NHLBI MENTORED MINORITY FACULTY DEVELOPMENT AWARD (K01)

Release Date:  June 8, 2000

RFA:  HL-00-016

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov)

Letter of Intent Receipt Date:  July 21, 2000
Application Receipt Date:       September 12, 2000

PURPOSE

This program provides support to underrepresented minority faculty members, 
with varying levels of research experience, to prepare them for research 
careers as independent investigators.  The research development programs of 
the candidates are based on scholastic background, previous research 
experience, past achievements, and potential to develop into an independent 
research investigator.  The objective of the one-time award is to develop 
highly trained minority investigators whose basic or clinical research 
interests are grounded in the advanced methods and experimental approaches 
needed to solve problems related to cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, 
and sleep disorders.

HEALTHY PEOPLE 2010

The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health promotion 
and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2010," a PHS-led national 
activity for setting priority areas. This Request for Applications (RFA), 
NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award, is related to one or more 
of the priority areas.  Potential applicants may obtain a copy of "Healthy 
People 2010" at http://www.health.gov/healthypeople/.     

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

The NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award (K01) provides research 
development opportunities for underrepresented minority faculty members with 
varying levels of research experience who are committed to developing into 
independent biomedical or behavioral investigators.  The award will enable 
suitable faculty candidates holding doctoral degrees, such as the Ph.D., M.D., 
D.O., D.V.M., or an equivalent, to undertake three to five years of special 
study and supervised research under a mentor competent to provide guidance in 
the area of research proposed.  The goal is to develop the research skills of 
the minority faculty candidate.  The award is intended to serve research 
career development needs of underrepresented minority faculty members by 
providing them with research opportunities appropriate for their scholastic 
background, previous research experience, and past achievements.  Minority 
scientists and physicians with limited research experience needing guided 
course work and supervised laboratory experiences, as well as minority faculty 
needing only an intensive research experience under the guidance of an 
established scientist, are eligible to apply.  It is envisioned that most 
candidates for this award will hold non-tenured faculty appointments (such as 
instructor or assistant professor), although in some instances other 
individuals may be eligible to apply (such as individuals due to be appointed 
to a faculty   position or individuals with tenured faculty positions).

For the purpose of this program, underrepresented minority faculty members are 
defined as individuals belonging to a particular ethnic or racial group that 
has been determined by the grantee institution to be underrepresented in 
biomedical or behavioral research. 

At the time of award, it is required that at least two years have elapsed 
since the receipt of the doctoral degree and that the candidate have at least 
one year of prior documented research experience.  Current or past principal 
investigators of an NIH grant or its equivalent, including the Clinical 
Investigator Award, Physician Scientist Award, Clinical Investigator 
Development Award, or Mentored Clinical Scientist Development Award are not 
eligible for the NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award.  
Similarly, individuals serving as responsible investigators or project leaders 
on large grants, such as a Program Project Grant, are not eligible for award. 
 An individual who has previously received support from the Minority Access to 
Research Careers (MARC), Minority Biomedical Research Support (MBRS) Program, 
Academic Research Enhancement Award (AREA), or a minority supplement are 
eligible to apply.  

MECHANISM OF SUPPORT

This RFA will use the NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award (K01) 
mechanism of support.  However, specific application instructions have been 
modified to reflect "JUST-IN-TIME" streamlining efforts implemented by NIH and 
published in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 25, No. 10, March 
29, 1996.  This process allows applicants to submit certain information only 
when there is a possibility for an award.  It is anticipated that these 
changes will reduce the administrative burden for the applicants, applicant 
institutions, reviewers, and Institute staff.

For this RFA, no detailed budget is required.  However, total direct costs for 
all years must be provided in addition to the name, role on project, percent 
effort and narrative justification for all project personnel.  Instructions 
for completing the Biographical Sketch have also been modified.  In addition, 
Other Support information for the applicant is not required as part of the 
initial application.  Other Support information is required, however, for the 
mentor.  If there is a possibility for an award, necessary budget, Other 
Support information will be requested by NHLBI staff following the initial 
review.  The Application Procedures section of this RFA provides specific 
details of modifications to standard PHS 398 application kit instructions.

FUNDS AVAILABLE

The estimated funds (total costs) available for the first year of support for 
the entire program is expected to be $1.2 million in Fiscal Year 2001.  The 
actual amount may vary, depending on the response to the RFA and availability 
of funds.  Ten to twelve new awards are anticipated.

