the team. The plans should highlight expertise and prior experience in managing any efforts outside the needs of their own research programs.

Progress Report for Renewal Applications (in Approach):Renewal applications should include a detailed account of experiences in dissemination and engagement highlighting outreach to users with diverse perspectives during the previous funding period, including successful and unsuccessful strategies. Information should be included on how the program's past experiences inform the current plan.Any non-public demographic information collected should be aggregated and anonymized.

PIs proposing a renewal may consider aggregating user institution type using:

  • NIGMS nomenclature https://www.nigms.nih.gov/training/RISE/Documents/Determining-Eligibilty-RePORTER.pdf -” research-intensive, i.e., those with an average of NIH research project grant (RPG) funding greater than or equal to $7.5 million total costs per year over the past 3 fiscal years, and research-active, i.e., those with an average of RPG funding less than $7.5 million total costs per year over the past 3 fiscal years (RPG data are available through NIHRePORTER)”
  • Designated Minority serving institutions: https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/edlite-minorityinst.html
  • Institutions inIDeA- eligible states: https://www.nigms.nih.gov/Research/DRCB/IDeA

PIs may consider aggregating user career stage using:

  • Early career: 0-14 years since terminal degree
  • Mid career: 15-29 years since terminal degree
  • Late career: 30+ years since terminal degree

See https://braininitiative.nih.gov/about/plan-enhancing-diverse-perspectives-pedp for further information of interest to NIH.

Renewal applicants are expected to have sought additional resources to maintain their operations after NIH funding and should include plans for other sources of support for program sustainability, including descriptions of all institutional support, financial and collaborative arrangements, and/or agreements for payment for services. Appropriate documentation should be included in the application- see instructions under “Other Attachments”. Provide other relevant information about the applicant’s approach for self-sustaining infrastructure and operations, and why NIH support in particular is needed to disseminate this resource.

 

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:

  • All applications, regardless of the amount of direct costs requested for any one year, must address a Data Sharing Plan. The data sharing expectations for BRAIN Initiative awards can be found at NOT-MH-19-010. This data sharing refers to experimental data generated as part of the proposed research strategy, not experimental data by users of the resource.
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-defined clinical 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.

Applications must include yearly milestones as a separate attachment. Applications that fail to include a milestone attachment will be considered incomplete and will be withdrawn. Applications must include a PEDP submitted as Other Project Information as an attachment. Applications that fail to include a PEDP will be considered incomplete and will be withdrawn.

Applications Involving the NIH Intramural Research Program

The requests by NIH Intramural Scientists will be limited to the incremental costs required for participation. As such, these requests will not include any salary and related fringe benefits for career, career conditional or other Federal employees (civilian or uniformed service) with permanent appointments under existing position ceilings or any costs related to administrative or facilities support (equivalent to Facilities and Administrative or F&A costs). These costs may include salary for staff to be specifically hired under a temporary appointment for the project, consultant costs, equipment, supplies, travel, and other items typically listed under Other Expenses. Applicants should indicate the number of person-months devoted to the project, even if no funds are requested for salary and fringe benefits.

If selected, appropriate funding will be provided by the NIH Intramural Program. NIH intramural scientists will participate in this program as PDs/PIs in accord with the Terms and Conditions provided in this FOA. Intellectual property will be managed in accord with established policy of the NIH in compliance with Executive Order 10096, as amended, 45 CFR Part 7; patent rights for inventions developed in NIH facilities are NIH property unless NIH waives its rights.

Should an extramural application include the collaboration with an intramural scientist, no funds for the support of the intramural scientist may be requested in the application. The intramural scientist may submit a separate request for intramural funding as described above.

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.

Overall Impact

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

Scored Review Criteria

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

Significance

Does the project address an important problem or a critical barrier to progress in the field? Is 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?

Will the proposed resource contribute substantially to the quality of neuroscience research ? From details provided in the letters of support, will it convincingly add major value over any comparable facilities and services? Is the technical resource developed to an appropriate stage (has validation been performed?) that the technology is ready for broad dissemination and not further development and beta testing? Is it unlikely that another technology will usurp the proposed technology in the period of support proposed and that the user base will maintain or grow in requested period of support?

