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NIA Funding Policy for FY 2016

September 2016: Final Allocations for Competing Research Grant Awards, FY 2016

Pay line for CSR-reviewed applications
 

<$500k, General

<$500k, Alzheimer’s

>=$500k, General

>=$500k, Alzheimer’s

All applications except N.I. or E.S.I. R01s

11%

22%

7%

19%

N.I. R01s

19%

25%

16%

22%

E.S.I. R01s

21%

27%

18%

24%

N.I. is New Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award from NIH).

E.S.I. is Early-Stage Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award and within 10 years of finishing research training)

Career Awards, Fellowships and Small Business Funding

September 2016

From the general allocation NIA is paying career award applications to a score of 20 and Fellowship applications (from October 2016 Council) to a score of 30. For Small Business awards, we are paying Small Business Innovation Research awards (August 2016 Council) to a score of 34 and Small Business Technology Transfer awards to a score of 21. NIA will make an additional allocation to the August 2016 Council round of Small Business applications early in FY 2017.

From the Alzheimer’s allocation we are paying career award applications to a score of 33 and fellowships to a score of 40.

July 2016: Revised Allocations for Competing Research Grant Awards, FY 2016

Pay line for CSR-reviewed applications

Allocation, Costs:

<$500k, General

<$500k, Alzheimer's

>=$500k, General

>=$500k, Alzheimer's

All applications except N.I. or E.S.I. R01s

10%

22%

7%

19%

N.I. R01s

18%

25%

15%

22%

E.S.I. R01s

20%

27%

17%

24%

N.I. is New Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award from NIH).

E.S.I. is Early-Stage Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award and within 10 years of finishing research training)

Career Awards, Fellowships and Small Business funding

May 2016

From the general allocation NIA is paying career award applications to a score of 15 and fellowship applications to a score of 30. For small business awards, we are paying Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards to a score of 42 and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) awards to a score of 44.

From the Alzheimer’s allocation we are paying career award applications to a score of 33 and fellowship applications to a score of 40. We will announce the pay line for small business awards from the Alzheimer’s allocation after the final review round for the year is complete. For small business applications that is the August cycle.

Updated Allocations for Competing Research Grant Awards, FY 2016

April 2016

<$500k, Alzheimer's

Pay line for CSR-reviewed applications
 

<$500k, General

>=$500k, General

>=$500k, Alzheimer's

All applications except N.I. or E.S.I. R01s

9%

22%

6%

19%

N.I. R01s

17%

25%

14%

22%

E.S.I. R01s

19%

27%

16%

24%

N.I. is New Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award from NIH).

E.S.I. is Early-Stage Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award and within 10 years of finishing research training)

NIA-reviewed applications

NIA is paying NIA-reviewed applications through a score of 12 from the general allocation. The funding line for NIA-reviewed applications with a focus on Alzheimer’s research will be announced in the near future.

Administrative Cuts

General Allocation: NIA is continuing a policy of holding to an average reduction of 18% on all competing research grant awards within the general allocation with the exceptions of small grants awards (R03) and exploratory/developmental awards. These latter awards generally receive the study-section recommended amount of support. The 18% cut is an average. Individual awards are being reduced by more or less than that amount.

Alzheimer’s Allocation: NIA is awarding the study-section recommended amount of support within the Alzheimer’s allocation but with adjustments as deemed appropriate by staff.

Career Awards, Small Business Awards, Fellowships

Additional information on career award, small business, and fellowship pay lines will be available in May.

Future Update

NIA anticipates making a further update to our funding policy later in the year. Changes are likely in the Alzheimer’s allocation. NIA is also likely to support a substantial number of short-term high-priority (R56) awards to R01 applications that miss the pay line but represent a research project that both is likely to be substantially improved through short-term support and is on an identified high priority area.

February 2016

NIA received a full-year appropriation on December 18, 2015. The FY 2016 level is $1.6 billion which represents about a 33% increase over FY 2015 with most of the increase ($350 million) targeted toward Alzheimer’s funding. In addition to the increase for Alzheimer’s research, NIA’s budget increased 4.2%.

Even with these increases, competition for funding remains strong and NIA’s initial allocation of funds reflects both the quality of applications already reviewed and the anticipated quality of applications to be reviewed later this year. We will continue the practice we began last year: NIA developed two allocations of funds for FY 2016 for each of the major activity lines (research grant awards, training and fellowships, career awards). One allocation is for general topics on aging and the other allocation is specifically for research or training related to Alzheimer’s disease.

We anticipate some adjustment to both the general and Alzheimer’s allocations later in the year once the review of applications to be considered for funding in FY 2016 is complete.

NIH published the NIH Fiscal Policy for Grant Awards – FY 2016 on January 20, 2016. NIA is following the general guidelines for noncompeting continuation awards (Type 5) mentioned in that policy and is funding these awards at the full committed level for this year.

Initial Allocations for Competing Research Grant Awards, FY 2016

Pay line for CSR-reviewed applications
 

<$500k, General

<$500k, Alzheimer’s

>=$500k, General

>=$500k, Alzheimer’s

All applications except N.I. or E.S.I. R01s

7%

18%

4%

15%

N.I. R01s

10%

21%

7%

18%

E.S.I. R01s

12%

23%

9%

20%

N.I. is New Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award from NIH).

E.S.I. is Early-Stage Investigator (no prior R01 or R01-equivalent award and within 10 years of finishing research training)

NIA-reviewed applications

NIA is not establishing pay lines for NIA-reviewed research grant applications at this time. We will provide more details on the funding lines for NIA-reviewed applications in a future post.

Administrative Cuts

General Allocation: NIA will continue a policy of holding to an average reduction of 18% on all competing research grant awards within the general allocation, with the exceptions of small grants awards (R03) and exploratory/developmental awards. These latter awards will generally receive the study-section recommended amount of support. The 18% cut is an average. Individual awards may be reduced by more or less than that amount.

Alzheimer’s Allocation: NIA will award the study-section recommended amount of support within the Alzheimer’s allocation but with adjustments as deemed appropriate by staff.

Career Awards, Small Business Awards, Fellowships

At this point, from the general allocation, we intend to pay career awards through a score of 13. We intend to pay fellowships through a score of 30. We have not yet set a pay line for small business lines. We will post an update on these lines and on the additional pay lines for career awards and fellowships from the Alzheimer’s allocation.

FY 2016 Policy: Additional Appropriation

As described above, most of the 33% increase for NIA in FY 2016 is directed toward Alzheimer’s research in areas of strategic priority. These include applications received in response to recent funding announcements that target Alzheimer’s disease and extending the funding line for Alzheimer’s disease research and training applications.

NIA will distribute these new funds among single-year awards (incrementally funded, just as most awards are supported) and multi-year awards (funds for all years awarded in a single year). The overall aim is to maintain a stream of new competing dollars to support high–quality peer-reviewed research on aging and Alzheimer’s disease in subsequent years, where additional appropriations are uncertain.

Future Update

NIA anticipates making a further update to our funding policy later in the year. Changes are likely in both allocations and in most funding lines. NIA is also likely to support a substantial number of short-term high-priority (R56) awards to R01 applications that miss the pay line but represent research projects that are likely to be substantially improved through short-term support and also address an identified high-priority area.