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NCI Guidelines for ARRA Competitive Revisions

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NCI welcomes applications for Competitive Revisions that are consistent with the goals of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.  These opportunities are among several being offered by NIH to help fulfill the goals of the ARRA to help stimulate the economy through support of biomedical and behavioral research. Additional information on the Recovery Act and related NIH opportunities is available through the Office of Extramural Research

NOT-OD-09-058 - Availability of Recovery Act Funds for Competitive Revision Applications

Those with active NIH research grants may submit competitive revision applications to support a significant expansion of scope or research protocol. NIH has issued a clarifying Guide Notice that if a project was previously funded under a program or activity code with budget limitations or ceilings, these limitations or ceilings are not applicable to ARRA competitive revision and/or administrative supplement requests. Please see the NIH Guide Notice for details.

The NCI expects to devote at least $10,000,000 to this ARRA supplement program. Also, for this initiative, NCI will accept requests from all types of grants (activity codes) except for fellowships (F), individual K awards, training grants (Ts) and Conference grants (R13s and U13s). For additional information and application instruction go to

NCI General Guidance for ARRA Funds for Competitive Revision Supplements

NCI Program Specific Guidance for ARRA Funds for Competitive Revision Supplements

NCI General Guidance for ARRA Funds for Competitive Revision Supplements

  • Competitive revisions (formerly competing supplements) will be considered for research that scientifically expands the scope of a project.  Requests for revisions to active NCI research grants will be accepted as described in the NOT-OD-09-058
  • Revisions will be accepted in all areas of science and training supported by NCI; however, the following funding mechanisms are not eligible: F32, F33, individual mentored and unmentored research career development awards (K-awards). Cancer Education "R25E" grants with direct costs of more than $350,000 in any project period and "R25Ts" with direct costs of more than $600,000 in any project period are not eligible.
  • The awarding of a Competitive Revision Supplement to a T32 grant precludes the awarding of an Administrative Supplement (NOT-OD-09-056). 
  • Competing Revision Supplements may not be used to support the development of new or expansion of existing short term/summer T32, K12 or R25 programs.
  • Application Receipt Date:  April 21, 2009
  • As indicated in the NOT-OD-09-083 notice, two additional copies of the application (e.g., P01, P30, P50, U01, U10, etc.), which will be submitted on paper, should be sent to NCI as indicated below:
         Referral Officer
         Division of Extramural Activities
         National Cancer Institute (NCI)
         6116 Executive Blvd., Rm. 8041, MSC 8329
         Bethesda, MD 20892-8329 (for U.S. Postal Service Express or regular mail)
         Rockville, MD 20852 (for express/courier delivery)
         Phone: 301-496-3428
         E-mail: ncirefof@dea.nci.nih.gov
    In a brief cover letter, please mention NOT-OD-09-058, which is the relevant funding opportunity announcement, the NCI-funded parent grant number, and the assigned NCI program director.
  • Timeline for Review of Competitive Revision Applications: For FY 2009: Revision applications will be peer reviewed for technical and scientific merit by one or more NIH scientific peer review panels.   Selection criteria are detailed in the Notice (NOT-OD-09-058).  These supplements will go through the standard two-level cycle of peer review.  As such, competitive revisions will be reviewed for consideration by the National Cancer Advisory Board at its September 2009 meeting and notification of award by September 30, 2009.
  • Contact Information: Please contact the Program Director and/or grants management specialist
  • Other than the above, NCI does not have additional guidance for competitive revisions beyond the instructions in the NIH notice.  In all instances, grantees are strongly encouraged to discuss with the program director of the parent grant being considered for a revision. 

NCI Program Specific Guidance for ARRA Fund for Competitive Revision Supplements

Cancer Center Support Grants

Mechanism:  P30

Eligibility: To be eligible, the parent grant must be active at the time the revision application is submitted, and the activity proposed in the revision must be accomplished within the current competitive segment. That is, the period of support requested for the revision cannot exceed the current project period end date of the parent grant, including projects on a no-cost extension.
Also, a no-cost extension must be in place before the revision application is submitted.

