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Clinical Pilot Research Program and Frontiers Pilot
and Collaborative Studies Funding Program

(FY 2016)
(Please Read Very Carefully and Take Note of Deadlines)  

Announcement Date: December 1, 2015
Letter of Intent Due Date: February 1, 2016 (5:00 PM CST)
Application Due Date: March 1, 2016 (5:00 PM CST)
Announcement of Awards: June 2016

The KUMC Research Institute and Frontiers: The Heartland Institute for Clinical and Translational Research is pleased to announce the availability of grant funds for research conducted by faculty members of Frontiers Institutions including Children's Mercy Hospital, the University of Missouri-Kansas City, KCU, KU-Lawrence and the University of Kansas Medical Center at Kansas City, Wichita and Salina. This Clinical Pilot Research Program is administered through the KUMC Research Institute, Inc.

The objective of the Clinical and Translational Pilot Research program is to promote research development in high-priority areas that can compete successfully for NIH or equivalent funding.  Special emphasis in this call is for projects that focus on the science of translation and on those that stimulate team science through collaborative multidisciplinary research teams. 

Scope of the Program  

The type of research supported by this program includes:

  • Studies on the science of translational research, i.e., on methods and approaches to doing translational research better.
  • Studies that promote team science and address researchable health issues from the perspectives of multiple disciplines.
  • Preclinical studies that are directly relevant to human health and use human cells or other human biological materials, with the endpoint of identifying new therapies or biomarkers.
  • Early bench to bedside research leading up to and including first-in-human and/or clinical proof of concept trials evaluating new drug treatments, medical devices and diagnostics.
  • Community-based clinical research studies using human subjects, families, and/or communities for testing new treatments or interventions, assessing new health outcomes, etc.
  • Studies of effectiveness and/or implementation and/or dissemination of clinical research findings in practice.

SPECIAL NOTE: Unless otherwise noted in the award letter, all awarded funds must be expended within the Frontiers funding year, although the actual research may continue until the final report is due.  Projects already initiated, including those with other support from internal, foundation, or similar sources, and for which the funds requested in this application could be scientifically justified as additional non-duplicative support, are eligible and encouraged.  

Eligibility Requirements

All faculty at participating Frontiers Institutions are eligible to apply if their applications meet the following criteria.

  • Adjunct faculty with primary appointments at another university may be co-­investigators but may not submit a proposal as Principal Investigator.
  • Applicants are eligible if they are on a faculty track or are independent investigators who are in a position that permits them to apply for extramural grants from their institution.
  • Applicants who have not progressed past the Assistant Professor level at the time of proposal submission will be considered junior investigators.
  • Principal Investigator(s), Co-Investigator(s) and all listed personnel must be legal residents of the U.S. or otherwise eligible to receive federal funding.
  • Proposals are expected to promote collaboration among investigators from different disciplines in support of team science.
  • Special consideration will be given to proposals that are informed by and responsive to patient, family, caregiver and community engagement priorities and proposals that provide home departmental/institutional/organizational matching or contributed funds. 
  • Only one proposal will be accepted per Principal Investigator (PI) (whether as a single PI or as a named multiple PI) in this funding cycle, although a PI on one proposal can be listed as a collaborator on other submitted proposals.  

Required Submission Items (In the following order) 

The proposal should follow the NIH format and include the following PHS-398 (Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Services) forms found at

