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DCB Funding

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DCB funds and supports extramural basic research — research conducted by academic institutions and research foundations across the United States — that investigates the fundamental biology behind cancer.

Applications are peer reviewed, and the most promising are awarded, as allowed by the budget. Division staff monitors the grants after award to ensure the proposed scientific aims are completed.

Funding Opportunities

The Funding Opportunities page lists the most current opportunities from DCB.

Funding Mechanisms

DCB uses a variety of funding mechanisms to support investigator-initiated cancer biology research at academic institutions and research foundations.

Funding Opportunity Announcements (including omnibus Parent Announcements)

Special Research Initiatives

MERIT Award (R37)

The Method to Extend Research in Time (MERIT) Award provides longer term grant support to Early Stage Investigators (ESIs).

ESI R01 applications that receive a score within the NCI payline for experienced and new investigators are eligible for consideration to be converted to an ESI MERIT Award if all PIs have ESI status at the time of award.

NCI Research Specialist Award

The NCI Research Specialist Award encourages the development of stable research career opportunities for exceptional scientists who want to pursue research within the context of an existing cancer research program, but not serve as independent investigators.  

These scientists, including researchers within a research program, core facility managers, and data scientists, are vital to sustaining the biomedical research enterprise.

Outstanding Investigator Award

The Outstanding Investigator Award supports investigators with outstanding records of productivity in cancer research with up to $600,000 in direct costs per year for seven years to provide funding stability.

The award allows investigators the freedom to embark on long-term projects of unusual potential in cancer research; the opportunity to take greater risks and be more adventurous in their lines of inquiry; and sufficient time to develop new techniques.

Pioneer Award

The NIH Director’s Pioneer Award supports individual scientists of exceptional creativity who propose pioneering — and possibly transforming — approaches to major challenges in biomedical and behavioral research.

The proposed research must reflect ideas substantially different from those already being pursued in the investigator’s laboratory or elsewhere.

Pioneer Award Recipients

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