Background


The proportion of biomedical investigators who are members of underrepresented 
minority groups is strikingly lower than the percentage of minority U.S. 
citizens.  In 1991, there were 1177 Blacks (1.7%) and 1113 Hispanics (1.6%) in 
academic positions in the life sciences out of a total 69,122 individuals.  
Although the number of minority individuals graduating from medical school was 
approximately 7.4% in 1993, only 5.1% of assistant professors on medical 
school faculty are minority individuals.  One method of increasing the number 
of minority faculty members is to improve their research capabilities.  In so 
doing, the pool of minority biomedical and bio-behavioral investigators in 
cardiovascular, pulmonary, and hematologic research, transfusion medicine, and 
sleep disorders can be increased.  Furthermore, these minority individuals may 
serve as role models for minority undergraduate and graduate students, and 
stimulate these students to become more cognizant of research opportunities in 
cardiovascular, pulmonary, hematologic, and sleep disorders.  

PROVISIONS OF THE AWARD

Applicant Institution

Applications will be accepted from domestic colleges or universities, medical 
schools, or comparable institutions.  The application must include a plan that 
identifies personnel and other resources to be devoted to the candidate.  In 
addition, evidence of institutional commitment to the candidate's research 
development and level of effort should be included in a statement from the 
institution.  The statement should also address the institution's plans for 
the candidate during and following the tenure of the award.  The statement 
should be signed by an institutional official (e.g., a dean) and the 
candidate's departmental chair.
 
Minority Candidate
 
To receive an award under this program, individuals must have been awarded a 
doctoral degree (Ph.D., M.D., D.V.M. or D.O., degree or its equivalent) and 
have a faculty appointment at an accredited college or university at the time 
of award.  Candidates for this award must be either citizens or noncitizen 
nationals of the United States or have been admitted lawfully to the United 
States for permanent residence (i.e., in possession of the Alien Registration 
Receipt Card, I-155).  Noncitizen nationals are generally persons born in 
outlying possessions of the United States (i.e., American Samoa and Swains 
Island).  An individual admitted lawfully for permanent residence must submit 
with the application a notarized statement indicating possession of the Alien 
Registration Receipt Card.  Individuals on temporary or student visas are not 
eligible.

Candidates must be nominated by an institution on the basis of qualifications, 
interests, accomplishments, motivation, and potential for performing quality 
research.  The candidate's academic background, previous experience, and 
career goals should determine both the necessary length and the kind of 
program that is appropriate.  The applicant institution should provide a 
statement in the application that the candidate is a member of an 
underrepresented minority group and describe the evidence that this group is 
underrepresented.

Mentor

Each candidate must identify a mentor(s) who is an accomplished investigator 
in the research area proposed and has experience in developing independent 
investigators.  The mentor is not required to be affiliated with the applicant 
institution.  If the mentor is affiliated with another institution, 
appropriate documentation must be provided concerning the relationship of the 
applicant institution and the mentor's institution, as well as a clear 
delineation of the arrangements proposed for the research development program 
at a location distinct from the applicant institution.  The mentor must 
provide a written plan for the development of the candidate and provide 
guidance during the preparation of the research project.  A secondary mentor 
may also be proposed, but the primary mentor must continue to be involved 
throughout the award period.  In some cases candidates may choose to have both 
a basic research mentor and a clinical research mentor.  The mentor must 
provide a written plan for the development of the candidate, and the mentor 
and candidate should be jointly responsible for the preparation of the 
research development plan.  The mentor must submit a report each year on the 
candidate's progress which should be included in the annual progress report.  


Research Development Program

All research development programs should be carefully tailored to meet 
individual needs and must include a mentor(s) who is competent to provide 
appropriate research guidance.  All candidates must provide a full description 
of the research and career development plan for the period of the award.  The 
proposed plan must include hands-on research experience, with either a 
clinical or a basic science focus, for the entire three to five year period.  
Awardees, in conjunction with their mentor(s), are required to submit a 
detailed annual progress report.

For minority candidates with minimal research experience, the development 
program may be designed to start with a creative and detailed scientific 
learning experience and progress to an intensive research activity under the 
guidance of an appropriate mentor(s).  The first year or two of the program 
may incorporate any needed course work, and seminars and other educational 
experiences necessary to prepare the candidate for the subsequent research 
program, but must include a hands-on research experience.  This initial phase 
of the program may resemble a traditional postdoctoral research training 
program.  The remainder of the development plan could include an intensive, 
fully-described research program and research projects that can be reasonably 
completed within the planned period.  During this latter phase, the program 
should provide for progressive development of the individual into an 
independent investigator.

