Release Date: February 11, 1999

PA NUMBER:  PA-99-062


National Cancer Institute
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
National Center for Research Resources
National Eye Institute
National Human Genome Research Institute
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
National Institute on Aging
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
National Institute on Drug Abuse
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institute of Mental Health
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
National Institute of Nursing Research
National Library of Medicine

Application Receipt Dates:  May 25, September 25, January 25


The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is continuing to make a special effort
to stimulate research in educational institutions that provide baccalaureate
training for a significant number of the Nation"s research scientists but that
have not been major recipients of NIH support.  Since Fiscal Year (FY) 1985,
Congressional appropriations for the NIH have included funds for this
initiative, which NIH has implemented through the Academic Research
Enhancement Award (AREA) program and an annual Request For Applications. 
Based on the expectation that funds will continue to be available each year,
since 1997 the NIH invites applications for AREA grants (R15) through a
standing, ongoing Program Announcement (PA).

AREA funds are intended to support new ("type 1") and ongoing ("renewal" or
"competing continuation" or "type 2") health-related research projects
proposed by faculty members of eligible schools and components of domestic
institutions.  The AREA will enable qualified scientists to receive support
for small-scale research projects.  These grants are intended to create a
research opportunity for scientists and institutions otherwise unlikely to
participate extensively in NIH programs to support the Nation"s biomedical and
behavioral research effort.  It is anticipated that investigators supported
under the AREA program will benefit from the opportunity to conduct
independent research, that the grantee institution will benefit from a
research environment strengthened through AREA grants and furthered by
participation in the diverse extramural programs of the NIH, and that students
will benefit from exposure to and participation in research and be encouraged
to pursue graduate studies in the health sciences.


The Public Health Service (PHS) is committed to achieving the health promotion
and disease prevention objectives of "Healthy People 2000," a PHS-led national
activity for setting priority areas.  This PA, Academic Research Enhancement
Award, is related to one or more of the priority areas.  Potential applicants
may obtain a copy of "Healthy People 2000" at


Applicant Schools/Components:

All health professional schools/colleges and other academic components of
domestic institutions offering baccalaureate or advanced degrees in the
sciences related to health are eligible, except those that have received
research grants and/or cooperative agreements from the NIH totaling more than
$2 million per year (in both direct and indirect costs) in each of four or
more of the last seven years.  Note that this criterion of financial
eligibility is based on the amount of NIH research grant monies received, not
by the institution (university or college) as a whole, but by the individual
school/college or aggregation of "other academic components" (see definition
below) where the principal investigator has an appointment (e.g., School of
Medicine, College of Nursing, etc.).  To determine the eligibility of a school
or component with regard to this requirement, applicants should consult the
list of Ineligible schools/components on the AREA Web page at  If the name of the school does
not appear on the list, it may be eligible to apply for AREA grants.

For purposes of eligibility for the AREA program, the following definitions

o  "Health professional schools" (schools or colleges of medicine, dentistry,
osteopathy, pharmacy, nursing, veterinary medicine, public health, optometry,
allied health, and podiatry) means an accredited public or non-profit private
school that provides training leading to a degree granted by that school
(e.g., M.D., D.D.S., M.P.T., or equivalent degree).  The term "accredited"
means a school or program that is accredited by a recognized body or bodies
approved for such purpose by the Secretary of Education.

o  "Research grants and cooperative agreements" includes all extramural awards
designated by an activity code starting with R, P, M, S, K, or U, and also G12
and D42.  Scientific evaluation awards (R09, U09) are excluded.

o  "Other academic components" means all schools, departments, colleges, and
free-standing institutes of the institution EXCEPT the health professional
schools, taken as a SINGLE component.

An applicant school/component may submit several applications proposing
different research projects from different investigators.

Principal Investigator:

o  May not be the principal investigator of any active NIH research grant at
the time of award of an AREA grant (although he or she may be one of the
project personnel for an active NIH grant held by another principal

o  May not be awarded more than one AREA grant at a time (although he or she
may hold successive AREA grants).

o  May not submit an application to NIH for another research project grant for
essentially the same project proposed in a pending AREA application (in
accordance with the general NIH prohibition against the submission in the same
review cycle of more than one application for the same work).

o  Is expected to conduct the majority of the research at the grantee
institution, although limited use of special facilities or equipment at
another institution is permitted.

Scientists working in AREA-eligible minority or women"s educational
institutions are encouraged to participate in this program.


The R15 mechanism is used to designate applications and awards for AREA
grants, to distinguish the special objectives of these grants from those of
other types of NIH research grants.  This award will enable scientists at
eligible institutions to receive support for small research projects, either
for feasibility studies, pilot studies, and other small-scale programs that
would provide data preliminary to a traditional research project grant (R01)
or as support for an ongoing program of research.  Through this mechanism, a
maximum of $100,000 in direct costs plus facilities and administrative
(formerly, indirect) costs at the rate negotiated for the institution may be
awarded for a period of up to three years.  Allowable direct costs include
salaries for the principal investigator and other research personnel
(including students), supplies, equipment, travel, and other items
specifically associated with the proposed research project.  If necessary, a
no-cost extension of up to twelve months may be requested by the institution
to allow the principal investigator to finish the proposed project.