To what extent do the efforts described in the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives further the significance of the project?

Investigator(s)

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?

Do the PD(s)/PI(s) have a history of service-oriented efforts outside the needs of their own research programs? Are they uniquely positioned to provide the proposed resource? Are the PD(s)/PI(s) and other personnel well suited to organize and maintain the resource, maintain quality control and equitable access? To what extent will the efforts described in the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives strengthen and enhance the expertise required for the project?

Innovation

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

Is the resource that is being provided to the end user one that is not currently available from commercial markets or that is prohibitively difficult to distribute due to financial considerations? Is the resource of a nature that the end user could not reasonably implement him/herself in the absence of this mechanism? Does the proposed resource enable novel and innovative research that otherwise would not be feasible? To what extent will the efforts described in the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives meaningfully contribute to innovation?

Approach

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?

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?

Are the proposed Steering Committee and Access and Prioritization Plan well-reasoned and appropriate for the project? Is the quality assurance and quality control plan described and appropriate for ensuring quality resources are being disseminated? Has a scale-up plan been included and is it appropriate for ensuring the sharing of resources broadly? Are the outreach activities and project prioritization plan likely to ensure a highly qualified and diverse user pool? Are the timeline and milestones associated with the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives well-developed and feasible?

How well does the Data Sharing Plan provide a summary of the shared data (generated as part of the proposed research strategy, not experimental data by users of the resource), a description of the data standards, a plan for the data archiving, and a timeline for data submission to the archive and sharing data with the research community?

Environment

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

To what extent will features of the environment described in the Plan for Enhancing Diverse Perspectives (e.g., collaborative arrangements, geographic diversity, institutional support) contribute to the success of the project?

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.

Milestones and Timeline

Are the Proposed Milestones and Timeline for the project overall described in sufficient detail and are they appropriate for the project? Is the timeline reasonable? Are the milestones feasible, well-developed, and quantifiable with regard to the specific aims? Do the milestones and timeline describe well and reasonably the timing and quantity of dissemination of reagents to the neuroscience community?Is the proposed Sustainability Plan well-reasoned and appropriate for the project?

Protections for Human Subjects

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

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

Inclusion of Women, Minorities, and Individuals Across the Lifespan

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.

Vertebrate Animals

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

Biohazards

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

Resubmissions

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

Renewals

For Renewals, the committee will consider the progress made in the last funding period, and the success of the program in broadly disseminating the resource during the previous funding period, particularly to investigators with diverse perspectives, including successful and unsuccessful strategies. It will also consider the evaluation activities conducted by the program in the last funding period and the evolution and improvement of the program already made and/or proposed in response to these evaluations. Particular attention will be given to sustainability activities in the previous period and justification for why continued NIH funding is required.

Revisions

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.

Applications from Foreign Organizations

Not Applicable.

Select Agent Research

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

Resource Sharing Plans

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

Authentication of Key Biological and/or Chemical Resources:

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

Budget and Period of Support

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

2. Review and Selection Process

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

As part of the scientific peer review, all applications 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.

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 National Advisory Neurological Disorders and Stroke Council. 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 including the PEDP.

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 recipient's business official.

Recipients 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.

Institutional Review Board or Independent Ethics Committee Approval: Recipient 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 recipient must provide NIH copies of documents related to all major changes in the status of ongoing protocols.

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, Recipients, and Activities, including of note, but not limited to:

If a recipient is successful and receives a Notice of Award, in accepting the award, the recipient agrees that any activities under the award are subject to all provisions currently in effect or implemented during the period of the award, other Department regulations and policies in effect at the time of the award, and applicable statutory provisions.

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 75.205and 2 CFR Part 200.206 “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 the 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, 2 CFR Part 200, 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 recipients 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 reside with the recipients for the project as a whole, although specific tasks and activities may be shared among the recipients and the NIH as defined below.

