AURI INTRAMURAL GRANTS PROGRAM


Intramural Grant Programs

Purpose

The Intramural Grants Program (IGP) is for all Augusta University investigators and is designed to assist and encourage faculty to develop research programs that can successfully compete for extramural funding, encourage collaborations, and to bridge funds when applicable.  The major objective of this program is to provide funding to initiate or refine a project and acquire the necessary preliminary data for submission of a major extramural grant application to a federal agency, national foundation, or other external funding entity. 

This program will include the following types of former applications:

  • Pilot projects – funding for all disciplines to assist faculty with initiating research projects or producing pilot data for extramural grant applications.  Priority will be given to applications designed to produce pilot data for extramural grant applications that target Federal programs (e.g., NIH, NSF, NEH, DARPA, DOE, DOEd, DOD or equivalent summary statement).
  • Bridge projects – funds that will allow faculty who have lost, or anticipate a loss of peer-reviewed extramural funding and have significant potential for future extramural funding. The primary goal is to enable faculty to continue their research by keeping teams together and maintain lab productivity as they seek to restore their funding.  Priority will be given to faculty with an NIH, NSF, NEH, DARPA, DOE, DOEd, DOD or equivalent summary statement.
  • Translational/Interdisciplinary/Collaborative projects – the development of multidisciplinary, translational and interdisciplinary research teams from diverse disciplines to address important areas of investigation identified by the NIH roadmap.

Eligibility

All full-time Augusta University (AU) faculty are eligible to apply.  Faculty with voluntary (“clinical” or “adjunct”) appointments are not eligible. Applicants can only hold one active Intramural Grants Program award at a time. 

Faculty who are receiving extramural or intramural funding from any other institutional source must demonstrate that there is no scientific or budgetary overlap with this application. 

Applicants with start-up and residual funds in excess of $50,000 are normally not eligible. An exception to this rule may be made in the case of Translational, Interdisciplinary and/or Collaborative projects, where the applicants (i.e., several collaborators) have definitive plans to submit a program project grant application, or a large multi-PI application (i.e., larger than the normal modular budget on NIH) or an equivalent.

To allow for broad distribution of limited funds, only under special circumstances would an applicant be considered for more than one area of funding at a time.  An applicant who has previously received and completed an Intramural Grants Program award may submit a new proposal on a separate topic; however, determination of funding may be affected by the outcome of extramural submissions stemming from the previous project. 

Awards

Awards are made for a one year period.  Budget requests are expected to be modest (e.g., normally in the range of up to $10,000 - $75,000, and must be justified.) 

Award amount range:

  • Applicants including a summary statement stemming from a highly scored but unfunded externally reviewed application can request up to $50k to $75k. Generally large funding amounts will be awarded to multi-PI, multidisciplinary and/or program project grant requests.
  • Applicants without a summary statement stemming from an unfunded external submission can request up to $25k. 

The required outcome from the grant award will be: 1) Preparation of a proposal to obtain external funding from a federal agency or national foundation; and 2) Final progress report and annual updates of publications and extramural submissions/awards and any other relevant project outcomes. 

Application Deadline

Applications will be accepted three times a year: March 15, July 15 and November 15.   When the deadline falls on a holiday or weekend, applications will be accepted on the next business day. 

Applicant Submission

A complete application includes all of the detailed items below in a single collated PDF file and submitted electronically to PILOTGRANTS@AUGUSTA.EDU.  Submissions that do not conform to this format will be returned. 

Prepare the application single-sided and single-spaced. Use standard size (8 ½" x 11") sheets of paper. 

Number all pages beginning with the Intramural Routing Sheet as page one. 

Use an Arial typeface and 11 point font size. (A Symbol font may be used to insert Greek letters or special characters; the font size requirement still applies.) Type density, including characters and spaces, must be no more than 15 characters per inch. Type may be no more than six lines per inch. Use black ink that can be clearly copied. 

  1. Intramural Routing Sheet - A completed and signed intramural routing form should be included as the first pages of your pdf application. 
  1. Cover Sheet (1 page)
    1. Project Title
    2. Name of PI and all faculty participants that includes their department and college affiliation
    3. Amount Requested
    4. Expected extramural submission/resubmission date 
  1. Applicant Face Page
  1. Faculty Track Record Form
  1. Letter of support from the Department Chair or Center/Institute Director - Include a letter from the department chair or center/institute director outlining their support for your protected time for this project as well as support for the space, equipment and other facilities required to conduct this project.
  2. Detailed budget and budget Justification - On a separate page, provide an itemized justification including the percent effort for all individuals to be devoted to the project, including the use of AU Core Labs. Budgets that are not clearly justified run the risk of being administratively reduced.  Indirect costs are not permitted. 

         The following categories are the only costs allowed for this program:

  • Non-faculty Personnel (Postdoctoral fellows, graduate students, technician salaries, etc.)
  • Supplies
  • Core Facilities
  • Animal care related expenditures 

         Faculty salaries are not allowed, other than summer salary plus fringe benefits for faculty with 9 or 10 month appointments.             Travel and equipment expenses are not allowed.  Equipment is defined as any individual item costing $5,000 or more.

