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  • Email if you are interested in an opportunity not listed below or have questions regarding the LSO submission process.


Active Internal Calls for Limited Submission Nominations 

Internal review process required to choose institutional nominees

Limited Submission Eligibility Guidelines

The following tags serve as a guide for submission instructions.

 Vanderbilt (VU + VUMC):  

  • VU and VUMC submit collaboratively to this LSO. ALL investigators should follow the guidelines posted on this site.


  • VU and VUMC submit separately to this LSO. VUMC investigators should follow the guidelines posted on this site. VU investigators should apply through InfoReady and address any questions to


  • High-profile or prestigious awards of particular interest to Vanderbilt investigators

2020 SURA Distinguished Scientist Award

Applications due September 9


Vanderbilt (VU + VUMC): This is a joint competition for VU and VUMC investigators. All investigators should follow these instructions.


Vanderbilt University may submit 1 nomination to the Southeastern Universities Research Association's Distinguished Scientist Award competition.

This award is presented to research scientists from a SURA member institution (Vanderbilt University is a standing member) whose extraordinary work fulfills the SURA mission to “advance collaborative research and strengthen the scientific capabilities of its members and the nation.” The award comes with a $5,000 cash honorarium.

While all SURA member institution scientists in any program and field of research will be considered, preference will be given to scientists:

  1. whose research program brings exceptional recognition to work being performed at a SURA member institution;
  2. whose work advances the SURA mission of promoting collaborative research;
  3. whose recognition will reflect the broad diversity — in terms of racial, ethnic, gender, discipline, and institutional representation — within SURA member institutions.

See the program page for a list of previous recipients and to find more information on the opportunity.

Internal Review Process:

Both VU and VUMC faculty should apply via:

Submit the following via the InfoReady link by 5 p.m. on September 9, 2019:  

  • Letter of support from Department Chair/ Center Director 
    • Letter should include discussion of your qualifications and achievements as a distinguished scientist
  • CV or NIH Biosketch

Any questions about this opportunity or the LSO process may be directed to

2020 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists – Life Sciences Category

Applications due September 18

Vanderbilt (VU + VUMC): This is a joint competition for VU and VUMC investigators. All investigators should follow these instructions.


We anticipate the opportunity to nominate one candidate for the FY 2020 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists in the Life Sciences award category. The Blavatnik awards honor exceptional young scientists by celebrating their extraordinary achievements, recognizing their inspiring promise, and accelerating their innovations. Awardees will receive $250,000 in unrestricted funds. 

Each nominee and their body of work will be evaluated based on the quality of their research, the impact on their respective field, the novelty of their ideas and methods, and the potential they show for future contributions to science.

Eligibility Criteria:

The nominee must:

  • Have been born in or after 1978
  • Hold a doctorate level degree (PhD, DPhil, MD, DDS, DVM, etc.)
  • Currently hold a faculty position at an invited institution in the US
  • Currently conduct research as a principal investigator in the award category

Internal Review Process:

Anyone interested in being considered as Vanderbilt’s nominee for the Life Sciences award category must submit the following (in PDF format) to by 5 p.m. on September 18, 2019:

  1. Brief (2 page maximum) description of your research. Here are some recommended guidelines (See guidelines):
    • Summarize up to five of your most significant scientific contributions and research accomplishments.
    • Key results, their impact on your field of study, and your specific role in the described work should be included.
    • Information about your positions, awards, and service activities should be excluded.
    • One figure illustrating the most significant results is allowed.
  2. Letter of support from department chair/center director
  3. NIH Biosketch or Brief CV (5 page max)

Submissions should reference the program name in the subject line of the email.

Please note:

  • The FY 2020 competition is anticipated, but the solicitation has not been released yet. Please refer to the FY 2019 solicitation until the new solicitation is posted. Note that the birth year cut-off is anticipated to change to 1978.
  • Faculty interested in the Chemistry or Physical Science & Engineering award categories should email for further instruction.

