FAPESP and California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Call for Proposals

FAPESP AND CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE FOR REGENERATIVE MEDICINE (CIRM) COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH OPPORTUNITY

FUNDING OPPORTUNITY - FAPESP CALL FOR PROPOSALS

This call is published at www.fapesp.br/8406 

The São Paulo Research Foundation - FAPESP announces this Call for Research Proposals and invites researchers associated to Higher Education and Research Organizations in the State of São Paulo, Brazil to submit research proposals under the Scientific Cooperation Agreement between FAPESP and the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), United States of America (USA).

This Call for Proposals is issued in coordination with funding announcements from the CIRM (www.cirm.ca.gov/our-funding/research-rfas/tools-and-technologies-iii)

Applications must be in collaborations either between researchers from State of California, USA and the State of São Paulo, Brazil.

1. Introduction

CIRM’s mission is to support stem cell research towards the development of cures to benefit patients. As the stem cell field moves towards and into clinical trials, multiple technical hurdles remain to be addressed. CIRM’s Tools and Technology initiative intends to support research that can address regenerative medicine’s unique translational bottlenecks. These challenges include limitations in the areas of cell engraftment, preclinical evaluation, cell tracking, and cost efficient production of stem cell therapies. Resolving these bottlenecks will help to realize the promise of regenerative medicine.

FAPESP and CIRM confirm their mutual interest in exploring joint efforts to foster research in the area of regenerative medicine. The interest is motivated by a shared understanding that cure as well as treatment of injuries and chronic diseases can be accomplished by applying new methods from that research.

Both parties are convinced that breakthroughs in the area will only occur if adequate funding and other support is made available to researches and word wide cooperation is facilitated. 

2. Research Themes

CIRM and FAPESP encourage the submission of proposals that are focused on the creation, design and testing of broadly applicable novel tools and technologies and the optimization, improvement, standardization or scale up of existing tools or technologies for addressing translational bottlenecks to stem cell therapies. In particular, CIRM will prioritize programs addressing the following:

  • For indications where large animal modeling is critical, development and testing of
    - technologies or animal strains that enable long‐term xenograft retention of human stem cells in large animal models
    - high purity, therapeutically relevant cell types from pluripotent stem cells of large animal model species to enable same species modeling of efficacy and/or safety of PSC-derived therapies
  • Development and testing of clinically compatible technologies to achieve cell survival, engraftment and integration of human stem cells
  • Methods or reagents/probes to enable the use of clinically compatible imaging modalities for in vivo imaging and tracking of human stem cells at high sensitivity
  • Development of xenobiotic free reagents to improve reproducibility and reduce cost of human stem cell manufacturing processes (ex: extracellular matrices and chemical replacements for growth factors)
  • Methods to expand isolated human HSC and/or generate HSC from human pluripotent stem cells resulting in long term, multilineage engraftment
  • Application of clinically compatible nanotechnologies for human stem cell delivery to target tissues, targeted in vivo cell clearance, for in vivo monitoring of cell function, biodistribution and/or cell fate. 

3. Funding

The applicants shall apply for funding to their respective funding agencies. Researchers from USA must follow the CIRM guidelines and researchers from the State of São Paulo, the FAPESP guidelines out by this document.

FAPESP is prepared to fund the total amount of up to US$700.000 to the selected proposals from the State of São Paulo. CIRM intends to commit up to US$35 million to support up to 20 grants as described at CIRM - Award Information.

4. Eligibility criteria 

4.1. For the applicant PI in the State of São Paulo, the collaborative proposal must be submitted to FAPESP as a Thematic Projects Research Award, following all the established rules and procedures (available at www.fapesp.br/176), except for the described below at item 4.2.

4.1.1 Please note that for Thematic Project Awards there is a qualification phase (“enquadramento”) upon submission.

4.1.2 Researchers who already are PIs in an ongoing Thematic Project must consult FAPESP before initiating the preparation of a joint proposal.

