amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research

Request for Proposals: Investment Grants — Exploring HIV persistence and eradication

AVAILABLE SUPPORT
amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is pleased to announce the availability of funding to support research by scientists outside the field of HIV that explores the potential for HIV eradication.

Total Cost Maximum: $1,000,000
Performance Period: 4 years (January 1, 2016–December 31, 2019)
Submission Deadline: 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time, August 13, 2015
Request instructions, forms, and submission log-in no later than 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time, August 10, 2015

BACKGROUND
amfAR has established a new funding mechanism, known as Investment Grants, to bring scientists outside the field of HIV/SIV to lend their experience and vision to curing HIV. Investment Grants are conducted over a four-year funding period with up to $1,000,000 in total funding from amfAR (including up to 20% indirect costs) and should include collaboration with a scientist who has a record of publications in the HIV field. Priority will be given to projects with the potential to improve upon current HIV cure strategies or identify undescribed challenges.

Topics that will not be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • Socio-behavioral science
  • Prevention of HIV infection

Doctoral-level researchers from any field outside of HIV are eligible to apply. For example, applications are expected from the following research specialties:

  • Oncology
  • Neuroscience
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Genetic engineering      
  • Stem cell
  • Metagenomics
  • Biological engineering and materials science

All of the following must be incorporated into Investment Grant proposals:

  • Collaboration with an established HIV cure research scientist
  • The application of techniques, treatments, molecular tools, or approaches that have shown sufficient success in improving disease outcomes in other fields
  • In vivo studies involving nonhuman primates or other appropriate animal models and a clinical (in vivo or ex vivo) component

Applicants are especially encouraged to design research studies in which Investment Grant funding will generate findings that advance current HIV cure efforts.

SPECIAL NOTES
The application process has two steps: Letter of Intent (LOI) and full application. Submission of an LOI is not a guarantee of eligibility to submit a full application. The pre-application process is highly competitive. Only a limited number of investigators submitting an LOI will be invited to submit a full application.

Applicants may submit inquiries to amfAR (grants@amfar.org) regarding the development of research plans to ensure that such plans fit within the intended scope of this RFP. No phone calls will be accepted. Responses to all inquiries received will be posted here as Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). The FAQs will be periodically updated so please check them before e-mailing an inquiry.

Eligibility
Principal investigator:

  • Must hold a doctoral-level degree
  • Must hold a faculty-level position
  • Must have verifiable competencies outside the field of HIV. Competencies will be assessed by reviewers and may include: publication record and history of research funding.
  • Must collaborate with an HIV cure research scientist
  • The principal investigator will be expected to coordinate the development, implementation, and analysis of the collaboration as a whole and be responsible for overall financial management and the preparation and submission of required reports.

Experienced HIV Scientist

  • Must hold a doctoral-level degree
  • Must hold a faculty-level position
  • Verifiable expertise in HIV cure research could be demonstrated by a publication record (at least three first author publications or one last author publication) or other contributions to the field, and will be assessed by reviewers.

Institutions:  Applications are accepted from nonprofit research institutions worldwide; applications are not accepted from individuals or for-profit entities. However, research teams may include members from, and budgets may include subcontracts or subawards to, for-profit entities.

Submission Requirements and Deadlines
Letters of Intent and applications are to be submitted via an online portal. amfAR will provide usernames and passwords to applicants. To obtain these credentials, CLICK HERE to download the request form. Complete the form and email it to grantapps@amfar.org.

Each interested applicant must request their own log-in credentials.

You must request log-in credentials no later than 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time on August 10, 2015.

LOI submission deadline: August 13, 2015, 3:00 p.m. Eastern Time

Hard copy of signed face page: August 25, 2015

Other Important Dates:  

Applications invited:
September 24, 2015 (tentative)

E-mailed application submissions due:
October 29, 2015 (tentative)

Funding decisions announced:
Late December 2015 (tentative)

Future requests for proposals:
Click here to sign up for e-mailed grant opportunity announcements.