 

The PD(s)/PI(s) will have the primary responsibility for:

  • Determining experimental approaches, designing protocols, conducting experiments, analyzing, interpreting and publishing research data
  • Attending meetings with investigators, BRAIN Initiative staff and/or leadership, and members of the BRAIN Initiative Multi-Council Working Group to foster collaborations and exchange information and ideas to accelerate progress towards the goals of the BRAIN Initiative. 
  • Developing milestones with specific timelines and criteria for evaluation, and making appropriate revisions based on the feedback from the Principal Investigator meetings and recommendations from the Program Officer and/or Project Team. 
  • Discussing and sharing information, preliminary results, raw data, resources, and technology with the Program Officer and/or Project Team and the other investigative teams (i.e., recipients of awards issued under this FOA) as appropriate and consistent with achieving the goals of the BRAIN Initiative.
  • Sharing data, final results and technology with the broader research community as appropriate.
  • Provide updates at least annually on the implementation of the PEDP.

 

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

 

The Project Coordinator will have substantial programmatic involvement that is above and beyond the typical stewardship role in other awards. The Project Coordinator, with no role in stewardship of the award, will provide technical assistance, advice, coordination, and other program actions to support the recipients of the cooperative agreement during the conduct of an activity. In addition to the Project Coordinator, a Program Officer (PO) will be responsible for normal program stewardship of awards and will sign off on the grant documents and be responsible for the stewardship of the award, including monitoring implementation of the data and research resource sharing plans. The PO is named in the award notice.

The Project Coordinator:

  • May attend and participate in meetings of Principal Investigators and NIH Staff, assisting in the development of the meeting agendas, assisting in the development of milestones, assisting with the establishment of a consortium for the purpose of sharing information and coordination of project and research activities among the recipients of these cooperative agreements.
  • May serve as the Project Coordinator for multiple BRAIN Initiative awards.

The Project Team:

  • A group of NIH program staff from the ICs contributing to the NIH BRAIN Initiative will form a Project Team for this award. The Project Team will assist the Program Officer in the initial approval of the milestones prior to award.
  • They will also assist in the review of annual progress reports and other documents from recipients and in the evaluation of progress and coordination of activities with other recipients under this FOA. Continuation of funding will be dependent upon the recipient’s ability to show adequate progress towards milestone accomplishment.

 

Areas of Joint Responsibility include:

None; all responsibilities are divided between recipientsand NIH staff as described above.

 

Dispute Resolution:

Any disagreements that may arise in scientific or programmatic matters (within the scope of the award) between award recipients and the NIH may be brought to Dispute Resolution. A Dispute Resolution Panel composed of three members will be convened. It will have three members: a designee of the Steering Committee chosen without NIH staff voting, one NIH designee, and a third designee with expertise in the relevant area who is chosen by the other two; in the case of individual disagreement, the first member may be chosen by the individual recipient. This special dispute resolution procedure does not alter the recipient's right to appeal an adverse action that is otherwise appealable in accordance with PHS regulation 42 CFR Part 50, Subpart D and DHHS regulation 45 CFR Part 16.

3. Reporting

When multiple years are involved, recipients 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. NIH FOAs outline intended research goals and objectives. Post award, NIH will review and measure performance based on the details and outcomes that are shared within the RPPR, as described at 45 CFR Part 75.301 and 2 CFR Part 200.301.

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

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

Section VII. Agency Contacts

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

Application Submission Contacts

eRA Service Desk (Questions regarding ASSIST, eRA Commons, application errors and warnings, documenting system problems that threaten submission 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)

Natalie Trzcinski, Ph.D.
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-469-1779
Email: natalie.trzcinski@nih.gov

Peer Review Contact(s)
Chief, Scientific Review Branch
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Telephone: 301-496-9223
Email:
nindsreview.nih.gov@mail.nih.gov

Financial/Grants Management Contact(s)

Chief Grants Management Officer
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS))
Email: ChiefGrantsManagementOfficer@ninds.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, 2 CFR Part 200, and 45 CFR Part 75.


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