Supplemental Funding of Existing Grants

For Underrepresented Minority Students:  The NIH recognizes the need to
increase the number of underrepresented minority scientists participating in
biomedical and behavioral research.  Therefore, it is emphasizing the use of
administrative supplements to existing grants in order to attract
underrepresented minorities into biomedical and behavioral research. 
Principal investigators at domestic institutions who hold an active NIH
research grant (including an active AREA grant) are eligible to submit a
request for an administrative supplement to the awarding component that issued
the parent grant.  For the purposes of an active AREA grant, the request will
be to support a minority candidate who is a high school or undergraduate
student.  Exceptions to this rule may be made by the awarding component that
issued the AREA grant.  For a full discussion of this additional funding
opportunity and procedures for submitting a request for a supplement, see the
NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, May 14, 1999 at the following Web site:

For Individuals with Disabilities:  The NIH also recognizes the need to extend
opportunities to individuals with disabilities who are capable of entering or
resuming research careers.  According to the Americans With Disabilities Act,
a "disabled individual" is one who has a physical or mental impairment that
substantially limits one or more major life activities, who has a record of
such impairment, or who is regarded as having such an impairment. 
Accordingly, principal investigators of an active AREA grant may also submit a
request for an administrative supplement for this purpose to the awarding
component that issued the parent grant.  For a full discussion of this
additional funding opportunity and procedures for submitting a request for a
supplement, see the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, May 14, 1999 at the 
following Web site:



The NIH is the principal research arm of the Department of Health and Human
Services (HHS). At present, 22 awarding components (known as Institutes or
Centers) and several support and service Centers constitute the NIH.  The NIH
fosters the development of new knowledge in the biomedical and behavioral
sciences, the ultimate goal of which is to combat disease and improve the
health of mankind.  To achieve its goals, the NIH conducts research in its own
laboratories and clinics and it funds research conducted in research and
academic institutions throughout the world by means of grants, cooperative
agreements, and contracts.  The majority of grantees are academic
institutions, but other organizations (including for-profit organizations)
participate significantly in NIH-supported research.  The NIH provides funds
for research projects, research training, career development of new and
established scientists, and research and medical library resources.

Research grants represent the largest proportion of all NIH extramural awards. 
The research plan for each research grant application is generated and
developed by an investigator referred to as the "principal investigator."  On
behalf of the investigator, the institution submits the grant application to
the NIH for consideration for support.  Principal investigators of NIH grant
applications are most frequently affiliated with universities or medical
schools, and most hold doctorate degrees.  Requirements for who may be a
principal investigator on an application (e.g., tenure-track status,
citizenship status, etc.) are those of the institution, not NIH .

The NIH has long used a dual peer review system for the evaluation of
applications.  This system, which has a statutory base, ensures that only the
most meritorious and relevant proposals are considered for funding.  The first
level of review involves panels composed primarily of non-Federal experts,
referred to as scientific review groups (SRGs) or "study sections" that are
organized according to scientific areas.  These panels of experts render an
impartial review and evaluation of each application.  They consider not only
the scientific merit of a proposal, but also the background and experience of
the principal investigator, the research facilities available for the project,
and the appropriateness of the direct costs requested.

The second level of review is conducted by the National Advisory Council or
Board of the awarding component to which the application is assigned.  These
groups, composed of scientists, physicians, and laypersons who are leaders in
public affairs, are chosen for their expertise, interest, or activity related
to the awarding component"s mission.  The council or board will take into
account the relevance of the goals of the project in relation to the mission
of the awarding component, program balance, and the availability of funds.

The Center for Scientific Review (CSR), a component of the NIH, receives all
grant applications submitted to the NIH, assesses each one for relevance to
the health mission of the NIH, and assigns those that are acceptable to the
appropriate Scientific Review Group (SRG) for initial scientific merit review,
and to the appropriate NIH awarding component for consideration for an award.

The AREA program and its application, review, and award procedures have been
developed within this established framework for NIH grant-supported research

Research Objectives of the NIH Institutes and Centers

AREA grants will support small-scale, new or ongoing health-related research
projects, including pilot research projects and feasibility studies,
development, testing, and refinement of research techniques, secondary
analysis of available data sets, and similar discrete research projects that
demonstrate research capability.  Listed below, by awarding component
(Institute or Center) are the research topics of particular interest to the
Institute/Center under the AREA program.  Listed in the INQUIRIES section is
the AREA program representative for each of the participating Institutes and
Centers, a potential applicant is encouraged to contact the person listed for
the Institute(s) or Center(s) with interest in the applicant"s proposed topic
for additional scientific program information and for pre-application

The research objectives of the AREA program are those of the individual NIH
Institutes and Centers, as follows:

National Institute on Aging (NIA)

The NIA is interested in, and has responsibilities for, aging research that
includes fundamental studies of biological processes, including studies of
aging at the molecular, organelle, cellular, organ, and organ system levels,
the interaction of aging and diseases of aging, biomedical and psychosocial
factors in maintaining health\ and effective functioning in the middle and
later years, relevant social and behavioral relationships, and research that
broadens the base of knowledge underlying adequate health services for the
aging and the aged.  The Institute is interested in normal physiological and
biochemical changes with aging, involving areas such as immunology,
neurobiology, endocrinology, nutrition, and exercise physiology, as well as
clinical diseases and disorders of aging such as Alzheimer"s disease,
osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, falls, and urinary incontinence.  The Institute
also has responsibility for research concerned with the biological, social,
psychological, cultural, and economic factors that affect both the process of
growing old and the status and roles of older people in society.  Under this
broad mandate, health and wellbeing are viewed as the outcome of complex
biological, physiological, medical, psychological, and socioenvironmental

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)

The NIAAA supports basic and applied research on mechanisms of action of
alcohol on biobehavioral processes and effects of alcohol on the mind and
body.  Support is available to develop new knowledge in a wide range of areas
relevant to alcohol abuse and alcoholism, biochemical, physiologic, and
behavioral mechanisms leading to pathologic drinking behavior, alcohol-induced
organ damage, and clinical, behavioral, and epidemiological studies that will
lead to more effective diagnosis, prevention, and treatment.  The NIAAA
supports alcohol-relevant research involving all of the life-science

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

The objective of NIAIID"s research program is to acquire the knowledge which
will eventually lead to the treatment and prevention of infectious, allergic,
and immunologic diseases.  The Institute"s overall strategy of attacking the
array of problems on a broad front relies on free-ranging research in
microbiology and includes the following research problem areas:  isolation,
characterization, and biology of disease-causing microbes, antibiotic or drug
resistance among bacteria, viruses, and parasites, development of successful
and safe antimicrobial compounds, particularly for viruses and parasites, and
new approaches to understand and manipulate the immune system.