2020 Moore Inventor Fellows


Applications due September 19


Vanderbilt (VU + VUMC): This is a joint competition for VU and VUMC investigators. All investigators should follow these instructions.


Vanderbilt (VU + VUMC combined) anticipates the opportunity to nominate up to 2 candidates for the Moore Inventor Fellows competition. The Moore Foundation aims to support inventions at an early stage that could lead to proof-of-concept work or advance an existing prototype that tackles an importation problem in the areas of scientific research, environmental conservation, or patient care. Each fellow will receive a total of $825,000 over three years.



  • Must be within 10 years of receiving advanced terminal degree (M.S., Ph.D., or M.D.)
  • Must be faculty, research scientists, postdocs, or other full-time staff.
  • May come from a broad array of disciplines, including, but not limited, to environmental science and conservation, oceanography, biology, engineering, physics, chemistry, materials science, neurosciences, public health and gerontology.

Inventors will be evaluated by their demonstrated creative potential and technical ability for the proposed line of work.  Inventions will be evaluated based on their importance in the area of interest, the need for funding to achieve rapid success, and the plausibility of achieving stated impact. See the list of 2018 recipients


Internal Review Process:

Anyone interested in being considered as one of Vanderbilt’s nominees must submit the following (in PDF format) to by 5 p.m. on September 19, 2019:  

  1. Statement of invention (no more than two pages, including citations; single-spaced, 12-point font and one-inch margins). The first paragraph should describe clearly and without jargon the invention, the problem it seeks to address, and its potential impact. The statement of invention should also include the following information: 
    1. Description of invention 
    2. Importance in the area of science, environmental conservation, or patient care and experience 
    3. Stage of invention 
    4. Current funding 
    5. Feasibility 
    6. Approach for measuring progress during the grant term 
  2. Budget narrative that outlines how grant funds will be used (1 page)
  3. Brief CV (5 page max) or NIH Biosketch
  4. Statement from Department Chair or Dean to assure that the nominee has at least 25 percent of their time to devote to their invention and $50,000 in annual direct support from the institution (total of $150,000 direct support over the project period).

 Submissions should reference the program name in the subject line of the email.  Please contact us at if you have any questions about the program, foundation, or internal review process.

Active Calls for NON-Limited External Opportunities 

Internal review process NOT required- Submit directly to Sponsor


Blood Cancer Discoveries Grant Program- The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research (MFCR), The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), and The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group (PAFG)

Letters of intent due September 3


The Mark Foundation for Cancer Research (MFCR), The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), and The Paul G. Allen Frontiers Group (PAFG) are proud to announce the Blood Cancer Discoveries Grant Program, a new research award program designed to encourage basic research, technological innovation, and informatics pipeline development that can lead to an understanding of blood cancer disease mechanisms, the development of improved methods for detecting and monitoring cancer progression, and the identification of novel therapeutic targets.


MFCR, LLS and PAFG are sponsoring and issuing this Request for Applications (RFA) from independent academic investigators for support of foundational, early stage research that can lead to advances in the treatment and cure of blood cancers. MFCR, LLS and PAFG recognize the need for a dedicated mechanism to encourage established investigators to explore the biology of blood cancer and support proof-of-concept studies that could initiate completely novel approaches to treatment.


Awards provide up to $750,000 over a 3-year project period.

Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI)- Winter 2020 Pilot Award

Applications due September 13

The goal of the Pilot Award is to provide early support for exploratory ideas, particularly those with novel hypotheses. Appropriate projects for this mechanism include those considered higher risk but with the potential for transformative results. 

In particular, we encourage applications that propose research to link genetic or other ASD risk factors to molecular, cellular, circuit or behavioral mechanisms of ASD. Please read more about SFARI’s scientific perspectives here. We also strongly advise applicants to familiarize themselves with the current projects and other resources that SFARI supports and to think about how their proposals might complement existing efforts.

