Pilot Impact Box 2The mission of the CCTS is to address disparities in diseases disproportionately represented within the Deep South as we accelerate discovery to improve human health. Through the CCTS Partner Network Multidisciplinary Pilot Program, we seek to foster collaboration, team science and innovative discovery. 

The CCTS invites letters of intent that address scientific questions consistent with the Center’s mission at any “stage of research along the path from the biological basis of health and disease to interventions that improve the health of individuals and the public” as described in NCATS’ Translational Science Spectrum (https://ncats.nih.gov/translation/spectrum). Proposals to investigate the operational principles underlying each step of the translational process are encouraged.

Special consideration will be given to those projects that bring together investigators across two or more partner institutions. Priority will also be given to applications that address scientific questions of particular importance to the health of our communities, including health disparities and health challenges across the life course, as well as applications that involve community-based participatory research (CBPR), population health investigation or innovative approaches to promote efficiency in participant recruitment to clinical studies.

The CCTS serves a region and a population heavily burdened with cardiometabolic, vascular, and cancer-related diseases. The vision of the CCTS is to ameliorate disparities in these and other conditions that disproportionally affect minority and special populations represented within our region and across the nation. The CCTS Mission defines the concept of ‘health disparities’ more broadly than “vulnerable groups” or “underserved populations”. The Center characterizes such differences in health and health outcomes by considering multiple dimensions, including ancestry (race, ethnicity), biology (genetic admixture), geography (urban, rural), age (young, aged), or socioeconomics (education, income). To be responsive to the CCTS Pilot Program’s RFA, projects should be set in the context of health conditions that disproportionately affect our region based on one or more of these considerations. The study design may, but is not required to, compare two dimensions. A project may also attempt to better understand the biologic mechanism that may influence such differential outcomes.

Posted Date August 1, 2017  
Open Date (Earliest Submission Date) August 1, 2017                                      
Letter of Intent Due Date August 30, 2017, 5pm CT  
Full Application Invitations September 20, 2017  
Full Application Due Date (invitation required) November 10, 2017, 5pm CT  
Scientific Merit Review December - February, 2018  
Advisory Council & NIH Review March, 2018  
Orientation Meeting for Awardees March 30, 2018  
Earliest Start Date April 1, 2018  
Expiration Date September 1, 2017  
*some dates may vary as a result of unanticipated delays 

Eligibility: This program is primarily intended to support full-time faculty who are early investigators (please see NIH definition). Applications will also be accepted from established investigators with a previous history of funding with a justification of eligibility. PIs must be based at any one of the 11 CCTS Partner Institutions.

This program is intended to support investigators with a full-time faculty appointment. Postdocs may be eligible if a faculty appointment at a CCTS Partner institution is on the horizon, with a start date on or before April 1, 2017 – as part of the application, the investigator should include a letter from the Department Chair reflecting such.

More established investigators must comment on how the proposed research represents the first effort to pursue human subjects research. They are also encouraged to apply if the application advances ongoing research to a later stage of translation.

Budget: Applicants may request up to $60,000 Direct Costs, with the CCTS Hub committing up to half. Co-sponsoring funds are expected to match CCTS funds. Awards are limited to 12 months in duration. Applicants are encouraged to identify at least one non-CCTS cosponsor with shared scientific interests. A cosponsor may include a school, a department, a division, a University-wide Interdisciplinary Research Center, etc., or a combination thereof, based at the PI’s home institution.

Two-Phase Application Process

We strongly urge applicants to read the entire Request for Proposal and Application Guidelines before starting the application process. 

(1) Letter of Intent (LOI) Phase: An LOI is required by this mechanism. Please contact CCTS Research Commons (205-934-7442 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

A LOI application form is available only upon request.

Submission. Submit your LOI form as a single PDF to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before the deadline (August 30, 2017, 5pm CT). LOIs will be rated on the NIH 9-point scale. The highest rated proposals will be invited to submit a full proposal.

(2) Full Application Phase: PIs selected to submit a full proposal will be notified in September 2017 and will be provided a Full Application package with further instructions. Applicants submitting Full Proposals will work with expert consultants and peer reviewers to sharpen their science. Applications are due as a single PDF to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before the deadline (November 10, 2017, 5pm CT).

Award announcements are anticipated on April 1, 2018.

Questions? Please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 205-934-7442.

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