September 1, 2011

Applications for Pilot Proposals Requested for Pediatric Nephrology Grant

Center of Excellence in Pediatric Nephrology Center Pilot and Feasibility Proposals:

The Center of Excellence in Pediatric Nephrology Grant (P50) at Vanderbilt is submitting a competing renewal. In the event that this renewal is funded, pilot grants will be an essential part of the grant. We are therefore seeking applications for pilot proposals.

Two pilot grant proposals will be chosen to submit with this competing renewal, and will be funded then only in the event that the parent grant is successfully renewed. The guidelines related to eligibility and application procedures are shown below and should be examined carefully prior to submission of a grant application. The deadline for submission is Oct. 3. Grants receive review by a committee with internal and external members.

Guidelines relating to pilot and feasibility studies:

Pilot studies in any aspect of renal disease research can be supported by Center Grant funding. Such funds must be used for young investigators, investigators from other fields willing to bring their research expertise to nephrology, or for investigators currently in the nephrology area whose proposed research would constitute a totally new direction.

Pilot support is not intended for support of established investigators with ongoing research, but is intended to provide support allowing an investigator the opportunity to develop preliminary data sufficient to provide the basis for an application for independent research support through conventional granting mechanisms.

New pilot studies are limited to a maximum of two years support. An investigator is eligible for such support only once unless the additional proposed pilot study constitutes a real departure from his or her ongoing research. Awards are up to $50,000 per year in direct costs for two years for two Pilots. The grant period for the competing renewal is from July 1, 2012.

To be eligible for a pilot and feasibility study an individual must be a member of the faculty at one of the two institutions comprising our Excellence in Pediatric Nephrology center grant, or the institution contributing to our oversight committee, i.e. Vanderbilt University Medical Center/Meharry Medical Center or the University of Washington Medical Center or Duke University, as defined by the Medical School (rank of Instructor or above), or have special interest and expertise linked to the overarching aims of the P50 program, and must fit within the NIH Guidelines for eligibility.

Since eligibility for pilot and feasibility studies also depends on other criteria and is somewhat difficult to define precisely, some examples may be helpful.

1) A study proposed by an established investigator who has experience in areas other than nephrology and who wants to test his/her ability to contribute to the nephrology field.

2) A study proposed by a young investigator with an interest in a career in research in nephrology before he/she has yet developed to the point of being able to obtain individual grant support.

3) A study by an established investigator in nephrology who wants to pursue a question in a totally different area from their current research field.



The NIH requires that the application be submitted on the NIH form PHS 398, which can be obtained from the NIH website (

Please note: there is a five-page limit (excluding references) for the research description.

The application packet must include the following:

1) NIH Face Page (form page 1), signed by departmental grants manager or administrative officer

2) NIH Form Page 2 (project summary, relevance and project/performance sites)

3) NIH Form Page 2-continued (key personnel, other significant contributors)

4) NIH Form Page 4 (detailed initial budget period)

5) NIH Form Page 5 (entire budget & justification)

For each key person or other significant contributor, include their bio followed by their other support

6) NIH Biographical Sketch Format Page (maximum 4 pages; follow instructions)

7) NIH Other Support Format Page (active, pending & overlap statement; follow instructions)

8) NIH Resources Format Page (follow instructions)

9) NIH Continuation Format Pages (5-page limit for specific aims and research strategy combined).

Bibliography, and the following topics (if applicable) are not included in the five-page limit: human subjects, vertebrate animals, select agent research, letters of support, resource sharing).

10) The Appendix, if used, can only include papers that are “In press.”

If your research project involves human or animal subjects please contact the appropriate office for the necessary forms to obtain committee approval.



The completed application should be consolidated into one document (PDF preferred) and submitted via e-mail to by Oct. 3 and also with six hardcopies delivered or sent to:

Sarah Loftis
Pediatric Nephrology
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
1161 21st Avenue South, MCN C-4204
Nashville, TN 37232-2584


Awards will be for up to $ $50,000 per year in direct costs. Budget submissions should show direct costs only, and they should be for the grant period July 1, 2012- June 30, 2014. The respective federal indirect cost rate will be applied to all expenses and will be paid by the grant in addition to the direct cost amount awarded.



Persons considering submitting a proposal and not certain of their eligibility should contact Agnes Fogo, M.D. (615-322-3114 or, prior to grant submission for clarification since guidelines will be stringently applied. Proposed pilot and feasibility studies should present a testable hypothesis and clearly delineate the question being asked, detail procedures to be followed, and discuss how the data will be analyzed.