The total budget of a Pilot Award is $300,000 or less, including 20% indirect costs, over a period of up to two (2) years. We encourage investigators to take advantage of the flexibility in budget and duration, tailoring the scope of the award as appropriate for their specific aims. For projects that propose two years of research, progress will be critically evaluated at the end of year one before support for the remaining year will be approved. When provided with a compelling justification, we are willing to consider larger budgets for the Pilot Award. 

Canada's 2019-2020 Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships Competition

Applications due September 18

The Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship is Canada’s most prestigious and highest valued award for postdoctoral researchers today. The Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program is designed to support world-class postdoctoral researchers. The fellowship provides $70,000 per year for two years. The program is open to both Canadian and international researchers who have recently completed a PhD, PhD- equivalent, or health professional degree. Applications must be completed in full collaboration with the proposed host institution. 

DOD Psychological Health/Traumatic Brain Injury Research Program- Prevention Research to Reduce Sexual Assault and/or Understand Adjustment Disorders (PSAAD) Award

Letters of Intent due September 19

The PSAAD award is intended to support research focused on (1) development or adaptation of prevention efforts to reduce the occurrence of sexual assault and/or harassment and/or (2) understanding the diagnosis, assessment, and screening of adjustment disorders as a consequence of sexual assault and/or stressors that precipitate adjustment disorders. All applications must address at least one of the PSAAD IIFRA Focus Areas and be of clear scientific merit with direct relevance to military and public health.

Research involving human subjects is permitted; however, this award may not be used to conduct clinical trials. Preclinical research using animals is not permitted.This funding opportunity is not focused on Veterans.

Submission of a Letter of Intent is required. Maximum funding of $750K for direct costs (includes direct and indirect costs). Maximum period of performance is 3 years.

NIH Director’s Transformative Research Awards (R01 Clinical Trial Optional)

Applications due September 21

This program supports collaborative investigative teams or individual scientists who propose unusually innovative research projects, which, if successful, would have a major impact in a broad area of relevance to the NIH.

To be considered transformative, projects must have the potential to create or overturn fundamental scientific paradigms through novel approaches, transform the way research is conducted through the development of novel tools or technologies, or lead to major improvements in health through the development of highly innovative therapies, diagnostic tools, or preventive strategies. Consistent with this focus, Transformative Research Award applications should reflect ideas substantially different from mainstream concepts.

Cancer Research Institute Irvington Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

Applications due October 1

The CRI Irvington Postdoctoral Fellowship Program supports qualified young scientists at leading universities and research centers around the world who wish to receive training in fundamental immunology or cancer immunology. The Institute seeks hypothesis-driven, mechanistic studies in both immunology and tumor immunology. The applicant and sponsor should make every effort to demonstrate the potential of the proposed studies to directly impact our understanding of the immune system’s role in cancer.

Newly awarded fellowships provide a stipend of $55,000 for the first year, $57,000 for the second year, and $59,000 for the third year. In addition, an allowance of $1,500 per year is allotted to the host institution for use at the sponsor’s discretion to help pay for the fellow’s research supplies, travel to scientific meetings, and/or health insurance.

Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Awards for Medical Scientists (CAMS)

Applications due October 1

CAMS is a highly competitive program that provides $700,000 in support over five years for physician scientists (M.D., D.O., D.V.M., D.D.S.), who are committed to an academic career, to bridge postdoctoral/fellowship training and the early years of faculty service.

Proposals must be in the area of basic biomedical, disease-oriented, or translational research. Proposals in health services research or involving large-scale clinical trials are not eligible. BWF anticipates making up to 14 awards including up to two awards to clinically trained psychiatrists who focus their research at the interface between psychiatry and neuroscience.

Note: CAMS has moved from an institutional nomination to a self-nomination process. There is no longer a limit on the number of applicants from any institution.

American Lung Association Research Grants- Multiple Award Types

Letters of intent due October 3. Not all award types require an LOI- refer to program specific instructions and due dates.

Through the lens of scientific innovation, pioneering new ideas, the American Lung Association is championing the next generation of brilliant scientists to independence and beyond.