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS)

The NIAMS supports basic and clinical studies related to the rheumatic
diseases and to diseases and disorders of connective tissue, bone, and skin. 
Areas of research include:  inflammation, infectious agents and genetic
factors related to rheumatic diseases, structure and function of cartilage and
connective tissue, arthritis in children, systemic lupus erythematosus,
rheumatoid arthritis, - osteoarthritis, spondylitis and related syndromes,
gout and pseudogout, the structure and function of skeletal muscle, bone
structure, formation, degradation and repair, osteoporosis, biomaterials,
biomechanics, and joint replacement, inherited connective tissue diseases,
bone immunology and transplantation, metabolism of epidermis, dermis and
subcutaneous fat, immunologically mediated cutaneous disorders, photobiology,
photoallergy, and phototoxic reactions, vitiligo, psoriasis, bullous diseases
of the skin, and acne.

National Cancer Institute (NCI)

The NCI is the Federal Government"s principal agency for cancer research and
control.  Programs of the NCI focus on: (1) cancer etiology including
laboratory, field, and epidemiologic and biometric research on the cause and
natural history of cancer and means for preventing cancer, as well as studies
on the mechanisms of cancer induction and promotion by chemicals, viruses, and
environmental agents, (2) cancer biology and diagnosis research in the areas
of cell biology, immunology, molecular biology, developmental biology,
biochemistry, genetics, and pathology, (3) cancer treatment research in the
areas of drug development, biological response modifiers, and radiotherapy
development, including diagnostic imaging and clinical trials for curing or
controlling cancer, and (4) cancer prevention and control research,
development, technology transfer, demonstration, and education and information
dissemination programs to expedite the use of new information relevant to
prevention, detection, and diagnosis of cancer and pretreatment evaluation,
treatment, rehabilitation, and continuing care of cancer patients.

National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)

The goal of NICHD"s research programs is the improvement of maternal, infant,
and child health through support of basic and clinical research to elucidate
normal and abnormal growth, development, and maturation, from gametogenesis
through maturity.  To this end, NICHD supports research in:  reproductive
biology, chemistry, and medicine, fertility regulation, contraceptive
development and evaluation, perinatology, pregnancy, and labor, developmental
and clinical genetics, developmental biology, developmental neurobiology,
developmental and reproductive immunology, birth defects, population dynamics,
developmental endocrinology, social, cognitive, and affective development, and
the biological bases of behavioral development.

The NICHD also supports biomedical and behavioral research on mental
retardation and developmental disabilities, pediatric, adolescent, and
maternal HIV infection and AIDS, and, in the context of its National Center
for Medical Rehabilitation Research, NICHD also supports the development of
medical, behavioral, psychological, social, and technological interventions
designed to optimize functioning after impairment, disability, or handicap.

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)

The NIDCD supports biomedical and behavioral research related to the normal
and disordered processes of hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech and
language.  Basic and clinical studies are encouraged of genetic, molecular,
cellular, physiological, biochemical, and behavioral aspects of function in
health and disease. The Institute also supports research concerned with
disease prevention, health promotion and the special biomedical and behavioral
problems associated with communication impairments and disorders.

National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)

The mission of the NIDR is the advancement of knowledge concerning the
oral-facial complex in all of its aspects.  This includes the conduct and
support of research into the etiology, epidemiology, prevention, diagnosis,
and treatment of such dental diseases as caries and periodontal disease,
increasing our knowledge about craniofacial development and malformations,
studies of various oral soft tissue diseases, including herpes and oral
cancer, and increasing knowledge about orofacial pain and other oral sensory
and motor dysfunctions. Cutting across these oral disease or dysfunction areas
are research activities in such areas as salivary glands and secretions,
mineralization and fluorides, tooth pulp biology, nutrition, behavioral
studies, and research related to dental implants, replants, and transplants
and to dental restorative biologically comparable and derived materials.

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

The NIDDK conducts and supports research focused on a number of diseases that
are characterized by chronicity and long-term disabling effects.  Areas of
interest include: diabetes, cystic fibrosis, and other errors of metabolism,
diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, including the liver and gallbladder,
endocrine disorders, diseases of the blood, kidney and urological diseases,
and studies of nutrition and nutrition-related disorders.  NIDDK"s
responsibilities in these areas encompass investigations of etiology,
pathogenesis, diagnosis, and treatment.

National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

The research programs of the NIDA are devoted to increasing the understanding
of the causes and consequences of drug abuse, as well as to developing
effective treatments and treatment systems.  This goal is accomplished by
support of extramural research projects that improve and refine the methods
for the assessment, treatment and prevention of drug abuse.  The scientific
studies supported are broad and include:  fundamental studies on the
mechanisms of action of abused drugs, biochemical strategies for identifying
and developing successful drug abuse treatment agents, behavioral and clinical
pharmacology, services research, epidemiology, natural history and prevention
of drug abuse, treatment research, community-based research on reduction of
drug-taking behaviors, and studies of drug abuse as a contributing factor in
the AIDS epidemic.

