Our Research Funding Opportunities
The Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy (FPN) is committed to the goal of developing treatments and cures for peripheral neuropathy (PN) and funds activities that hold promise of identifying therapies for PN.
Applications will be accepted only from those with a Ph.D., M.D., or other equivalent professional degree, employed at a qualifying research institution.
The goals of our research grants program are to (1) encourage promising new investigators to undertake research on regeneration and recovery, particularly with respect to the peripheral nerves; (2) encourage researchers who are well-established in other areas to transfer their efforts to peripheral neuropathy research; and (3) enable researchers with novel ideas to test their ideas and develop pilot data for seeking larger awards from NIH and other funding sources.
Research grants are approved in a two stage process. Stage I – please complete our Letter of Intent (LOI) and submit it for review via email at [email protected]. If your LOI is approved for Stage II, we will notify you via email to complete our detailed online grant application that must be submitted no later than 4-6 weeks prior to the application deadline.
Applications for research grants are accepted from American or international investigators located at institutions that have clearly established lines of accountability and fiscal responsibility. Applications must include institutional assurances regarding research on human subjects and/or on animals, and must be signed by the individual responsible for administration of the contract. Funds are awarded to the principal investigator’s host institution; however, if the PI moves after the initiation of the contract to a new host institution, FPN will determine how the unexpended funds will be used.
The intent of these awards is to promote innovative and groundbreaking work, not to provide ongoing, long-term support. However, awardees are eligible to apply for subsequent funding, but such applications will be reviewed competitively.
The Review Process
All LOI’s are given preliminary review by the Foundation’s Executive Director and, if considered to be consistent with the FPN goals and guidelines, they are distributed to expert members of the Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) for review.
The SAB convenes to evaluate proposals, applying the criteria described below. Based on this review, funding recommendations are made to FPN Board of Directors, which decides final approval/disapproval.
Following Board action, notification is sent to applicants; feedback may be provided at the discretion of the SAB review panel. In all other cases, it is policy that written reviews will not be provided to applicants because alone, taken out of context of the complete SAB discussion, they oftentimes fail to convey the full and final consensus of the reviewers. The Executive Director of the Foundation, the principal investigator and the host institution negotiate contracts; the latter is the formal contracting agent.
Research proposals are evaluated on scientific merit and adherence to FPN’s priorities:
- Adequacy of prior research and theory in providing a basis for the research
- Adequacy of methods
- Adequacy of environment: facilities/equipment, available expertise, research “atmosphere”
- Qualifications and productivity of the PI and key staff
- Time commitments of PI and key staff
- Availability of subjects/patients (if human model is used)
- Adequacy of procedures for assessing the effect of interventions on recovery
- Any other factors that affect the potential of the applicant to address successfully the research aims.
Research Grantee Responsibilities
The responsibilities of recipients of research funding are clearly detailed in the contract signed by FPN, by the principal investigator and by the contracting institution. Some of these responsibilities include:
Grantees must provide FPN written progress and financial reports based on the terms of the grant agreement using FPN-specified formats.
Financial reports are to be completed by the office of grants and contracts of the contracting institution. All reports are to be made using FPN-specified formats.
The principal investigator is expected to share with FPN copies of all publications that emerge as a result of the funded research, during and after the period of the contract. The PI may also be asked to draft a lay-oriented description of the funded research, for publication in FPN’s newsletter or for other use.
The principal investigator is encouraged to make full use of research results using the usual avenues for dissemination (i.e., journals, conferences). FPN expects grantees to acknowledge the source of funding (“The Foundation for Peripheral Neuropathy”) in all such publications and presentations. Publicity releases or other public statements aimed at sharing results with lay audiences must be reviewed by FPN prior to issuance, to insure that such statements are congruent with reports made to FPN; if a serious lack of congruence is perceived, FPN will not allow its association with the research to be publicized. FPN is concerned that results of its funding program be responsibly publicized.
Research grant awardees must notify FPN if an application for patent or copyright is being considered, to allow us to participate in the application process if we judge this course to be the most appropriate in the given situation.
Funding Guidelines and Limitations
Requests to purchase major items of equipment are discouraged. Such funding may be allowed if the equipment reflects a change in research direction embodied in the proposal.
If equipment is to be purchased costing more than $2,500, the applicant must attach an explanation of the proposed disposition of the equipment following termination of the contract.
Funding of the PI’s salary is discouraged unless the application is for a post-doctoral fellowship. Other exceptions should be discussed with FPN’s Executive Director prior to application.
Indirect costs (i.e., administrative fees of the host institution) are limited to 10% of direct costs for salaries and fringe benefits only. FPN will not pay indirect costs for: travel, equipment, animals, and/or supplies). Exceptions should be discussed with FPN’s Executive Director prior to application. Total costs (direct plus indirect) cannot exceed the maximum allowable award.
You are welcome to submit your questions via email, at [email protected]. You will receive a response from the Executive Director or a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee.