Pilot Award Program

About the HTORR Pilot Award Program

The Pilot Award Program is a new component of our NIH-supported U42 program the Human Tissues and Organs for Research Resource (HTORR), and will support individuals that meet at least one of the following three high priority areas:

  1. Individuals from underrepresented populations in the U.S. biomedical workforce, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities and persons from disadvantaged backgrounds.
  2. Early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency.
  3. Established investigators that are transitioning to use human biospecimens.

The 2-year awards provided through our Pilot Award Program will include up to ~10 biological samples per awarded investigator, covering all costs associated with obtaining the biospecimens, including tissue preservation reagents and shipping costs. Beyond the service period and experimental analysis phase, the awardee will also receive supplementary support to develop grant applications to the NIH Institute that supported their award, and only applications that fall into the fields covered by these institutes will be reviewed.

The institutions currently supporting the Pilot Award Program are: 

  • Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP)
  • National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
  • National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
  • National Eye Institute (NEI)
  • National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
  • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Program Overview

Primary diseased and control human tissue samples are a vital resource for starting new programs focusing on human disease research, but they can be both expensive and difficult for investigators to obtain, especially before securing a grant. The Human Tissues and Organs for Research Resource Pilot Award Program (PAP) seeks to enable the completion of pilot studies necessary for an investigator to obtain subsequent funding. Specifically, we are planning to support individuals that meet at least one of the following three high priority areas: 1) individuals from underrepresented populations in the U.S. biomedical workforce, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and persons from disadvantaged backgrounds, 2) early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency, and 3) established investigators that are transitioning to using human biospecimens. These 2-year awards provide up to ~10 biological samples per awarded investigator, covering all costs associated with obtaining the biospecimens, including tissue preservation reagents and shipping costs. Pilot Award Program awardees will also receive additional technical support for tissue procurement protocol design to help bolster rigor and reproducibility in their experimental data and analysis.

Importantly, as this Pilot Award is intended to generate the preliminary data necessary for an investigator to obtain subsequent funding, a stipulation of this award is that the data generated through the completed Pilot Award study is expected to be used in at least one subsequent grant application to at least one of the following NIH Institutes by the end of the 2-year project period: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Eye Institute (NEI), the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), or the Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP).

Successful applications will include strong and compelling data supporting the biological rationale for the proposed pilot experiment(s) as well as a detailed explanation of how the proposed pilot experiment(s) will support at least one subsequent grant application with a clear timeline outlining both the proposed project and subsequent grant submissions.

Key Dates

Request for Applications Open: June 1, 2024

Application Deadline: October 1, 2024, 5 p.m. US EST

Anticipated Award Decision: December 2024

Anticipated Earliest Start Date: January 2025

Topics of Interest

HTORR is supported by a U42 grant funded through the Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP), with co-funding institutes of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Eye Institute (NEI), the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS). Therefore, only applicants whose work aligns with the current mission of these specified institutes will be reviewed.

Eligibility

Eligible Individuals

Eligible individuals must hold a faculty position with the title of assistant professor, instructor, research assistant professor, professor, or the equivalent at an academic, medical, or research institution and meet at least one of the following three high priority areas:

  • Belong to group(s) that has (have) been shown to be traditionally excluded in the sciences workforce
    • These groups can include women, persons with disabilities, persons from disadvantaged backgrounds (as defined by the NIH here), and minorities such as Black or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders. It is recognized that the traditionally excluded group(s) can vary from setting to setting and individuals from underrepresented groups not listed above may also be eligible to apply for this program. Please contact Grants@ndriresource.org for additional information.
  • Early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency
  • Established investigators that are transitioning to using human biospecimens

Eligible Organizations

U.S. public and private non-profit entities, such as universities, colleges, hospitals, laboratories, units of state and local governments, and eligible agencies of the federal government.