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)

The NIEHS is the principal Federal agency for biomedical research on the
effects of chemical, physical, and biological environmental agents on human
health and well-being.  The Institute supports research and training focused
on the identification, assessment, and mechanism of action of potentially
harmful agents in the environment.  Research results form the basis for
preventive programs for environmentally-related diseases and for action by
regulatory agencies.  The NIEHS, thus, has responsibility for providing
knowledge to assist in societal decisions involving current and future
chemicals, processes, and other factors which may have impact on human health
either directly or indirectly by altering man"s environment.  This
responsibility mandates efforts toward a thorough understanding of the early
manifestations and the mechanism of human disease brought about by toxic
agents and the development of more accurate and more rapid methods to predict
and assess the toxicity of such agents.

National Eye Institute (NEI)

The mission of the NEI is to gain new knowledge concerning the normal
functions of the eye and visual system and the pathology of visual disorders. 
Working to this end, the NEI supports research and research training aimed at
improving the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of visual disorders and
fosters research in the rehabilitation of the visually handicapped.  Both
laboratory and clinical research are funded under the following major NEI
programs:  Retinal and Choroidal Diseases, Corneal Diseases, Cataract,
Glaucoma, Strabismus, Amblyopia and Visual Processing.  Within each program,
research ranges from attempts to elucidate the fundamental biological
processes that underlie disease to the development and clinical testing of new
diagnostic and therapeutic techniques.

National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)

The NIGMS supports non-disease-targeted research in the basic biomedical
sciences.  Research areas of interest include biophysics, cell biology,
molecular biology, genetics, pharmacology, and those areas of chemistry which
have relevance to biomedical problems.  The emphasis is on understanding basic
biological mechanisms, particularly at the cellular, subcellular, and
molecular levels.

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)

The NHLBI supports basic and clinical research pertaining to the structure,
function, and diseases of the cardiovascular, pulmonary, and blood systems. 
The Institute"s research program also includes transfusion medicine and blood
resources.  The NHLBI carries out its mission through a number of research
programs that provide support for projects ranging from studies at the
molecular level to whole body studies in man and animals.  Examples of
research areas supported by the Institute include atherosclerosis,
hypertension, cerebrovascular disease (directed at the dependent variable of
blood, heart, or blood vessel), coronary heart disease, peripheral vascular
diseases, arrhythmias, heart failure, and shock, congenital and rheumatic
heart diseases, cardiomyopathies and infections of the heart, circulatory
assistance, structure and function of the lung, chronic obstructive lung
diseases, pediatric pulmonary diseases, occupational and immunologic
interstitial lung diseases, respiratory failure, pulmonary vascular diseases,
bleeding and clotting disorders, disorders of the red blood cell, sickle cell
disease, and blood resources.

National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI)

The NCHGR is currently engaged in a research program designed to characterize
the human genome and the genomes of selected model organisms.  This research
program has the following interrelated goals:  the construction of high
resolution genetic linkage maps, the development of a variety of physical
maps, the determination of the complete nucleotide sequence of the DNA of
selected organisms, the development of the capability for collecting, storing,
distributing, and analyzing the data produced, and the development of
appropriate new technologies to achieve these goals.  This project will
develop a series of resources that will be available to the research community
to facilitate both basic research and the application of the knowledge gained
to the prevention, diagnosis, and therapy of disease.

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

The NIMH exerts leadership on behalf of the Nation"s mentally ill citizens by
creating a firm scientific foundation for the clinical care of mental
disorders, by developing and assessing innovative approaches to diagnosis,
treatment, and prevention of mental illnesses, and by exchanging information
nationally and internationally with all relevant individuals and organizations
to improve the state of mental health knowledge and its application.  The NIMH
conducts and supports an integrated program of basic and clinical research and
research training in biology, neuroscience, epidemiology, and psychology and
other behavioral sciences, as well as services research on the organization,
administration, and financing of mental health services and service systems. 
These studies include theoretical, laboratory, epidemiologic, clinical,
methodologic and field research on well and ill human subjects and populations
of all ages, and on animals where appropriate to the research questions.

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)

The NINDS serves as the focal point at the NIH for research on the nervous
system, including cerebrovascular disease (when the dependent variable is the
nervous system), the neuromuscular apparatus, and the special senses of touch
and pain.

National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)

The NINR supports research on the biological and behavioral aspects of
critical health problems that confront the Nation.  According to its broad
mandate, the Institute seeks to reduce the burden of illness and disability by
understanding and easing the effects of acute and chronic illness, to improve
health-related quality of life by preventing or delaying the onset of disease
or slowing its progression, to establish better approaches to promoting health
and preventing disease, and to improve clinical environments by testing
interventions that influence patient health outcomes and reduce costs and
demand for care.  The NINR is interested in studies containing innovative
ideas and sound methodologies in all aspects of nursing research consistent
with its mission.  Examples of areas of special interest include effects of
life threatening illnesses, management of symptoms associated with specific
diseases or illnesses such as diabetes, chronic wounds that fail to heal,
transplantation and mechanical ventilatory support, telehealth and
bioengineering interventions to address clinical problems, effects of life
threatening illnesses such as asthma, traumatic brain injury, and stroke,
prevention or reduction of risk factors, particularly in young children and
adolescents, prevention of low birth weight, interactions among genetic
factors, environment, and life style, developmental issues related to life-
stage transitions, and health of minorities and other underserved populations.

