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Research Funding

Foundation for a Smoke-free World Issues RFP for Research at Nexus of COVID-19, Smoking

Deadline: December 15, 2020

The Foundation for a Smoke-free World seeks to conduct research at the nexus of COVID-19, smoking, and nicotine that requires significant collaboration and research involving outside experts and organizations.

Selected organization(s) will be expected to implement a range of projects relevant to the global pandemic, including well-designed and comprehensive pre-clinical, clinical, and epidemiological studies, to better understand the associations between smoking and/or nicotine use, and COVID-19 infection and outcomes.

The spread of COVID-19 has demanded that governments around the world take unprecedented steps to protect their citizens. This has meant restricting the movement of hundreds of millions of people around the world in an effort to limit the transmission of the disease. The situation has created unique challenges for people who are dependent on nicotine, including smokers, nicotine replacement therapy users, and users of alternative nicotine delivery products. There is emerging evidence that both nicotine use and smoking status may have an impact on COVID-19 infection rates and hospitalizations, as well as disease severity and mortality.

The underrepresentation of smokers in the available COVID-19 patient data and potential selection and measurement biases within existing research outputs requires well-designed epidemiological studies in order to obtain clarity about the true nature and impact of the relationship(s) between COVID-19 and smoking and/or nicotine use. To address current knowledge gaps, this RFP seeks to accelerate research in the following areas: the impacts of tobacco and nicotine products on COVID-19 outcomes; opportunities for interventions aimed at preventing or reducing COVID-19 infection, hospitalization, and disease progression; and/or interventions aimed at promoting healthier lifestyles (including but not restricted to nicotine use) in the wake of the pandemic.

To maximize the chances of getting results fast, the foundation seeks to undertake work in settings with sufficient COVID-19 cases and where smoking/nicotine use rates are in excess of 25 percent of the population for men or women. (The foundation will consider regions in which there are existing cohorts of smokers under observation for other reasons and where adding the above research plans are possible.)

Grants of up to $150,000 for scoping/pre-clinical studies, up to $250,000 for epidemiological studies, and up to $500,000 for clinical studies will be awarded. Recommended duration of the grant funding is up to three months for scoping/pre-clinical studies, three to six months for epidemiological studies, and up to twelve months for clinical studies.

The foundation encourages participation by groups whose work aligns with the foundation’s mission to eliminate smoking within a generation. These groups include institutions of higher education, nonprofits, commercial enterprises, governmental agencies, or other research-based organizations. Applicants should have a proven track record suitable for the area of research proposed. Previous research of tobacco and/or nicotine is appreciated but is not a requirement for funding. Successful applicants will likely have an interdisciplinary group of key personnel who can approach this project from their individual fields of expertise (e.g. epidemiologists, clinicians, behavioral economists, basic scientists, and public health specialists). The foundation expects successful applicants to conduct research and publish findings according to Open Science principles, including: declaring hypotheses and proposed analyses up front; making raw data available for analysis; publishing all results, whether positive or negative; and publishing in journals that offer open access.

Applicants should be aware that the foundation’s Initial funding came from Phillip Morris International (PMI). The foundation has nonprofit status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and by law and policy must operate independently from PMI.

All interested parties should submit a detailed proposal for work to the foundation using its online application system. There is no page requirement for submissions, however the application form has links to three templates that must be fully completed for an application to be considered. Applicants will also have the option to upload additional relevant documentation.

The application portal will close at 6:00 p.m. EST on December 15, 2020. In order to capture studies that address various timeframes during the COVID-19 pandemic cycle, the foundation will review and evaluate submitted proposals monthly until closing.

For additional, and FAQ, and a link to the online portal, see the Foundation for a Smoke-free World website.

Link to complete RFP

American Association of Critical Care Nurses Invites Applications for Impact Research Grants

Deadline: October 30, 2020

The American Association of Critical-Care Nurses is inviting applications for its Impact Research Grants program.

Through the program, three grants of up to $50,000 over two years will be awarded in support of projects that support inquiry and systematic research aimed at generating new knowledge with respect to ensuring the safety of and excellent care for critically ill patients and their families. The grants also are intended to facilitate research in support of other AACN priorities, such as describing the impact of family presence, influencing nurse certification, and implementing standards for healthy work environments.

To be eligible, PIs must be an AACN member and hold an earned master’s degree or have completed candidacy requirements in a BSN-to-PhD or DNP program.

See the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses website for complete program guidelines and application instructions. Link to complete RFP

Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation Invites Applications for Neuroimaging and CSF Biomarker Development Program

LOI Deadline: October 9, 2020

The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation welcomes Letters of Intent for its Neuroimaging and CSF Biomarker Development Program.

According to ADDF, the RFP is focused on developing novel PET ligands for clinical use; supporting novel CSF biomarkers; and validating established MRI approaches in larger cohorts. Novel biomarkers of neuroinflammation and synaptic integrity are considered a high priority. Other target areas of interest include neuronal loss, vascular injury and blood-brain barrier integrity, mitochondria and metabolic function, protein misfolding/proteostasis, oxidative stress, white matter changes, and other novel targets supported by compelling biological rationale and connection to disease. ADDF has limited interest in CSF measures of amyloid and tau.

Grants of up to $600,000 will be awarded in support of the advancement of neuroimaging and CSF biomarkers that can do one or more of the following:

Demonstrate Target Engagement for Novel Therapeutics — Biomarkers that can serve as direct measures of target engagement for novel drugs in clinical development. Priority will be given to projects advancing biomarkers that can be used as specific companion biomarkers for therapies currently in the development pipeline; identification of such therapies will strengthen an application.

Detect Signs of Disease Earlier and Monitor Progression — Programs aimed at developing sensitive biomarkers that can detect disease earlier than currently available biomarkers. This includes biomarkers that can predict and monitor conversion from cognitively healthy to mild cognitive impairment (MCI), or MCI to Alzheimer’s disease. ADDF also seeks prognostic markers that can predict rates of cognitive decline.

More Accurately Diagnose and Distinguish Between Dementia Subtypes — Many types of dementia can present with similar clinical features, and patients often show overlapping pathologies. At present, it is challenging to distinguish between dementia subtypes and proteinopathies. Biomarkers that can distinguish between subtypes and stratify patients in clinical trials are a high priority.

Eligible applicants include researchers and clinicians at academic medical centers, universities, nonprofits, and biotechnology companies worldwide. Existing companies and new spinouts also are eligible, and industry partnerships are strongly encouraged.

Letters of Intent are due October 9. Upon review, selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal by November 6, 2020.

See the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation website for complete program details, eligibility criteria, and a link to the application portal.Link to complete RFP