          Core Facility Use - The SVPR encourages and will give preference to those who use AU Cores. Vouchers may be given in lieu              of dollars as part of the budget funding support provided.  A list of our Core Facilities can be found at                                                      http://www.augusta.edu/research/explore/core/index.php 

  1. Introduction to Application (for Intramural Grants Program resubmissions only) (~2 pages) - In response to a previous unfunded Intramural Grants Program review, summarize the substantial additions, deletions, and changes to the application and outline responses to the issues and criticism raised. 
  1. Research Description Abstract- Two hundred fifty (250) words maximum. Where possible, use language appropriate to the non-specialist scientific reader in the abstract. Remember that not all members of review committees and funding councils will be specialists in your particular field.
  2. Research Plan - The overall length of the research plan should not exceed 5 pages, and should follow the general guidelines set forth in sections A-D below.
    1. Goals and Specific Aims - (~1 page) Include a clearly stated hypothesis, and describe how your experiments will test this hypothesis.
    2. Innovation and Significance - (~1 page) Include a brief literature review, focusing on the significance of the problem and the gaps in existing knowledge. Provide a concise statement of the relevance of the research to human disease.
    3. Research Design and Methods – (2 pages) Describe the proposed experiments, including appropriate controls. Where alternative approaches exist, justify the choice of methods and state which are new to the investigator. For new methods, include the plans for putting these techniques in place. Consider potential pitfalls for key experiments.
    4. Plan for Extramural funding – (.5 - 1 page) Cite specific program announcements, areas of desired portfolio growth within NIH institutes or centers, or Roadmap, or other national funding agencies which the proposed research addresses. Include web links if available. If this application is for bridge funding and a recent summary statement is available from the external funding agency, describe the plan for responding to the most notable concerns.
    5. References Cited 
  1. Curriculum vitae (CV) – Provide a CV for the Principal Investigator and all faculty participations. 
  1. Other financial support - List all currently active and pending support, including any institutional intramural funding. List the specific aims of current and pending support and whether there is any scientific overlap with the proposed Intramural Grants Program work. 
  1. Copy of reviewer comments (“pink sheets”), if applicable and available. 

Applications will be accepted prior to approval by the IRB, IACUC, Radiation Safety, Institutional Biosafety, and Institutional Chemical Committees, as well as Augusta University Medical Center (AUMC) approval.  However no funds will be provided or expended until all applicable regulatory approvals are in place. 

Application Review and Criteria for funding

A Research Advisory Committee composed of faculty from Augusta University will review and rank the proposals and submit recommendations to the Senior Vice President for Research. The Funding Council (consisting of the Senior Vice President for Research and the Research Associate Vice Presidents) will consider both programmatic needs as well as scientific merit from the recommendations and determine final awards based on the following priority criteria: 

  • The merit and quality of the application.
  • Likelihood of significant extramural funding.
  • The productivity of investigators, which includes the number of recent extramural applications submitted.
  • Type of project [i.e., pilot, bridge, collaborative and Interdisciplinary projects (e.g., across departments and colleges)].
  • The level of support by the applicant’s home department.
  • Evaluation of other available institutional funds. 

The recommendations from the review committee on issues of scientific merit or institutional priority are not subject to appeal and should be addressed in a revised application. Administrative appeals based on conflict of interest or other issues of procedure will be considered by the Senior Vice President for Research.  Available critiques will be transmitted to the applicant after the meeting of the Funding Council. 

Conditions of Award

Funded proposals are awarded for one year and typically “No cost extensions” are not allowed. 

If you answered yes on your routing sheet that Augusta University Medical Center (AUMC) resources (which includes patients, facilities, equipment, personnel, and medical records) will be involved, then your proposal must be submitted to the Clinical & Translational Sciences Research Development Services (CTSRDS) for review and to obtain AUMC approval, if necessary. 

The Principal Investigator along with their Department Manager will be informed via e-mail of the account number and the project period. 

Unexpended funds will not be carried over beyond the project period. The award date will be established after all required approvals are in place. All institutional approvals must be in place within two months of receiving notification of the award or the award will be revoked. 

Funded proposals should adhere to the budget as approved. Re-budgeting requires written approval of Sponsored Program Administration. Unauthorized charges (any expenses charged to the account that do not specifically relate to the project and are not included in the reviewed budget and justification) must be removed within five business days of notification. 

Final Reports

A final report is due at the end of every award, and yearly updates will be requested. A final report template form will be e-mailed to the Principal Investigator at closeout. The final report should describe progress towards the original goals of the project, including  any abstract submissions to national/ international scientific meetings, peer reviewed journal articles (submitted, in press, published), and extramural applications submitted and awards received that were assisted by the Intramural Grants Program award. These reports will also be used to assess the Intramural Grants program return on investment. Publications should credit the support of the Augusta University Intramural Grants Program. 

AU’s Intramural Grants Program Administrative Contact: PILOTGRANTS@AUGUSTA.EDU

APPLICATION CONTENT CHECKLIST 

  1. Intramural Routing Sheet 
  1. Cover sheet
    1. Project Title
    2. Name of Principal Investigator and all faculty participants/collaborators to include their department and collage affiliation; Contact Information (i.e., phone numbers and email addresses)
    3. Amount Requested
    4. Expected extramural submission/resubmission date 
  1. Application Face Page 
  1. Faculty Track Record Form 
  1. Letter of Support from the Department Chair or Center/Institute Director 
  1. Detailed Budget and Budget Justification, highlighting planned AU Core use 
  1. Introduction to Application (for resubmissions only) 
  1. Research Description 
  1. Research Plan
    1. Goals and Specific Aims
    2. Innovation and Significance
    3. Research Design and Methods
    4. Plan for Extramural Funding
    5. References Cited 
  1. CV of Principal Investigator and all faculty participations 
  1. Other Support 
  1. Copy of reviewer comments (“pink sheets”), if applicable and available