National Library of Medicine (NLM)

The objective of NLM"s research program is the support of investigations
related to the generation, organization, and utilization of health knowledge. 
Such support may involve: (1) medical informatics research, a branch of
investigation of the fundamental issues of health knowledge communication
vis-a-vis advanced computer technologies, (2) research in health science
librarianship and information science, or (3) assistance for the preparation
and publication of scientific works in the health area.

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM)

"The general purposes of the National Center for Complementary and Alternative
Medicine (NCCAM) are the conduct and support of basic and applied research,
... research training, ... and other programs with respect to identifying,
investigating, and validating complementary and alternative treatment,
diagnostic, and prevention modalities, disciples and systems" (P.L. 105-277). 
In order to meet this mandate, NCCAM supports research and training programs
that increase our knowledge of, and improve research methods on, complementary
and alternative medicine.  NCCAM supports all types of research including
basic, clinical, epidemiological and health services.

National Center for Research Resources (NCRR)

The NCRR administers programs that develop and ensure the availability of
resources essential to the efficient and effective conduct of human
health-related research.  NCRR programs are primarily institutional in nature
but, while support is generally in the form of resource grants, the NCRR makes
awards for support of projects which contribute to improvement of the
capability of resources to serve biomedical research.  The following are
research areas appropriate to the NCRR interests: (1) Research and Development
in Instrumentation and Specialized Technologies for Biomedical Research.  This
encompasses instruments, devices, and processes to facilitate research in
blomolecular and cellular structure and function. (Instrumentation includes
mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance, electron spin resonance,
equipment for fast kinetic research, X-ray diffraction, electron microscopy,
and flow cytometry.) The application of computer science, computer
engineering, and biomedical engineering to biomedical research problems is
also of interest. (This includes knowledge engineering, information
technology, computer graphics, image processing, computer modeling and
simulation, task dedicated computer systems, and development of implantable
microsensors and transducers.), (2) Research in Laboratory Animal Sciences.
(This includes the etiology, pathogenesis, and control of laboratory animal
diseases, as well as the environmental requirements of laboratory animals.),
and (3) Development of Biomedical Research Methods Employing Lower Organisms,
Tissues/Cells in Culture, or Mathematical and Computer Simulations.


It is the policy of the NIH that women and members of minority groups and
their subpopulations must be included in all NIH supported biomedical and
behavioral research projects involving human subjects, unless a clear and
compelling rationale and justification is provided that inclusion is
inappropriate with respect to the health of the subjects or the purpose of the
research.  This policy results from the NIH Revitalization Act of 1993
(Section 492B of Public Law 103-43).

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the
"NIH Guidelines For Inclusion of Women and Minorities as Subjects in Clinical
Research," which have been published in the Federal Register of March 28, 1994
(FR 59 14508-14513) and in the NIH Guide for Grants and Contracts, Vol. 23,
No. 11, March 18, 1994, and are available on the Web at the following URL


It is the policy of NIH that children (i.e., individuals under the age of 21)
must be included in all human subjects research, conducted or supported by the
NIH, unless there are scientific and ethical reasons not to include them. 
This policy applies to all initial (type 1) applications submitted for receipt
dates after October 1, 1998.

All investigators proposing research involving human subjects should read the
"NIH Policy and Guidelines on the Inclusion of Children as Participants in
Research Involving Human Subjects" that was published in the NIH Guide for
Grants and Contracts, March 6, 1998, and is available at the following URL

Investigators also may obtain copies of these policies from the program staff
listed under INQUIRIES.  Program staff may also provide additional relevant
information concerning the policy.


The PHS 398 (rev. 4/98) is the form to be used to apply for an AREA grant. 
The form may be downloaded from the NIH Home Page at  It is also available at most
institutional offices of sponsored research, or it may be obtained from the
Division of Extramural Outreach and Information Resources, National Institutes
of Health, 6701 Rockledge Drive, Bethesda, MD 20892-7910, telephone:
301/435-0714, email:  The PHS 398 application kit contains
instructions on submission procedures, "Section II. Submitting Your
Application" (pp. 21-22), that must be observed by AREA applicants.  Also
included in the application kit are "General Instructions" (pp. 5-6) and
"Specific Instructions" (pp. 6-20) for completing the application, these must
be adhered to, except where they have been modified by the following
Supplemental Instructions.

Supplemental Instructions

As AREA grants are one of the mechanisms included in NIH"s Modular Grants
initiative, applicants must observe the supplemental instructions for modular
grant applications contained in the Notice published in the NIH Guide for
Grants and Contracts on December 18, 1998
(   Briefly, the
features of modular grants related to application preparation include:  the
requirement that direct costs be requested only in modules of $25,000, the
omission of information on detailed budget categories and on pending "Other
Support," and the inclusion in the "Biographical Sketch" of information on
related research projects in which key personnel are currently participating
or have participated.  Some of the "just in time" aspects of modular grants
(e.g., the omission of detailed budget information) have been in effect for
AREA applications for several years.