  1. Face Page (Page 1): Contains project title and information regarding Principal investigator(s)/Program Director. Be sure to include if you are applying under the "Junior Faculty" designation.
  2. Project Description relating to broad, long-term objectives and specific aims, performance sites, key personnel and other significant contributors.  The project description must also address how the proposed work will lead to future extramural funding, how it addresses team science, and how it advances the science of translational research. (Page 2)
  3. Research Grant Table of Contents (Page 3)
  4. Detailed Budget (Page 4):
    • Budgets requests should not exceed $20,000 (no indirect dollars are awarded).
    • Equipment should not exceed 10% of the total budget
    • No faculty or PI salary is allowed; research staff and student salary is permitted
    • Any cost share funds available to the project should be identified and supported by a letter from the funding source.
    • Travel is not permitted unless clearly needed to collect data, and specifically documented.
    • Core Support:  Support from Frontiers cores ( can be provided to investigators in support of their proposals, and investigators are encouraged to use these resources as appropriate for their proposed studies. Use of specific Frontiers cores is not required. NOTE: Any costs that would be incurred by the use of specific cores (e.g., Biostatistics, CTSU, Informatics, Biospecimen Facilities, etc.) needed for the project must be included in the proposal budget and must have sign-off or a letter from the respective core director. Consultation services will be given on a "first come-first serve" basis. During the time of that consultation, specific charges for services and other support that will be included in the proposal budget should be obtained. It is highly recommended that advice be sought prior to the LOI deadline (February 1, 2016, 5:00 PM CST).  Consultation requests after that date will be on an "if available" basis.
  5. NIH Biographical Sketch: For all investigators, use the current NIH format that includes an initial project-specific paragraph about each investigator's role.  Also include information about past grant support and effort allocation on pending applications and current projects.
  6. Research Plan: To be typed in Microsoft WORD using Arial 11 font size and at least 0.5 inch margins. The research plan may not exceed five (5) pages (excluding references) and must include the following:
    • Specific Aims
    • Research Strategy
      • Significance
      • Innovation
      • Approach
      • Environment
    • Identify which data or other product from this pilot study will be included in a future proposal for funding from an extra-mural agency, organization or foundation (e.g., NIH, American Heart Association). 
    • The names of potential funding sources for which this pilot research will be used to support a proposal for future research, the probability of such funding and a planned date of submission.
    • References (not included in the 5 page limit)
  7. Appendix: Include measurement instruments and similar items.  The Appendix may not be used to provide additional data or information that should be part of the 5 page proposal.
  8. Letter(s) of Collaboration: From all members of the collaborative scientific team explaining their roles in the proposed research and confirming their agreement to participate in the project.
  9. Letter(s) from the Respective Chair(s) or Institutional/Organizational Official: Indicating support for time allocation of the investigator(s) to do the research and any other contribution to the project.  If applicable, documentation indicating any commitment of matching or contributed funds to support the research project. Departmental or other contributed funds are highly encouraged, but not required.
  10. Status of IRB or IACUC submission: Please provide updated documentation on where the proposal is in the approval process.  If approval has been granted, include confirming documentation. If approval is not complete, indicate whether or not it is currently in process and if so submit documentation and a copy of the IRB application. Please note that inclusion of study subjects must be monitored with regard to sex/gender, race, and ethnicity, as well as the inclusion (or exclusion) of children. NIH now requires all inclusion reporting for all pilot studies awarded funds from an NIH grant.  

Prioritization Criteria

The review criteria for this RFP are essentially the same as those used by Federal agencies such as the NIH, NSF and the Department of Education.  In addition to these common criteria, the following specific criteria apply to this particular RFP:

  • Potential for future external funding possibilities
  • Use of a team science approach
  • Focus on the science of translational research
  • Scientific, technical, or clinical significance and originality (innovation) of proposed research.
  • Appropriateness and adequacy of the research design and methodology proposed to conduct the research (approach).
  • Qualifications and research experience of the Principal Investigator and research team, particularly, but not exclusively, in the area of the proposed research (investigators).
  • Availability of the resources (environment) necessary to perform the research
  • Appropriateness of the proposed budget and duration in relation to the proposed research
  • Provisions for the protection of human subjects
  • Compliance with the Conflict of Interest Policy  

Peer Review 

The KUMCRI Research Committee in conjunction with the Faculty Assembly Research Committee will seek peer review of proposals through a committee composed of investigators from Frontiers institutions. Applicants may submit the names of up to three (3) persons they wish to exclude as reviewers, although no assurances can be made. The KUMC RI Research Committee and Frontiers Pilot Studies Program Steering Committee (not the review committee) will make the final determination on funding based, in part, on the reviews/critiques submitted by Frontiers peer-reviewers, potential for future funding, and other priorities (such as promotion of team science and research on the science of translation) with respect to available resources. It is possible that successful proposals will be funded from multiple sources.  

Key Deadline Dates and Details
(Please read carefully as changes have been made to the previous process) 

Announcement Date: December 1, 2015

Intent to Submit Application (Letter of Intent; LOI): Required by February 1, 2016 (5:00 PM CST). NO EXTENSIONS TO THIS DEADLINE

  • We will be using REDCap to upload both the LOIs and the applications in this grant cycle.
  • Please go to the following site to access REDCap (  This will get you to the REDCap LOI submission form. Please read the letter accompanying the LOI Application, fill out all of the required data blocks and then upload your LOI (MS Word, MS Excel; pdf).  Make sure that your LOI briefly (200 words or less) but adequately describes the research project to facilitate identifying expertise needed for the review of your application.  Please also make sure that the keywords that you list adequately summarize the work proposed.
  • Please contact Kelly Robertson at the KUMC Research Institute if you have any questions or problems (

Submission of Application: by March 1, 2016 (5:00 PM CST). NO EXTENSIONS TO THIS DEADLINE
Once the LOI has been submitted through REDCap, an email will be immediately sent to the email address listed in the LOI application.  The REDCap link to the full application will be supplied in this email.

  • Applicants should use this link to upload the requested information and the full application in the same manner as described above.

Announcement of Awards: June 2016

Funding Start Date:  June 2016 (or as soon as new NIH CTSA award begins). As a large portion of the funds used for these Pilot Awards is provided by the NIH CTSA award, all funding decisions are contingent on those funds being available. 

For questions or additional information, please contact the following individuals: 

Kelly Robertson 913-588-5436;
Jamie Caldwell 913-588-5589;
Peter Smith, Ph.D. 913-588-5970; 

Last modified: Apr 02, 2019