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Propose a CARD Research Challenge

Researchers in a conference room listening to alzheimers proposal opportunities.

Currently, this opportunity is only available to staff (FTEs, contractors, and visiting fellows) at the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). The process will open to the rest of NIH in 2022.

The AD/ADRD research field is a thriving and productive one. CARD aims to complement this work and fill critical gaps and needs in the research pipeline with an emphasis on projects that are not easily supported by traditional extramural funding mechanisms. Formed as part of NIH's Intramural Research Program (IRP), CARD is committed to working closely with NIH staff to develop critical programs of research and infrastructure development in the AD/ADRD space.

Here we announce the first step in developing this component of CARD’s work. We are soliciting research challenges from NIA and NINDS staff. Should you choose to highlight a problem or challenge, the only commitment we ask is a willingness to work with us as we scope out the problem and collaboratively craft solutions.

What types of Research Challenges are of interest to CARD?

Projects should focus on extant challenges in the AD/ADRD field, including Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy body dementia, frontotemporal dementia, and vascular dementia. Projects must fit CARD’s mission and programmatic priorities:

  • Understanding molecular pathogenesis anchored in genetics
  • Investigating disease subtyping, prediction, and progression
  • De-risking of AD/ADRD therapeutic targets to facilitate their uptake by industry
  • Precision therapeutic development and application 

The challenges we take on must also fit with our key structural priorities:

  • Prioritizing diversity in research and researchers
  • Democratization of data
  • Ensuring transparency and reproducibility
  • Collaboration and cooperation
  • Foundational resource generation

What types of Research Challenges are not of interest to CARD?

Proposals that simply aim to extend a scientist's own work are unlikely to be considered. Projects that we’ve prioritized, for example, have focused on creating resources and solutions for the field. We are not seeking fully mature proposals. We are interested in starting with the underlying problems and challenges, and then working collaboratively to devise solutions.

What happens after I submit a Research Challenge to CARD?

We have created a very simple process for submitting challenges. Should you choose to propose a challenge, you will be asked to work with us to scope out the problem and collaboratively craft solutions. This is designed to initially be a "light lift" but as we work together through the process, involvement and commitment increase. As you consider submitting a challenge, please think carefully about the general principles we’ve laid out here including mission fit, programmatic fit, and how it leverages the unique nature of the IRP. We will notify you via email within three weeks of submission if we would like to explore your idea.

How can I submit a Research Challenge to CARD?

CARD is accepting proposals on a rolling basis. At this time, we are only accepting Research Challenge submissions from the staff at NIA or NINDS. We will begin accepting proposals from NIH Institutes and Centers in 2022.

To propose a challenge, please submit this form.

Questions?

Please email NIAcardcontact@nih.gov with questions regarding the process.