  • Revision applications must be for costs to support new center objectives and aims (i.e., not previously peer reviewed) that fit within the existing components of the Cancer Center Support Grant. A request for funds to support work within goals and aims already approved within the parent grant should be submitted as an administrative supplement (See NOT-OD-09-056).  All revision applications must be submitted by the PD/PI of the P30 CCSG award.
  • Only one supplemental application per P30 award will be accepted. Receipt date is as specified in the NCI General Guidance section for competitive revisions.
  • Funding priority will be given to those applications that address ARRA priorities for hiring and preservation of jobs and support new center objectives and goals focused in the following areas. All applications must clearly specify the purpose/projects for which funds are to be used.   
  • Hiring new technical personnel for existing or developmental shared resources on a limited term basis to generate novel components, develop new technology essential to the goals of the P30, or provide new expertise that addresses gaps in translational research activities.
  • Short term, new, highly focused, technology/methodology development projects that will advance the research aims of the center (e.g., procedures, instrumentation, analytical tools, or reagents) and cancer research generally. This might include methodologies focused on molecular signatures of cancer in vitro or in vivo, biomedical imaging, model development, drug discovery, tumor targeting, drug delivery, survey development, and informatics.
  • Short term, highly focused, and new pilot project research initiatives that
    1. support priorities identified in the Cancer Center Directors Working Group Report of 2006;
    2. support collaborative research involving multiple investigators from different disciplines or institutions,
    3. take advantage/build value of research supported by other funding mechanisms by moving research toward new aims on the translational continuum, or
    4. address new issues specific to underserved and minority populations.

Budget/Funding: Requests should be limited to $200,000 in total costs for the entire period of the award (i.e., through September 30, 2010).  All funds must be obligated by that date. See NIH guide notice for further instructions on how to apply.

Receipt Date: April 21, 2009

Contact Information: Please contact the Program Director and/or grants management specialist assigned to the parent grant (listed on the Notice of Award) for which a revision is being considered. 

Cancer Training Opportunities

Mechanisms: T32; K12; R25, R25T and R25E (for additional information see general guidance)

Selection Factors: In addition to the factors described in NOT-OD-09-058:

The addition of trainee positions to an institutional training grant or institutional career development program constitutes new research objectives and aims that expand the scope of the original peer reviewed grant. 

For the K12 and R25T programs, an institutional letter of commitment is required.  The letter for the K12s must include a 75% effort commitment (9 person months) to each K12 Scholar.  

The R25E supplement must demonstrate that it can evaluate and disseminate the overall impact on cancer education during this award.  

Budget/Funding:

  • Competitive revision supplements are limited to $150,000 per year.  Competitive revision
  • supplements for a T32, K12 or R25Ts may request only up to 2 new trainee positions only at the postdoctoral (T32, K12, R25T) or junior faculty (K12, R25T) levels.  For the purpose of this supplement, allowable costs do not include procurement of additional equipment. 
  • The awarding of a Competitive Revision Supplement to a T32 grant precludes the awarding of an Administrative Supplement (NOT-OD-09-056). 

Receipt Date:  April 21, 2009

Inquiries:  Please contact the NCI Center for Cancer Training
Phone: 301-496-8580;  FAX: 301-480-1744

Contacts for T32 supplements:  Dorkina Myrick, M.D., Ph.D.; Sonia Jakowlew, Ph.D.; Lester
S. Gorelic, Ph.D.; Nancy Lohrey, M.S., MT-ASCP

Contact for K12 supplements: Dorkina Myrick, M.D., Ph.D.

Contacts for R25 supplements:

R25E:  Lester S. Gorelic, Ph.D.
R25T - Shannon Lemrow, Ph.D.;
and R25T - Dorkina Myrick, M.D., Ph.D.

NCI SBIR/STTR Grants 

Eligibility:  Current NCI SBIR and STTR Phase II grantees in all scientific areas are eligible tt
Apply. Competitive revision applications may not be submitted by NCI SBIR or STTR
Phase I grantees.