If the minority candidate has already acquired some research experience, as 
might be obtained through a research fellowship, but needs further development 
under the guidance of an appropriate mentor(s), the candidate may propose a 
three to five year program encompassing an advanced research experience 
focusing on a specific research project.  Such a candidate may take additional 
courses or engage in special instruction in research techniques in other 
laboratories for a reasonable period of time if needed.  During the latter 
phases of the award, the relationship of the mentor and candidate may more 
closely resemble that of collaborators.

Individuals with significant research experience in the proposed field of 
study should not apply for this award but rather should consider applying for 
independent research grant support.

Because the research training environment provides a powerful context in which 
to promote responsible research practices, all competing applications must 
include a description of formal or informal activities or instruction related 
to the responsible conduct of research that will be incorporated into the 
proposed research training program.

Advisory Committee

A committee composed of the candidate's mentor(s) and two or three other 
senior faculty members must be identified.  This advisory committee should 
meet with the candidate to review the research development plan and research 
project, to evaluate the awardee's progress, and to provide guidance for 
scientific career development.

Duration and Effort


The award is granted for three to five years depending on the needs of the 
candidate and the evaluation of the initial review group and the National 
Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory Council.  It is not renewable and all funds 
must be used on behalf of the original candidate.  Substitution of another 
mentor and/or a change of institution may be permitted with the prior approval 
of the NHLBI.  A minimum of 75% effort must be devoted to the research 
program.  The remainder may be devoted to other clinical and teaching pursuits 
that are consistent with the program goals; i.e., the candidate's development 
into an independent biomedical scientist or the maintenance of the teaching 
and/or clinical skills needed for an academic research career.

The candidate must have a "full-time" appointment at the applicant 
institution.  In general, candidates who have Veteran's Administration (VA) 
appointments may not consider part of the VA effort toward satisfying the 
"full-time" requirement at the applicant institution.  However, it is 
permissible for part or all of the research program to be conducted in a VA 
laboratory, for example if the mentor has a VA appointment, so long as the 
above conditions are satisfied as they apply to the NHLBI Mentored Minority 
Faculty Development Award.

Allowable Costs

Salary - Individual compensation is based on the institution's salary scale 
for individuals at an equivalent experience level.  Funding from this award 
for salary may not exceed $75,000 per year plus commensurate fringe benefits 
with at least 75% effort devoted to the research program.  If 100% effort is 
to be devoted to the research program during the "summer months," the percent 
effort for the remainder of the year may be reduced provided that the effort 
over the course of the year is at least 75%.  NIH policy permits 
supplementation of salary from non-Federal sources.  Supplementation from 
other Federal funds is not allowed unless explicitly authorized by the program 
from which the funds are derived and the NHLBI.  Under certain circumstances 
and with prior NHLBI approval, other NIH funds may be used for supplementary 
salary support if derived from a grant for which the awardee applied after 
receipt of the K01 award.

Mentor's Salary - Salary support may be requested for the primary mentor up to 
a level commensurate with 5% effort.  If the mentor is at a different 
institution than the applicant institution, arrangements for the transfer of 
funds for the mentor's salary and, if necessary, for research expenses should 
be formalized in a contract or written agreement with the mentor's institution 
and included as part of the application.  The mentor's salary support is 
considered as separate and distinct from funds requested for the candidate's 
salary or research and development support.  The percent effort may exceed 5% 
for selected periods of time, provided the total effort for the budget period 
(12 months) does not exceed 5%.  If the mentor's salary is requested as a 
consortium cost, the subcontracting grantee is only allowed to request 
Facilities and Administrative Costs based on 8% of total allowable direct 
costs.

Research and Development Costs - A maximum of $30,000 per year may be 
requested for research project requirements and related support, (e.g., 
technical personnel costs, supplies, equipment, candidate travel, telephone 
charges, publication costs, and tuition for necessary courses).

Facilities and Administrative Costs - Funds will be provided for the 
reimbursement of facilities and administrative costs at a rate of 8% of the 
total direct costs of each award, exclusive of tuition, fees, and expenditures 
for equipment.

Concurrent Applications


NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award applications may not be 
submitted or awarded concurrently with other NIH applications, such as the 
Independent Scientist Award, Mentored Clinical Scientist Development Award, 
Academic Award, or Research Project Grant.

