CCTS Pilot Grant Program


Pilot studies are essential for enhancing the rigor of clinical translational research, improving internal and external study validity, encouraging novel research directions and collaborations, and helping prevent poorly executed or futile studies. Moreover, pilot funding can also drive innovation through a strong emphasis on novel collaborations.

Hands in a huddle

The CCTS Pilot Grant Program serves a vital function in advancing translational research by funding a combination of broad translational and multidisciplinary projects and targeted priority areas as identified by the CTSA Program, such as pediatric research, community based research, health information technology, focused drug discovery, and population health. 

    Through the Pilot Grant Program, the CCTS seeks to promote internal and external collaborations and innovation by supporting projects that bridge disciplines across the translational spectrum and create thematic teams of researchers, positioning them for large-scale and multi-site collaborative studies.

     

    UIC investigators currently supported by CCTS Pilot Grants


    AY 2018-2019 Pilot Grants: Initial Call for Applications

    The Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) announces the availability of pilot grant funding for Academic Year 2018-2019.

    Overview

    The goals of the CCTS Pilot Grant Program are: 

    • to foster outstanding new clinical and translational research at UIC by supporting the development of preliminary data that can be used to launch new NIH or other externally-funded research proposals;
    • to encourage interdisciplinary teams of investigators that spans across Colleges and campus to develop collaborations or new research avenues;
    • to promote interactions between basic and clinical scientists; and
    • to support research collaborations with community partners and organizations.

    This program focuses on clinical and translational research, and as such, all applications must involve human subjects, facilitate human subject investigations, establish infrastructure related to human subject investigation, or concern disease mechanisms with clear, near term implications for therapeutics or prevention. Pilot funding aims to support several aspects of the collaboration that will lead to a successful, extramurally funded research programs. 

    Aspects include but are not limited to:

    • proof of principle studies for new methodologies;
    • feasibility studies for patient recruitment;
    • measurement validation studies; 
    • pilot intervention studies to inform sample size and power estimation; 
    • establishment of collaborative community partnerships;
    • development of new technologies to address a clinical research problem;
    • improvements in biomedical informatics architecture and/or delivery of services,
    • new methods for structuring or analyzing data sets; and
    • stimulating child clinical research.

    Note: Pilot funds cannot be used for clinical trials.

    Priority Areas

    Although applications are welcome in the broad domains of clinical translational research, we are especially interested in applications covering the following priority areas for Fall 2018 funding:

    • Innovative Implementation Science. Implementation methods promote the uptake of research findings into routine healthcare in clinical or policy contexts. This may include
      • Rigorous experimental or quasi-experimental design evaluating an innovative implementation process/intervention or a qualitative study examining different aspects of implementation contexts that contribute to effectiveness of treatments/interventions
      • Hybrid design evaluating both effectiveness and implementation methods
    • Projects linking patient data to Chicago Health Atlas data
    • Projects that tie into Healthy Chicago 2.0 goals
    • Studies on methods to improve the clinical translational research process
    • Projects grounded in bidirectional community-based participation
    • Child health research
    • Studies that address health equity

    Application Process

    Pilot grants can be up to 2 years in duration ($30,000 each year, with second year funding contingent upon progress made during Year 1) and focus specifically on activities needed to prepare competitive NIH grant proposals.

    Grant Application Process:

    • Phase 1)  Letter of intent with proposal abstract.  The review committee will review and score these; a selected group will then be invited to submit for Phase 2.
    • Phase 2)  Full Application to be submitted only by those invited from Phase 1.  

    Deadlines for the AY 18-19 pilot grant program:

    • Letters of Intent (REQUIRED): 12 noon, Friday, June 1, 2018
    • Invitations for full application: Anticipated July 2, 2018
    • Complete pilot grant application: 12 noon, Friday, September 7, 2018 (EXTENDED)
    • Award decisions: October 16, 2018
    • Funding Start Date: November 16, 2018

    Letter of Intent Form
    Letter of Intent Guidelines