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U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command &
Fort Detrick Public Affairs/Marketing Office, Fort Detrick, Maryland


September 22, 2004

Department of Defense Neurofibromatosis Research Program Funding Opportunities for Fiscal Year 2005

The Fiscal Year 2005 (FY05) Defense Appropriations Act provides $25 million to the Department of Defense Neurofibromatosis Research Program (NFRP) to support innovative research directed toward improved prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of neurofibromatosis. This program is administered by the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command through the Office of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP).

FY05 NFRP Program Announcements for proposals in the following mechanisms are expected to be released in early November 2004:

  • NF Consortium Development Awards - New
  • Clinical Trial Awards
  • Concept Awards
  • Investigator-Initiated Research Awards (with optional Nested Postdoctoral Traineeship[s])
  • New Investigator Awards
  • Therapeutic Development Awards

The new NF Consortium Development Awards are intended to fund the development of a synergistic, multi-institutional NF clinical consortium through the selection of individual NF clinical research sites and an operations center. More information about this mechanism will be provided as it becomes available. The submission deadline is planned for May 3, 2005, 5:00 p.m. Eastern time.

Clinical Trial Awards are intended to fund Phase 1 or 2 clinical trials. All Clinical Trial Award proposals must include a clinical protocol and consent/assent form(s) that include Department of Defense Human Subjects Research Review Board-prescribed content. There are no total dollar amount restrictions. Funding can be requested for up to 3 years for Phase 1 clinical trials and up to 4 years for Phase 2 clinical trials.

Concept Awards are intended to fund the exploration of an initial concept or theory that could give rise to a testable hypothesis within NF research. Preliminary data are not required. These awards can be requested for $100,000 inclusive of direct and indirect costs over a 1-year performance period. Projects involving human subjects or human anatomical substances will not be supported (full details will be available when the Program Announcement is released).

Investigator-Initiated Research Awards are intended to fund basic and clinically oriented NF research. Independent investigators at a level equivalent to or higher than Assistant Professor are eligible to apply. There are no total dollar amount restrictions. Funding can be requested for a maximum of $2 million for up to 4 years. A Nested Postdoctoral Trainee is a recent doctoral graduate with 3 years or less of postdoctoral experience. Proposals with a Nested Postdoctoral Traineeship may request a maximum of $60,000 per year inclusive of direct and indirect costs for a maximum of $240,000 per trainee for up to 4 years. There is no limit to the number of postdoctoral trainees nested under a given proposal.

New Investigator Awards are intended to fund investigators in the early stages of their careers in innovative areas of NF research. Eligible investigators are those below the level of Associate Professor (or equivalent) with access to appropriate research facilities. Preliminary data are not required. An average of $150,000 per year in direct costs for a maximum of $450,000 over 3 years, plus indirect costs as appropriate, is available.

Therapeutic Development Awards are intended to fund preclinical development of therapeutics and tools for their evaluation in NF model systems. Proposals are expected to be product-driven, but may have a hypothesis-driven approach provided that the focus is on therapeutics. There are no total dollar restrictions. Funding can be requested for up to 3 years.

Detailed descriptions of each of these mechanisms, evaluation criteria, submission requirements, and deadlines will be available in the FY05 NFRP Program Announcements. Each Program Announcement will be available electronically for downloading from the CDMRP website (http://cdmrp.army.mil) upon its release in early November 2004. The submission deadline for all but the NF Consortium Development Awards is planned for February 22, 2005, 5:00 P.M. Eastern time. Requests for e-mail notification when Program Announcements are released may be sent to prequest@constellagroup.com.

Points of Contact:
Gail Whitehead, Public Affairs Coordinator, CDMRP, 301-619-7783
Richard Kenyon, Ph.D., Program Manager, NFRP, 301-619-7071