4.1.3 Applicants from the State of São Paulo must satisfy the eligibility criteria of FAPESP available at www.fapesp.br/176#4599 for a Thematic Projects Research Award.

4.1.4 Only the applicants from the State of São Paulo considered eligible by FAPESP will have their proposals analyzed for this joint funding opportunity.

4.2. Under this Call for Proposals:

i) the maximum project duration is 36 months, non-extendable.

ii) no more than 20% of total direct project costs can be used for equipment.

iii) will not be available Honors Doctorate (DD) fellowships.

5. Submission of proposals

The submission process will involve a two-step process in coordination with the application and evaluation process from CIRM. The two steps are: Pre Application and Full Aplication submission.

5.1. Pre Application: in addition to the regular aplicattion procedure at CIRM, the São Paulo PIs must submit a Pre Application, following the described below.

a. Researchers from the State of São Paulo must send a Pre Application, in English, which must include the following documents and information:

i) São Paulo State PI´s CV;

ii) title and summary of the collaborative research project;

iii) name of the US collaborative PI and institution.

b. The Pre Application should be sent to FAPESP until 12:00 pm (Brasília time) January 07, 2014, as one pdf. file to chamada_CIRM@fapesp.br;

c. Pre Applications submitted by any other means will not be accepted.

5.2 Full Applications: Only the PIs from State of São Paulo on joint teams that are invited to submit full applications by CIRM should submit a detailed Full Application to FAPESP (as a Thematic Project).

5.2.1 The full application shall include a Joint Research Project written by 2 (two) applicants, one from the USA and one from the State of São Paulo.

5.2.2 A Joint Research Project (referred to in section 7) written in English including:

i) a clear description of the planned research collaboration (distribution of work and methods of implementation) and responsibilities of both partners;

ii) a description of the added value to be expected from the collaboration;

iii) a joint budget for the project and separate budgets for the partners;

iv) a description of the significance of the project for researcher training and the development of the research environment.

5.2.3 If the proposal includes requests for fellowships, a work plan for each fellowship is mandatory (www.fapesp.br/2615).

6. Review of applications

The Pre Application, submit to FAPESP and CIRM will be analyzed by CIRM and the most promising, competitive and responsive Pre Application will be invited to submit a Full Application for CIRM. The Full Application, submit to CIRM and to FAPESP (item 5.2 above) will be analyze by FAPESP as described below.

By FAPESP:

a) The process of analysis, qualification and selection of the proposals (Full Application) received by FAPESP will follow FAPESP procedures, using peer reviews and analysis by the FAPESP Area and Coordinating Panels. Further information on the review process is available at www.fapesp.br/en/FAPESP_peer_review_20111012.pdf.

b) The proposals will be pre-qualified and analyzed by way of a competitive process, which will evaluate the scientific merit and relevance of the project and the academic excellence of the proposing teams.

c) Proposals non-compliant with the terms of this Call will be considered “not qualified”.

7. Proposals (Full Application) are composed by:

a) A Joint Research Project. This document replaces the “Projeto de Pesquisa” specified in item 8.f of FAPESP’s rules for Thematic Projects Research Grant (www.fapesp.br/176).

7.1. Proposals not received by all parties before the deadline or not in conformity to the specifications herein will not be reviewed.

7.2. Only the proposals selected by FAPESP and CIRM will be funded.

7.3. All proposals must be sent by mail, to FAPESP, to the following address: Rua Pio XI, 1500, Alto da Lapa, CEP 05468-901 – São Paulo/SP, with “ Chamada FAPESP/CIRM - 2014” written on the envelope.

7.4. CIRM proposals must be submitted electronically. Please consult submission conditions specific to CIRM. 

8. Timeline (by FAPESP) 

Event

Deadlines

Call announcement

December 20 2013

Last day of Pre Applications submission

January 7, 2014

Last day of proposal submission (Full Applications)

June 10, 2014

Announcement of the selected proposals

December, 2014

9. Additional information