Award Types:

•  Lung Cancer Discovery Award: $100,000 per year for up to two years. Letters of Intent (LOI) are due October 3, 2019.
•  Allergic Respiratory Diseases Award: $75,000 per year for up to two years.
•  Innovation Award: $75,000 per year for up to two years.
•  Catalyst Award: $50,000 per year for up to two years.
•  Public Policy Research Award: $50,000 per year for up to two years.
•  Dalsemer Award: $50,000 per year for up to two years.
•  Lung Cancer Research Award: $40,000 per year for up to two years.

Timeline of Grant Process:

•  August 5, 2019: Applicants are invited to submit grant applications
•  October 3, 2019: Lung Cancer Discovery Award Letters of Intent due
•  December 2, 2019: Lung Cancer Discovery Award LOI outcome notifications sent
•  December 12, 2019 (11:59 PM ET): Applications Due
•  January 23, 2020: Lung Cancer Discovery Award proposals due (invitation only)
•  June 2020: Outcome notifications emailed to applicants

American Heart Association 2020 Career Development Award

Applications due October 15

Statement of Purpose: Supports highly promising healthcare and academic professionals, in the early years of one’s first professional appointment, to explore innovative questions or pilot studies that will provide preliminary data and training necessary to assure the applicant’s future success as a research scientist. The award will develop the research skills to support and greatly enhance the awardee’s chances to obtain and retain a high-quality career position.

Science Focus: The AHA funds basic, clinical, behavioral, translational and population research, bioengineering/biotechnology and public health problems broadly related to fulfilling our mission to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives..

Disciplines: AHA awards are open to the array of academic and health professionals. This includes but is not limited to all academic disciplines (biology, chemistry, mathematics, technology, physics, etc.) and all health-related professions (physicians, nurses, advanced practice nurses, pharmacists, dentists, physical and occupational therapists, statisticians, nutritionists, behavioral scientists, engineers, etc.). Clinical, translational, population, behavioral, and basic scientists are encouraged to apply AHA strongly encourages applications by women, underrepresented minorities in the sciences, and those who have experienced diverse and non-traditional career trajectories.

Eligibility: At the time of application, the applicant must hold an M.D., Ph.D., D.O., D.V.M., D.D.S., or equivalent post-baccalaureate doctoral degree.

  • Postdoctoral fellows are eligible to apply and must have attained faculty appointment by the time of award activation.
  • The AHA will permit a Career Development Awardee to concurrently hold an NIH K award. if there is no budgetary overlap. NIH K99/R00 awardees may apply if they will be in the R00 stage of the award at time of AHA Career Development Award activation.

At the time of award activation:

  • An awardee must hold a faculty/staff position up to and including the rank of assistant professor (or equivalent).
  • No more than five years may have elapsed since the first faculty/staff appointment (after receipt of doctoral degree) at the assistant professor level or equivalent (including, but not limited to, instructor, research assistant professor, research scientist, staff scientist, etc.).
  • While no minimum percent effort is required, the applicant must demonstrate that adequate time will be devoted to ensuring successful completion of the project.

Human Vaccines Project- 2020 Michelson Prize

Pre-applications due October 31

The Human Vaccines Project Michelson Prize is a scientific award of $150,000 given to young investigators who are applying disruptive concepts and inventive processes to advance human immunology, vaccine discovery, and immunotherapy research across major global diseases. Michelson Prizes are open to early-career researchers under 35 at the time of application.

The 2020 Michelson Prize will focus on advances in human immunology to accelerate the development of more effective vaccines and immunotherapies. They seek high-impact and highly innovative research that has the potential to be applied across many diseases and to significantly expand our understanding of the human immune system.

Pre-applications for the 2020 Michelson Prizes will be accepted from September 9 – October 31, 2019. There is no institutional application process required. Learn more on the Michelson Prize site.

BrightFocus Foundation Alzheimer's Disease Research Grant


Applications due November 4


BrightFocus Foundation has issued an RFP for grant funding in Alzheimer's Disease Research with a deadline of November 4, 2019.