Application Components

It is highly encouraged that all applicants fill out and submit the Requested Tissue Information Form to NDRI at least 2 weeks prior to submitting a full application. This will allow us to evaluate and provide feedback about the feasibility of procuring the proposed tissues to researchers to aid in the development of successful applications and prevent the decline of applications due to non-feasible tissue requests. Submit forms to Grants@ndriresource.org.
In summary, the application must include:

  • Requested Tissue Information Form
  • Administrative Information Form
  • Personal Statement (2 pages maximum)
  • Lay Summary (500 words maximum)
  • Scientific Abstract (500 words maximum)
  • Specific Aims (1 page maximum)
  • Research Plan (6 pages maximum)
  • Background
  • Preliminary/Supporting Data
  • Experimental Plan
  • Timeline
  • Must include experimental milestones and planned grant application submissions.
  • References
  • Letters of Recommendation (minimum of 2, maximum of 3)
  • Additional Attachments
  • Applicant Biosketch
  • Biosketches for Collaborators (if applicable)
  • Letters of Collaboration (if applicable)
  • Signed HTORR Pilot Award Program Application Checklist
Peer Review and Selection Process
  • Proposals will be peer reviewed by a Scientific Review Committee made up of internal and external experts. Based on the applications received, additional experts may be invited to participate to ensure thorough and unbiased reviews.
  • The Scientific Review Committee will utilize the scoring rubric (linked here) to assess each application and assign a priority score.
  • Reviewer comments will be made available to each applicant. Priority scores will be provided only to the NDRI Internal Selection Committee for final application decisions.
  • For applications selected for awards, approval may be contingent on agreement from the PI to reasonably integrate specific recommendations suggested by the reviewers.
  • Application status notifications and other award-related correspondence will come from Grants@ndriresource.org. Applicants are advised to add this address to their safe sender list to ensure notifications are not directed to their spam folder.
Submission Information
  1. Start by reading the Request for Applications
  2. Then, fill out and submit the Requested Tissue Information Form
    1. Submit this form to NDRI at least 2 weeks prior to submitting a full application.
  3. Compile all application components including the Administrative Information Form and PAP Submission Checklist and submit to Grants@ndriresource.org

Request for Applications

View program overview, eligibility, submission process, and more.

Download the RFA

Requested Tissue Information Form

NDRI will assess feasibility of requested samples and provide feedback.

Download the RTIF

Administrative Information Form

Provide necessary administrative information for your application.

Download the AIF

PAP Submission Checklist

Use this to ensure all required application components are included.

Download the Checklist

About the HTORR Pilot Award Program

The Pilot Award Program is a new component of our NIH-supported U42 program the Human Tissues and Organs for Research Resource (HTORR), and will support individuals that meet at least one of the following three high priority areas:

  1. Individuals from underrepresented populations in the U.S. biomedical workforce, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities and persons from disadvantaged backgrounds.
  2. Early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency.
  3. Established investigators that are transitioning to use human biospecimens.

The 2-year awards provided through our Pilot Award Program will include up to ~10 biological samples per awarded investigator, covering all costs associated with obtaining the biospecimens, including tissue preservation reagents and shipping costs. Beyond the service period and experimental analysis phase, the awardee will also receive supplementary support to develop grant applications to the NIH Institute that supported their award, and only applications that fall into the fields covered by these institutes will be reviewed.

The institutions currently supporting the Pilot Award Program are: 

  • Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP)
  • National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
  • National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
  • National Eye Institute (NEI)
  • National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
  • National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)
Program Overview

Primary diseased and control human tissue samples are a vital resource for starting new programs focusing on human disease research, but they can be both expensive and difficult for investigators to obtain, especially before securing a grant. The Human Tissues and Organs for Research Resource Pilot Award Program (PAP) seeks to enable the completion of pilot studies necessary for an investigator to obtain subsequent funding. Specifically, we are planning to support individuals that meet at least one of the following three high priority areas: 1) individuals from underrepresented populations in the U.S. biomedical workforce, including women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and persons from disadvantaged backgrounds, 2) early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency, and 3) established investigators that are transitioning to using human biospecimens. These 2-year awards provide up to ~10 biological samples per awarded investigator, covering all costs associated with obtaining the biospecimens, including tissue preservation reagents and shipping costs. Pilot Award Program awardees will also receive additional technical support for tissue procurement protocol design to help bolster rigor and reproducibility in their experimental data and analysis.

Importantly, as this Pilot Award is intended to generate the preliminary data necessary for an investigator to obtain subsequent funding, a stipulation of this award is that the data generated through the completed Pilot Award study is expected to be used in at least one subsequent grant application to at least one of the following NIH Institutes by the end of the 2-year project period: National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Eye Institute (NEI), the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS), or the Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP).