Under modular grant procedures and the limits of a maximum length of award of
three years and maximum direct costs of $100,000, there are 14 possible budget
request combinations:

Length       Total
of Project   Direct Costs   Direct Costs Requested for
             Requested      Year 1     Year 2      Year 3

One year     $ 25,000       25,000        -           -
               50,000       50,000        -           -
               75,000       75,000        -           -
              100,000      100,000        -           -

Two years    $ 50,000       25,000      25,000        -
               75,000       50,000      25,000        -
                 "          25,000      50,000        -
              100,000       50,000      50,000        -
                 "          75,000      25,000        -
                 "          25,000      75,000        -

Three years  $ 75,000       25,000      25,000      25,000
              100,000       50,000      25,000      25,000
                 "          25,000      50,000      25,000
                 "          25,000      25,000      50,000

The specific instructions below refer to those items in the PHS 398
application form where the information requested, following from the Modular
Grant initiative or the AREA program requirements, either has been modified or
should not be provided at submission although the information may be requested
after initial review by the NIH awarding component if there is a likelihood
that the application will be funded.  (The page numbers in parentheses refer
to the pages in the application kit where instructions on the item appear.)


Item 2 -- Check the "YES" box and enter "Academic Research Enhancement Award"
as the title.  Do not enter a Number.  (Page 6)

Item 6 --The entire proposed project period must not exceed three years. 
(Page 9)

Item 7a --This amount must be requested in modules of $25,000. (Page 9)

Item 7b --This amount comprises the Modular Direct Costs requested in item 7a.
plus Facilities and Administrative (F&A) costs (at the institution"s
negotiated rate) for the initial budget period. (Page 9)

Item 8a --This amount must be requested in modules of $25,000 and must not
exceed $100,000, thus, the entire total direct costs of an AREA grant may only
be one of four specific amounts: $25,000, $50,000, $75,000, or $100,000. 
(Page 9)

Item 8b --  -This amount comprises the Modular Total Direct Costs requested in
item 8a. plus F&A costs for the entire budget period. (Page 9)

Do not submit this page.  It is not required, nor will it be accepted at the
time of application.  However, NIH may request this information just prior to
award.  (Page 11)

Do not submit this page as presented in the application kit.  Instead, a
Budget Justification page must be submitted (for samples, see, where the total
modular direct costs for the entire project period should be entered on the
first line and the total modular direct costs requested for each year of the
project on the second line.  This must be followed by a Narrative Budget
Justification as follows:

- Under Personnel, name all key project personnel (salaried or unsalaried),
indicate their role on the project and the percent effort of each, and provide
a narrative justification of their role and percent effort.  No individual
salary information should be provided.

o  The students who will be involved in the research should be included here. 
If they have not yet been individually identified, the number and academic
level of those to be involved should be provided.  Since a primary objective
of the AREA program is to support investigators at undergraduate institutions
that provide training in the sciences, principal investigators are encouraged
to include students in the proposed research to the extent practicable.

- If there are any Consultants for the project, provide their names,
organizational affiliations, and the services they will perform.

- Under Consortium/Contractual costs, if requested, provide an estimate of
total costs (direct plus facilities and administrative) for each year, each
rounded to the nearest $1,000.  List the individuals/organizations with whom
consortium or contractual arrangements have been made, the percent effort of
key personnel, and the role on the project.  Indicate whether the
collaborating institution is foreign or domestic.  The total cost for a
consortium/contractual arrangement is included in the overall requested
modular direct cost amount.

- If there is any variation in the number of modules requested, provide
additional narrative budget justification in explanation.

The Biographical Sketch provides information used by reviewers in the
assessment of each individual"s qualifications for a specific role in the
proposed project, as well as to evaluate the overall qualifications of the
research team.  A biographical sketch is required for all key personnel.  No
more than three pages may be used for each person.  A sample biographical
sketch may be viewed at:

For each key person, include within the three-page limit both the information
required per the instructions on the Form plus information on the ongoing or
completed research projects they have participated in during the last three
years  (for each, their role/responsibilities on the project, the overall
goals, principal investigator, and funding sources).  (Page 13)

For the principal investigator only, provide information on his or her:  (a)
experience in supervising students in research, and (b) other relationships
within the institutional framework (e.g., cross-departmental research
collaborations).  This information, while it will not be used in the
assessment of the scientific merit of the application, will be used in making
final funding decisions.  (Page 13)

OTHER SUPPORT - (Format Page 7-GG):
Do not submit this page.  However, the Biographical Sketch for each of the key
personnel should include information on the other projects that the person is
working on or has worked on that are relevant to the proposed project (see

RESOURCES - (Form Page 8-HH)  (Page 14)
In addition to the information requested on the Form, under "Other," provide
the following information which, while it will not be used in the assessment
of the scientific merit of the application, will be used in making final
funding decisions:

o  a profile of the students of the applicant school/academic component and
any information or estimate of the number who have obtained the baccalaureate
degree and gone on to obtain an academic or professional doctoral degree in
the health-related sciences since 1986,

o  a description of the special characteristics of the school/academic
component that make it appropriate for an AREA award, where the goals of the
AREA program are to: (1) strengthen the research environment of schools that
are not research intensive, (2) expose students in such environments to
research, and (3) provide support for meritorious research.

o  a description of the likely impact of an AREA award on the principal
investigator and the school/academic component.  How will the AREA award
strengthen the research environment of the school/academic component?  How
will the AREA award expose students to research?

o  a statement of institutional support for the proposed research project
(e.g., release time, other support, matching funds, etc.).

This page should be completed and submitted with the application.  If the F&A
rate agreement has been established, indicate the type of agreement and the
date. It is important to identify all exclusions that were used in the
calculation of the F&A costs for the initial budget period and all future
budget years.  (Page 19)

Do not submit this page.  Instead, this information should be provided in the
Narrative Budget Justification (see above).  (Page 20)


AREA applications are reviewed by scientific review groups administered by the
NIH Center for Scientific Review (CSR) and are evaluated for scientific and
technical merit according to standard NIH peer review procedures, as described
above (see Background).  Applications will be assigned on the basis of
established Public Health Service referral guidelines.  As part of the initial
merit review, a streamlined review process, which is employed for the review
of most NIH research grant applications, may be used.  Under this process,
reviewers are asked to identify the upper half of applications.  These
applications are discussed at the review group meeting and receive a "priority
score" ranging from "best" (100) to "average" (300), while the lower half of
applications are normally not discussed nor given a priority score. 
Nevertheless, all applicants will receive a summary statement, which will
consist of the written critiques of two or more of the reviewers participating
in the review group meeting.