BrightFocus provides research funds for U.S. domestic as well as international researchers pursuing pioneering research leading to greater understanding, prevention, and treatment of Alzheimer's disease.


Typically these awards are made to early stage investigators, or to more established investigators who are proposing particularly innovative research.


Full proposal deadline: 4 November 2019, 5:00 PM EST


Amount: $100,000 per year


Award durations: Standard Awards can be up to 3 years. Fellowship Awards can be up to 2 years.


Eligibility: All scientists working at non-profit and government laboratories are eligible to apply for a Standard Award. Fellowships are limited to researchers within 5 years of doctoral degree conferral (or end of residency).


The full announcement may be viewed at

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation Litwin IBD Pioneers Award

Letters of Intent due November 5

The Award supports innovative clinical and translational research projects with the potential to impact the treatment of IBD patients in the near future. The program encourages novel research into the diagnosis, identification of clinically relevant subsets, treatments, and cures for inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) and funds innovative pilot research so that scientists can test their initial ideas and generate preliminary data.

Litwin IBD Pioneers supports researchers who are exploring all possible opportunities for diagnostic and therapeutic improvements, including novel, out-of-the-box ideas, and funds innovative and pioneering ideas that have a clinically relevant focus. Additionally, the program is open to investigators from other disciplines new to the IBD field, as well as countries outside the United States.

There is no fixed upper or lower limit of funding, but awards are generally not funded above $130,000, including 10% indirect costs, for clinical trials; and above $110,000, including 10% indirect costs, for lab-based studies.

Infectious Diseases Society of America Foundation- Alzheimer's Research Grant

Applications due November 30

Through partnership with Alzheimer’s Quest, Inc., The Benter Foundation, and the IDSA Foundation, ID investigators are called to submit their stellar research proposal addressing to identify a potential microbial link to Alzheimer’s disease. All application submissions must be narrowly focused on elucidating the possible roles of infectious agents in the causation of Alzheimer’s disease. The awards will support innovative research including basic, clinical, and/or non-traditional approaches.

  • To obtain evidence that an infectious agent or microbial community is correlated to Alzheimer’s disease.
  • To promote novel research in the field of microbial triggers for Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Both members and non-members of IDSA are encouraged to apply. This includes established investigators, academic and health professionals in all disciplines and health-related professions.
  • PhD and MDs are welcome to apply.
  • Interdisciplinary research is encouraged, including collaborations between experts in Alzheimer’s research and infectious diseases.
  • Clinical and basic scientists are encouraged to apply.
  • International applications are welcome.

Damon Runyon Physician-Scientist Training Award

Applications due December 2

In an effort to confront the crisis arising from a growing dearth of physician-scientists, Damon Runyon wishes to encourage more physicians to pursue research careers. To do so, the Foundation established a program designed to recruit outstanding U.S. Specialty Board eligible physicians into cancer research careers by providing them with the opportunity for a protected research training experience under the mentorship of a highly qualified and gifted mentor after they have completed all of their clinical training. The goals are a) to transform these individuals into the highest quality physician-scientists, capable of conducting research that has the potential to transform the diagnosis, treatment and/or prevention of cancer and b) to eliminate the financial disincentive to entering this career path.

This award will provide a funding source that will enable these individuals to pursue research intensively (at least 80% effort) for up to four years, while, if they wish to maintain their clinical skills, continuing to be clinically active (no more than 20% effort). With the recognition that very few other funding sources (if any) exist to support these developing physician-scientists, this award is structured to provide recipients with significant salary support and necessary research expenses, with the expectation that their institutions will provide an environment and additional support (such as benefits and institutional overhead) to ensure their success. In addition, the Foundation will retire up to $100,000 of any medical school debt still owed by an award recipient.

Eligibility Notes: 

  • Only one Physician-Scientist Training Award application will be accepted from a Mentor per review session; there is no limit, however, to the number of applications from an institution.
  • No more than two awardees will be funded to work with the same Mentor at any given time.
  • Eligible candidates may apply up to two times.