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Preterm Birth Initiative

Grants to USA and Canada Postdoctoral Fellows for
Scientific and Medical Research on Premature Birth

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF)

Deadline Date:

12/04/18 4:00 PM EDT


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Grants to USA and Canada postdoctoral fellows at IHEs for research addressing the biological mechanisms of preterm birth. Proposals may involve computational or molecular approaches, such as immunology, mathematics, genetics, genomics, evolutionary biology, engineering, and other basic sciences. These approaches hold enormous potential for new insights independently or in conjunction with more traditional areas of parturition research such as maternal fetal medicine, obstetrics, and pediatrics.

The formation of new connections between reproductive scientists and investigators who are involved in other areas will give preterm birth research a fresh and unique look, and stimulate a new workface to tackle this challenge.

The initiative is designed to stimulate both individual scientists and multi-investigator teams to approach the problem of preterm birth using creative basic and translation science methods. Postdoctoral fellows nearing their transition to independent investigator status through senior established investigators are encouraged to apply.

Proposals should address the biomedical causes and molecular mechanisms underlying (preterm) parturition including but not limited to peri-implantational events, placentation, fetal determinants, fetal-maternal immune responses, biological basis for racial-ethnic disparities, mechanisms relating preterm birth to other adverse pregnancy outcomes, biology of normal labor, genomics, evolutionary influences and other approaches. Proposals seeking to identify biomarkers predicting preterm birth are welcome.

BWF strongly encourages applications from women and underrepresented minorities, including Blacks or African-Americans, Hispanics or Latinos, Native Americans, Alaskan Natives or Native Hawaiians.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 176023

Number of Grants:

Up to 6 research grants will be awarded in this award cycle.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Research grants will provide $500,000 over a four-year period ($125,000 per year).

Term of Contract:

The grant period is June 1, 2019 - March 31, 2023 (4 years).

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Proposals must be submitted from degree-granting institutions in the United States or Canada.

The principal investigator must be a postdoctoral fellow in the final 1-2 years of postdoctoral training or hold a faculty appointment (assistant/associate/ professor-level status) at a degree-granting institution in the U.S. or Canada.

Researchers working at research institutes, national laboratories, within the federal government, or outside of North America may be partners or collaborators but all funding must be channeled through the U.S. or Canadian degree-granting institution of the principal investigator.

Citizens and non-citizen permanent and temporary residents of the U.S. and Canada who are legally quali ed to work in the U.S. or Canada are eligible.

Candidates who are temporary U.S. residents must hold a valid U.S. visa (J-1, H1B, F-1 or O-1 visas).

Temporary Canadian residents must hold a valid Canadian visa (Study Permit, C-43, C-44, C-10, or C-20 work permits/visas).

If you are a postdoctoral candidate, your visa status must allow you to remain in the U.S. or Canada during the project period of the grant. If a grant is awarded and your visa does not allow for such a stay, BWF may terminate the grant. BWF will not intercede on behalf of non-citizens whose stay in the U.S. or Canada falls out of visa compliance.

Proposals can be submitted by individual investigators or research teams designating a contact principal investigator. At least one member of the team must have training and expertise outside the traditional areas of reproductive science.

Proposals that cross institutional boundaries (partnerships between multiple universities or collaborations within larger universities) are welcomed.

Current or active preterm birth grant recipients are not eligible to reapply.

Former preterm birth recipients whose grant has been completed may reapply for another award provided the proposal submitted is a substantially different proposal (must not be a continuation or slight modi cation of previous work). The principal investigator must demonstrate successful outcomes and highlight significant achievements from the earlier award.

Note: Postdoctoral fellows nearing transition to independent investigator status are strongly encouraged to contact the Senior Program Officer directly about their planned proposal, competitiveness for the award, transferring to a new institution, and other issues.

Indirect costs may not be charged against the awards.
Institutional overhead may not be charged against
BWF grants.

Pre-Application Information:

Postdoctoral fellows nearing transition to independent investigator status are strongly encouraged to contact Senior Program Officer Rolly Simpson about their planned proposal, their competitiveness for the award, and other issues.

Candidates who currently hold a Burroughs Wellcome Fund award must contact BWF staff prior to beginning an application.

Award Timeline
Dec. 4, 2018: Application Deadline 4:00 pm (EDT)
April 10, 2019: In-Person Interviews
May 20, 2019: Notice of Award
June 1, 2019: Award Start Date
July 15, 2019: Initial Installment
March 31, 2023: Award End Date

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online here:

Debra Holmes, Sr. Program Assoc.

Rolly Simpson, Sr. Program Officer

Kendra Tucker, Sr. Program Asst.

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

Canada: Alberta   British Columbia   Manitoba   New Brunswick   Newfoundland and Labrador   Northwest Territories   Nova Scotia   Nunavut   Ontario   Prince Edward Island   Quebec   Saskatchewan   Yukon