The review schedule that will apply to AREA grant applications is as follows:

                                   Cycle I     Cycle II    Cycle III
Postmark Dates for:
  - AIDS-Related Applications      May 1       Sep 1       Jan 2
  - All Other AREA Applications:   Jan 25      May 25      Sep 25
Scientific Merit Review:           Jun/Jul     Oct/Nov     Feb/Mar
Advisory Council Review:           Sep/Oct     Jan/Feb     May/Jun
Earliest Project Start Date:       Dec         April       July

Review Criteria:  In carrying out the scientific and technical merit review of
AREA applications, the scientific review group will base its recommendation
and score (if the application is scored) on the overall impact of the
application on its field of study by considering the following review

(1) Significance: Does this study address an important problem? If the aims of
the application are achieved, how will scientific knowledge be advanced? What
will be the effect of these studies on the concepts or methods that drive this

(2) Approach: Are the conceptual framework, design, methods, and analyses
adequately developed, well-integrated, and appropriate to the aims of the
project? Does the applicant acknowledge potential problem areas and consider
alternative tactics?

(3) Innovation: Does the project employ novel concepts, approaches or method?
Are the aims original and innovative? Does the project challenge existing
paradigms or develop new methodologies or technologies?

(4) Investigator: Is the investigator appropriately trained and well suited to
carry out this work? Is the work proposed appropriate to the experience level
of the principal investigator and other researchers (if any)?

(5) Environment: Does the scientific environment in which the work will be
done contribute to the probability of success? Do the proposed experiments
take advantage of unique features of the scientific environment or employ
useful collaborative arrangements? Is there evidence of  institutional

In addition, all applications will also be evaluated with respect to the
appropriateness of the budget, the inclusion of children, minorities, and
women in clinical research projects, the procedures for the protection of
animal or human subjects, and the adequacy of protections for research
personnel from biohazards.  Further information about these considerations is
available at:

While it will not enter into the recommendation and score for an application,
an assessment will be made by the review group of each application with
respect to the special programmatic features of AREA grants (i.e., the
suitability of the applicant School/academic component for an AREA award in
terms of the extent to which it fits the goals of the AREA program, the likely
availability of well-qualified students, the evidence that students have in
the past or are likely to pursue careers in the biomedical and behavioral
sciences, the likely impact of an AREA award on the School/academic component
in terms of strengthening the research environment and exposing students to
research, and the extent of the principal investigator"s experience in
supervising students in research.  This assessment, which will be documented
in an administrative note in the summary statement for the application, will
be used in the second level of review by Institute  program staff and by
National Advisory Councils in making recommendations for funding.


AREA grants are awarded on a competitive basis.  Funding decisions on
individual applications will be based on the proposed research project"s
scientific merit as evaluated in the initial scientific merit review and its
relevance to NIH programs, and on the applicant institution"s contribution to
the undergraduate preparation of doctoral-level health professionals.  Thus,
after the initial scientific-technical review, applications receive a
second-level review by the National Advisory Council of the Institute or
Center to which the application has been assigned for potential funding.  In
conformance with the spirit of the House Committee Report 98-911 (to accompany
H.R. 6028, HHS Appropriations for FY 1985), special consideration will be
given in the funding decision process to applications from those "smaller,
less prominent, four-year, public and private colleges and universities which
provide undergraduate training for a significant number of our nation"s
research scientists but which have not shared adequately in the
growth of the NIH extramural program."

NIH implements this directive through the following policy:  Among projects of
essentially equivalent scientific merit and program relevance, preference will
be given to those submitted by institutions that have granted baccalaureate
degrees to 25 or more individuals who have obtained academic or professional
doctoral degrees in the health-related sciences since 1986.  In addition,
funding decisions will take into account those aspects of the application that
pertain to the appropriateness of and likely impact on the school/academic
component and principal investigator of an AREA grant.

Both annual Progress Reports and a Final Progress Report will be required of
all AREA grantees.


Inquiries are encouraged.  The opportunity to clarify any issues or questions
potential applicants may have is welcomed.  For inquiries of a scientific
nature, potential applicants should contact the Program Contact persons for
the Institutes whose scientific interests are closest to those of the proposed
research (see Research Objectives section above).  The Program Contacts for
the Institutes and Centers are:

National Institute on Aging
Dr. Miriam Kelty
Associate Director, Office of Extramural Affairs
7201 Wisconsin Avenue, Room 2C218
Bethesda, MD 20892-9205
Phone:  (301) 496-9322
FAX:  (301) 402-2945

National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
Dr. Laurie Foudin
Division of Basic Research
6000 Executive Boulevard, Suite 402
Bethesda, MD 20892-7003
Phone:  (301) 443-0912
Fax:  (301) 594-0673

National Institute on Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Mr. Al Czarra
Director, Office of Program Coordination and Operations
Division of Extramural Activities
Solar Building, Room 3C28
Bethesda, MD 20892
Phone:  (301) 496-7291
Fax:  (301) 402-0369

National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
Dr. Steven J. Hausman
Deputy Director
Building 31, Room 4C32
Bethesda, MD 20892-2350
Phone:  (301) 402-1691
Fax:  (301) 480-6069

National Cancer Institute
Dr. Robert Hammond
Associate Director for Program Coordination
Division of Extramural Activities
Executive Plaza North, Suite 600
Bethesda, MD 20892-7405
Phone:  (301) 496-2378
Fax:  (301) 402-0956

National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Dr. Susan Streufert
Office of the Deputy Director
6100 Executive Blvd., Room 4A01
Bethesda, MD 20892-7510
Phone:  (301) 435-6856
Fax:  (301) 402-4083

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders
Dr. Rochelle Small
Division of Human Communication
Executive Plaza South, Suite 400-C
Bethesda, MD 20892-7180
Phone:  (301) 402-3464
Fax:  (301) 402-6251

National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
Dr. Norman S. Braveman
Assistant Director for Program Development
Building 45, Room 4AN-24
Bethesda, MD 20892-6401
Phone:  (301) 594-2089
Fax:  (301) 480-8318

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
Dr. Walter S. Stolz
Director, Division of Extramural Activities
Building 45, Room 6AS-25C
Bethesda, MD 20892-6600
Phone:  (301) 594-8834
Fax:  (301) 480-3504

National Institute on Drug Abuse
Dr. Teresa Levitin
Director, Office of Extramural Program Review
6001 Executive Blvd., Room 3158
Bethesda, MD 20892-9547
Phone:  (301) 443-2755
Fax:  (301) 443-0538

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Dr. Jerrold Heindel
P.O. Box 12233, North Campus MD 3-03
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
Phone:  (919) 541-0781
Fax:  (919) 541-2843

National Eye Institute
Dr. Ralph J. Helmsen
Research Resources Officer
Executive Plaza South, Suite 350
Bethesda, MD 20892-7164
Phone:  (301) 496-5301
Fax:  (301) 402-0528

National Institute of General Medical Sciences
Dr. Norka Ruiz Bravo
Deputy Associate Director for Extramural Activities
Building 45, Room 2AN-32K
Bethesda, MD 20892-6200
Phone:  (301) 594-3910
Fax:  (301) 480-1852

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Dr. Ronald Geller
Director, Division of Extramural Affairs
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 7100
Bethesda, MD 20892-7922
Phone:  (301) 435-0260
Fax:  (301) 480-3460

National Human Genome Research Institute
Dr. Bettie J. Graham
Chief, Research Grants Branch
Building 38A, Room 610
Bethesda, MD 20894
Phone:  (301) 496-7531
Fax:  (301) 480-2770
E-mail:  bg30t@nih:gov

National Institute of Mental Health
Henry Khachaturian, Ph.D.
Office of Science Policy and Program Planning
National Institute of Mental Health
6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 8208 MSC 9667
Bethesda, MD 20892-9667
Telephone:  (301) 443-4335
FAX: (301) 443-3225

National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke
Dr. Joseph S. Drage
Training and Special Programs Officer
Federal Building, Room 1016
Bethesda, MD 20892-9190
Phone:  (301) 496-4188
Fax:  (301) 402-4370

National Institute of Nursing Research
Dr. Hilary Sigmon
Division of Extramural Activities
Building 45, Room 3AN-18A
Bethesda, MD 20892-6300
Phone:  (301) 594-5970
Fax:  (301) 480-8260

National Library of Medicine
Dr. Milton Corn
Division of Extramural Programs
Building 38A, Room 5N505
Bethesda, MD 20894
Phone:  (301) 496-4621
Fax:  (301) 402-0421

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Dr. Richard L. Nahin
Assistant Director
Building 31, Room 5B36
Phone:  (301) 496-4792
Fax: (301) 594-6757

National Center for Research Resources
Dr. Louise E. Ramm
Deputy Director
Building 12A, Room 4009
Bethesda, MD 20892-5662
Phone:  (301) 496-6023
Fax:  (301) 402-0006

Questions regarding eligibility, policies, procedures, and other
administrative aspects of the NIH AREA program should be referred first to the
Office of Sponsored Programs at the educational
institution.  Issues that remain after consultation with the institutional
Office of Sponsored Programs and that are not addressed in these AREA Program
Guidelines may be directed to:

Dr. Janet M. Cuca
NIH AREA Coordinator
Office of Extramural Research
National Institutes of Health
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 6192
Bethesda, MD  20892
Phone:  (301) 435-2691
Fax:  (301) 480-8443

These Program Guidelines and other information related to the AREA program are
available on the AREA Web page at:


This program is described in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance, No.
93.390.  Awards are made under the authority of the Public Health Service Act,
Title IV, Part A (Public Law 78-410, as amended by Public Law 99-158, 42 USC
241 and 285) and administered in
accordance with the PHS Grants Policy Statement and Federal regulations at 42
CFR Part 52 and 45 CFR Part 74.  This program is not subject to the
intergovernmental review requirements of Executive Order 12372 or Health
Systems Agency review.

The PHS strongly encourages all grant and contract recipients to provide a
smoke-free workplace and promote the non-use of all tobacco products.  In
addition, Public Law 103-227, the Pro-Children Act of 1994, prohibits smoking
in certain facilities (or in some cases, any portion of a facility) in which
regular or routine education, library, day care, health care or early
childhood development services are provided to children.  This is consistent
with the PHS mission to protect and advance the physical and mental health of
the American people.

Weekly TOC for this Announcement
NIH Funding Opportunities and Notices

Office of Extramural Research (OER) - Home Page Office of Extramural
Research (OER)
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Bethesda, Maryland 20892
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