  • Applicants may receive a maximum of ONE supplement per small business concern (SBC) from one of two active NCI ARRA SBIR/STTR supplement programs. The current program (described herein) is for competitive revision supplements, which may be used to expand the project scope. The other program is for NCI ARRA SBIR/STTR Administrative Supplements, which may not be used to expand the project scope. An SBC seeking a supplement to an active NCI Phase II award may apply to only one of these two supplement programs.
  • The end date of the competitive revision supplement must not be later than the end date of the parent Phase II award, including projects on a no-cost extension at the time the competitive revision application is submitted
  • All direct cost categories are eligible. Equipment requests are limited to $50,000 for the project period (i.e., total duration of the supplement)

Budgets and Project Periods:

  • Applicants may propose budgets up to $300K (total costs) per year for 1-2 years ($600K maximum)
  • Applicants are encouraged to request support (50-100% effort) for 1-5 FTEs - Supplements can be used to convert employees from part-time to full-time

Submitting and Preparing an SBIR/STTR Competitive Revision Application:  Applications
should be submitted per the instructions in the NIH Guide Notice for Competitive Revision
Applications (NOT-OD-09-058) . In addition to the forms and documents requested therein, the
NCI SBIR/STTR Program requests that the following additional information be included in the
application in the section of the SF 424 form termed SBIR/STTR Information (distinct from the
PHS 398 Specific Research Plan):

An updated Commercialization plan (not to exceed 10 pages) that addresses the following
questions:

  • Has the applicant SBC identified a realistic market niche for their product/technology which addresses an unmet need?
  • Is the value proposition compelling and does the discussion clearly demonstrate a market-pull?
  • Has the applicant identified market-based milestones that are expected to be achieved over the next five years?
  • Does the applicant SBC demonstrate an understanding of the competitive environment and the market in which they plan to sell their product?
  • Does the SBC have a plan for establishing critical strategic partnerships that will be necessary to achieve long-term commercialization goals?
  • Have the customers been identified?
  • Has the company addressed potential hurdles that may delay or prevent acceptance of their product?
  • If appropriate, are the applicant SBC=s plans for generating a revenue stream reasonable, and are the revenue projections realistic?
  • How strong is the applicant SBC=s intellectual property (IP) portfolio/position (pertinent to the proposed project)?
  • Does the company have a reasonable strategy to protect its IP and build a sustainable business?
  • Does the team have a track record in successfully commercializing technology in this area?
  • A fundraising plan (to be included within the commercialization plan) that addresses the applicant=s current or future plans for raising additional third party funds (separate from SBIR/STTR funds) to move the project towards commercialization. This plan is expected to include the following information:
    • A summary of any third-party funding raised to date
    • A specific plan or strategy for securing substantial, independent third-party investor funds
    • The type(s) of independent third-party investor funds (i.e., cash, convertible debt, etc.) that will be secured
    • The source(s) of independent third-party investor funds (e.g., strategic partners, angel investors, venture capital, state funds) that will be secured
    • The anticipated timing or schedule for receiving independent third-party investor funds
    • A summary of all Previous Phase I and Phase II SBIR/STTR awards received from any Federal agency within the last 5 years AND a summary of products or services commercialized as a result of previous SBIR/STTR funding.

Application Review Criteria: See the NIH Guide Notice for Competitive Revision Applications (NOT-OD-09-058)

Selection Factors: Selection factors will include the three selection criteria listed in the NIH Guide Notice for Competitive Revision Applications (NOT-OD-09-058), plus four others related to the goals of the ARRA. Among the overarching goals of the ARRA are to provide investments to increase economic efficiency by spurring technological advances in science and health. Accordingly, additional selection factors will be as follows:

  • Strength of the overall plan to accelerate commercialization of the technology in order to achieve a significant benefit for cancer patients, physicians and/or researchers
  • Strength of the plan to leverage this one-time supplement by establishing critical strategic partnerships and/or securing third-party investments (i.e., non-federal funding) that will be necessary to achieve long-term commercialization goals
  • Strength of the plan to create jobs. Funding priority will be given to applications that request a minimum of 50% effort for at least two FTEs for at least one year
  • Economic impact of the supplement's duration.  Funding priority will be given to applications with a supplement project period of one year or more
  • Applications that propose to hire individuals from minority and disadvantaged populations will be viewed favorably.

Receipt Date: April 21, 2009

Contact in NCI SBIR Development Center for Questions:

Dr. Greg Evans: evansgl@mail.nih.gov; phone 301-594-8807
Dr. Ali Andalibi: andalibia@mail.nih.gov; phone 301-496-9686

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