Subsequent Applications for NIH Research Support

During the later years of the NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development 
Award (K01), incumbents are encouraged to apply for independent research 
support.  K01 recipients who are successful in obtaining NIH research grant 
support may not receive salary support from the research grant for the 
duration of the award except under certain circumstances and with prior NHLBI 
approval.  After the conclusion or termination of the award, salary support 
should transfer to the research grant.  K01 recipients who apply for research 
grant support are encouraged to include salary and all other research needs in 
the research grant application for the period following completion of the K01. 
 Alternatively, recipients of research grant awards may terminate the K01 
prior to the start of the research grant.

INCLUSION OF WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN SUBJECTS

It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups and 
their subpopulations must be included in all NIH supported biomedical and 
behavioral research projects involving human subjects, unless a clear and 
compelling rationale and justification is provided that inclusion is 
inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the 
research. This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993 (Section 
492B of Public Law 103-43).  All investigators proposing research involving 
human subjects should read the "NIH Guidelines for Inclusion of Women and 
Minorities as Subjects in Clinical Research," which was published in the 
Federal Register of March 28, 1994 (FR 59 14508-14513) and in the NIH Guide 
for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 23, No. 11, March 18, 1994, available at the 
following URL address: 
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/not94-100.html

NIH POLICY AND GUIDELINES ON THE INCLUSION OF CHILDREN AS PARTICIPANTS IN 
RESEARCH INVOLVING HUMAN SUBJECTS

It is the policy of NIH that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 21) 
must be included in all human subjects research conducted or supported by the 
NIH unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them.  This 
policy applies to all initial (type 1) applications submitted for receipt 
dates after October 1, 1998.  All investigators proposing research involving 
human subjects should read the "NIH Policy and Guidelines on the Inclusion of 
Children as Participants in Research Involving Human Subjects" published in 
the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, March 6, 1998, and is available at the 
following URL address: 
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/not98-024.html

Investigators also may obtain copies of these policies from the program staff 
listed under INQUIRIES.  Program staff may also provide additional relevant 
information concerning the policy.

URLS IN NIH GRANT APPLICATIONS OR APPENDICES

All applications and proposals for NIH funding must be self-contained within 
specified page limitations.  Unless otherwise specified in an NIH 
solicitation, internet addresses (URLs) should not be used to provide 
information necessary to the review because reviewers are under no obligation 
to view the Internet sites.  Reviewers are cautioned that their anonymity may 
be compromised when they directly access an Internet site.


LETTER OF INTENT

Prospective applicants are asked to submit, by July 21, 2000, a letter of 
intent that includes a descriptive title of the proposed research, the name, 
address, and telephone number of the Principal Investigator, the identities of 
other key personnel and participating institutions, and the number and title 
of the RFA in response to which the application may be submitted.  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 
NHLBI staff to estimate the potential review workload and plan the review. 

The letter of intent is to be sent to Dr. C. James Scheirer at the address 
listed under APPLICATION PROCEDURES by the letter of intent receipt date 
listed.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

The research grant application form PHS 398 (rev. 4/98) is to be used in 
applying for these grants, with the modifications noted below.  These forms 
are available at most institutional offices of sponsored research or from the: 

Division of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources
Office of Extramural Research
National Institutes of Health
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7910
Bethesda, MD 20892-7910
Telephone 301/435-0714
Email: grantsinfo@nih.gov
Internet: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html

The RFA label found in the PHS 398 (rev. 4/98) application form must be 
affixed to the bottom of the face page of the application.  Failure to use 
this label could result in delayed processing of the application such that it 
may not reach the review committee in time for review.  In addition, the RFA 
title (NHLBI MENTORED MINORITY FACULTY DEVELOPMENT AWARD (K01)) and number 
(HL-00-016) must be typed on line 2 of the face page of the application form, 
on the RFA label and the YES box must be marked.

The sample RFA label available at 
http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/label-bk.pdf has been modified to 
allow for this change.  Please note this label is in pdf format.

Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application and three signed 
photocopies in one package to:

CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC REVIEW
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH
6701 ROCKLEDGE DRIVE, ROOM 1040, MSC 7710
BETHESDA, MD  20892-7710

BETHESDA, MD  20817 (for express/courier service)

At the time of submission, send an additional two copies of the application 
to:

Dr. C. James Scheirer
Director, Review Branch
Division of Extramural Affairs, NHLBI
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 7216, MSC 7924
Bethesda, MD 20892-7924

Bethesda, MD 20817 (for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 435-0266
FAX: (301) 480-3541
Internet Address: js110j@nih.gov

It is important to send these two copies at the same time as the original and 
three copies are sent to the Center for Scientific Review (CSR).  These copies 
are used to identify conflicts and help ensure the appropriate and timely 
review of the application.