Successful applications will include strong and compelling data supporting the biological rationale for the proposed pilot experiment(s) as well as a detailed explanation of how the proposed pilot experiment(s) will support at least one subsequent grant application with a clear timeline outlining both the proposed project and subsequent grant submissions.

Key Dates

Request for Applications Open: June 1, 2024

Application Deadline: October 1, 2024, 5 p.m. US EST

Anticipated Award Decision: December 2024

Anticipated Earliest Start Date: January 2025

Topics of Interest

HTORR is supported by a U42 grant funded through the Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP), with co-funding institutes of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the National Eye Institute (NEI), the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS). Therefore, only applicants whose work aligns with the current mission of these specified institutes will be reviewed.

Eligibility

Eligible Individuals

Eligible individuals must hold a faculty position with the title of assistant professor, instructor, research assistant professor, professor, or the equivalent at an academic, medical, or research institution and meet at least one of the following three high priority areas:

  • Belong to group(s) that has (have) been shown to be traditionally excluded in the sciences workforce
    • These groups can include women, persons with disabilities, persons from disadvantaged backgrounds (as defined by the NIH here), and minorities such as Black or African Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, American Indians or Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and other Pacific Islanders. It is recognized that the traditionally excluded group(s) can vary from setting to setting and individuals from underrepresented groups not listed above may also be eligible to apply for this program. Please contact Grants@ndriresource.org for additional information.
  • Early-stage investigators that are within 10 years of a terminal degree or completion of clinical residency
  • Established investigators that are transitioning to using human biospecimens

Eligible Organizations

U.S. public and private non-profit entities, such as universities, colleges, hospitals, laboratories, units of state and local governments, and eligible agencies of the federal government.

Application Components

It is highly encouraged that all applicants fill out and submit the Requested Tissue Information Form to NDRI at least 2 weeks prior to submitting a full application. This will allow us to evaluate and provide feedback about the feasibility of procuring the proposed tissues to researchers to aid in the development of successful applications and prevent the decline of applications due to non-feasible tissue requests. Submit forms to Grants@ndriresource.org.
In summary, the application must include:

  • Requested Tissue Information Form
  • Administrative Information Form
  • Personal Statement (2 pages maximum)
  • Lay Summary (500 words maximum)
  • Scientific Abstract (500 words maximum)
  • Specific Aims (1 page maximum)
  • Research Plan (6 pages maximum)
  • Background
  • Preliminary/Supporting Data
  • Experimental Plan
  • Timeline
  • Must include experimental milestones and planned grant application submissions.
  • References
  • Letters of Recommendation (minimum of 2, maximum of 3)
  • Additional Attachments
  • Applicant Biosketch
  • Biosketches for Collaborators (if applicable)
  • Letters of Collaboration (if applicable)
  • Signed HTORR Pilot Award Program Application Checklist
Peer Review and Selection Process
  • Proposals will be peer reviewed by a Scientific Review Committee made up of internal and external experts. Based on the applications received, additional experts may be invited to participate to ensure thorough and unbiased reviews.
  • The Scientific Review Committee will utilize the scoring rubric (linked here) to assess each application and assign a priority score.
  • Reviewer comments will be made available to each applicant. Priority scores will be provided only to the NDRI Internal Selection Committee for final application decisions.
  • For applications selected for awards, approval may be contingent on agreement from the PI to reasonably integrate specific recommendations suggested by the reviewers.
  • Application status notifications and other award-related correspondence will come from Grants@ndriresource.org. Applicants are advised to add this address to their safe sender list to ensure notifications are not directed to their spam folder.
Submission Information
  1. Start by reading the Request for Applications
  2. Then, fill out and submit the Requested Tissue Information Form
    1. Submit this form to NDRI at least 2 weeks prior to submitting a full application.
  3. Compile all application components including the Administrative Information Form and PAP Submission Checklist and submit to Grants@ndriresource.org

Request for Applications

View program overview, eligibility, submission process, and more.

Download the RFA

Requested Tissue Information Form

NDRI will assess feasibility of requested samples and provide feedback.

Download the RTIF

Administrative Information Form

Provide necessary administrative information for your application.

Download the AIF

PAP Submission Checklist

Use this to ensure all required application components are included.

Download the Checklist