Monday, October 6, 2014

If you're not saving the world, don't apply for a Transformative R01

The NIH Transformative R01 funding mechanism is designed to "provide support for collaborative investigative teams or individual scientists who propose transformative research projects, which, if successful, would have a major impact in a broad area of biomedical or behavioral research. To be considered transformative, projects must have the potential to create or overturn fundamental scientific paradigms through the use of novel approaches, to transform the way research is conducted through the development of novel tools or technologies, or to lead to major improvements in health through the development of highly innovative therapies, diagnostic tools, or preventive strategies."  The application does not require preliminary data.  Rather, it requests descriptions of projects that are highly innovative, high-risk/high-reward, and have potential to transform a research area.  Basically to be funded, these projects must be truly ground-breaking. 

Every Fall, it seems I come across a PI or two who are behind on their R01 submission for the Parent R01 deadline of October 5th.  To buy themselves some time, they convince themselves their work is so innovative the proposal should be revamped for the October 10th deadline.  This is a bad idea for a variety of reasons.  First, the Transformative R01 requirements are completely different in terms of formatting and length rules.  Even the biosketches are different.  Second, an idea that has been written up for a Parent R01 is not likely to be as groundbreaking and cutting-edge as the ideas that are typically developed for the Transformative R01 opportunities.  Check out these previously-funded Transformative R01s and decide for yourself.

No comments:

Post a Comment