Applications must be received by September, 12, 2000.  If an application is 
received after that date, it will be returned to the candidate without review. 
The Center for Scientific Review (CSR) will not accept any application in 
response to this RFA that is essentially the same as one currently pending 
initial review, unless the candidate withdraws the pending application.  In 
addition, the CSR will not accept any application that is essentially the same 
as one already reviewed.  This does not preclude the submission of substantial 
revisions of applications already reviewed, but such applications must include 
an introduction addressing the previous critique.

REVIEW CONSIDERATIONS

Upon receipt, applications will be reviewed for completeness by the CRS and 
responsiveness by the NHLBI.  Incomplete and/or non-responsive applications 
will be returned to the applicant without further consideration. 

Applications that are complete and responsive to the RFA will be evaluated for 
scientific and technical merit by a Special Emphasis Panel in the Division of 
Extramural Affairs, NHLBI, in accordance with the review criteria stated 
below.  As part of the initial merit review, all applications will receive a 
written critique and undergo a process in which only those applications deemed 
to have the highest scientific merit, generally the top half of the 
applications under review, will be discussed, assigned a priority score, and 
receive a second level review by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Advisory 
Council.

Review Criteria

The following criteria will be considered in the evaluation of the proposed 
NHLBI Mentored Minority Faculty Development Award program:

o Candidate -- The candidate's overall competence as demonstrated by academic 
record and research performance, potential for a career as an independent 
researcher, and commitment toward pursuit of an academic research career.

o Career Development Plan -- The adequacy of the research career development 
plan, based on the candidate's past research experience, training, and career 
goals as demonstrated by such things as maintenance of a research laboratory, 
attendance at scientific meetings, and participation in journal clubs and 
research seminars.

o Research Project -- Scientific merit of the proposed research project and 
its appropriateness as a vehicle for developing the candidate's research 
skills.


o Mentor(s) -- The mentor's accomplishments in the scientific research area(s) 
proposed, experience and record in training investigators, and commitment for 
the duration of a candidate's research development.  A curriculum vitae with 
relevant publications and a list of current and pending research support must 
be included for all mentors.  Mentors should also include a list of current 
and past research trainees (not more than the last 10 years) with information 
on their current positions.

o Environment -- The applicant institution's ability to provide adequate 
facilities, resources, and opportunities necessary for the candidate's 
training, and the institutional commitment to the candidate.  If different 
from the applicant institution, the quality and extent of interaction of the 
faculty in the basic and clinical sciences, and the quality of the research 
and research training programs at the mentor's institution.

o Institutional commitment -- The institution=s commitment to the development 
of the candidate.

o Other Considerations -- The personnel category will be reviewed for 
appropriate staffing based on the requested percent effort and justification 
provided.

AWARD CRITERIA

The following will be considered in making funding decisions:

o Scientific, technical, and career development merit of the application as 
determined by peer review;

o Availability of funds; and

o Program balance among the research areas of the RFA.

INQUIRIES

Written and telephone inquiries concerning this RFA are encouraged.  The 
opportunity to clarify any issues or questions from potential candidates is 
welcome.

Direct inquiries regarding program guidelines, supplemental instructions, or 
programmatic issues to:

Lorraine M. Silsbee, M.H.S.
Division of Epidemiology and Clinical Applications (responding for all NHLBI 
programmatic Divisions)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7934
Bethesda, MD  20892-7934
Telephone:  (301) 435-0709
FAX:  (301) 480-1667
Email:  Lorraine_Silsbee@nih.gov

Direct inquiries regarding fiscal matters to:

Tanya McCoy
Grants Operations Branch
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
6701 Rockledge Drive, MSC 7926
Bethesda, MD  20892-7926
Telephone:  (301) 435-0144
FAX:  (301) 480-3310
Email:  mccoyt@nhlbi.nih.gov

AUTHORITY AND REGULATIONS

This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance, 
numbers 93.233, 93.837, 93.838, and 93.839.  Awards are made under 
authorization of Sections 301 and 405 of the Public Health Service Act as 
amended (42 USC 241 and 284) and administered under NIH grants policies and 
Federal Regulations 42 CFR 52 and 45 CFR Parts 74 and 92.  This program is not 
subject to the intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 
or a Health Systems Agency Review.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to provide a 
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco products.  In 
addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking 
in certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which 
regular or routine education, library, day care, health care or early 
childhood development services are provided to children.  This is consistent 
with PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of the 
American people.


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