Announcement: The ASRM Research Institute Solicits its First Round of Major Grant Applications

The newly established ASRM Research Institute invites applications from investigators to develop research projects addressing fundamental questions of major clinical significance to reproductive medicine. Preference for funding will be given to projects that attempt to answer timely, basic and clinically relevant questions of potential high impact to the practice of reproductive medicine and which are currently not fundable (either because of applicable existing federal law or because of relatively lower prioritization) by federal funding agencies. Applicants are advised to review the recently published ASRM Research Blueprint identifying the list of research priorities for the Society.

Following review of these stated priorities, the ASRM Research Institute Steering Committee concluded that for this FIRST round of request for applications (RFA), applicants are encouraged to concentrate on research projects involving the areas listed below. The stated examples are not meant to be prescriptive, but point to areas of research that, at the present time appear to have the potential of being most impactful on several priority aspects of the clinical practice of reproductive medicine.

  • Research projects involving human gametes such as ones aiming to understand human egg maturation; determine single sperm variability to evaluate quality and function in clinical IVF; apply what has been learned from animal models to in vitro gametogenesis in the human; evaluate feasibility and safety of gene editing approaches in human gametes.
  • Research projects involving human embryos such as ones attempting to determine single cell (blastomere, trophectoderm, ICM cell) variability (chromosomal, transcriptomic, metabolomic, etc); define in molecular and cell biological terms cell lineages in the early human embryo; develop methodologies for the evaluation of “stressors” and safety of methodologies in the clinical IVF laboratory; investigate the feasibility and safety of gene editing approaches in human embryos.
  • Research projects evaluating outcomes by developing questionnaires and software for the long-term follow-up of children and their parents following fertility treatments. Building on existing databases and registries is strongly encouraged.
  • Research projects on access to fertility care by developing metrics to evaluate the needs for access to fertility care in low resourced setting(s); determine the cost effectiveness and feasibility of easily implementable approaches for the evaluation of fertility status; develop treatment methodologies for cost effective fertility care.

Applicants

should include investigators who possess the knowledge and expertise in conducting research in reproductive medicine. These include reproductive endocrinologists, reproductive biologists, reproductive urologists, reproductive epidemiologists, embryologists, andrologists and any other physicians or scientists with track records in basic, clinical or translational research in reproductive medicine.  Investigators should have a doctorate degree (MD, MD/PhD, PhD, ScD or equivalent) and have sufficient expertise, commitment of effort, organizational structure and operational effectiveness to successfully implement the plan for the proposed research. Applicants should have completed their research and/or clinical training for at least three years prior to submitting the application and should hold an independent position as faculty of a university program (public/state or private), research institute or other non-profit or for-profit organization focusing on research and/or care of patients with reproductive problems. Applications from international entities are acceptable. Applicants need not be ASRM members at the time of the application but will be required to become members prior to the initiation and throughout the duration of funding. Principal investigators responding to this RFA are encouraged to coordinate their submission with others applying to this initiative, if their individual projects are complementary. Even though each submission will be reviewed independently, meritorious applications that score high and appear to be related in scope and complementarity are going to be given preference for funding. Applicants are encouraged to highlight such potential interactions between projects in their applications.

No clinical care costs will be covered by this funding opportunity.

It is required that any research involving human embryos will comply with applicable federal and state laws and will be in line with the ASRM’s guidance document on the ethics of human embryo research. No research will proceed without all relevant Institutional Board(s) and Committee(s) reviews and approval.

Progress Reports

of funded projects will be reviewed annually by the ASRM Research Institute and continued funding will depend on adequate and demonstrated progress and productivity.

Award Budget:

Up to $250,000 per year per funded application including up to 10% covering overhead costs. It is anticipated that up to FOUR meritorious applications will be funded by this initiative.

Award Project Period:

Up to THREE years.

Application:

All applications should be submitted to asrm@asrm.org in ONE PDF file (Arial 11pt font) and should include:

  • Title of the project NOT to exceed 200 characters including blank spaces.
  • Abstract - 350 words describing the research proposal including the potential immediate impact of the anticipated results on the practice of reproductive medicine.
  • Specific Aims of the research proposal – One page maximum.
  • Research Plan – maximum 10 pages including subsections entitled Background and Significance, Innovation and Potential Impact, Research Plan and Timeline. Any Preliminary Results supporting the research proposal can be included in a separate section or can be included under the Research Plan for each relevant specific aim.
  • NIH-style Biosketch AND Current Funding of the Principal Investigator and any other key personnel. Each Biosketch should include a specific description of the role of each investigator in the proposed project and should not exceed FIVE pages (including the current funding).
  • Resources and Environment – ONE page maximum.
  • Budget – ONE page - not to exceed $250,000 per year for up to three years including overhead costs NOT to exceed 10%. Any additional institutional budgetary commitment(s) to the project should be described and included in this page. A signed letter by the relevant institutional officer responsible for this commitment should also be included with the application.
  • Other documents to be included with the application:
    • A signed statement by the PI or other relevant institutional officer that the proposed research is permissible by State law where the performing site(s) are located.
    • A signed statement that any intellectual property generated from the proposed research will be shared and include ASRM.
  • No Appendix is permissible.

Application Due Date: April 26, 2019

Anticipated Start Date of Funding: August 1, 2019.


The ASRM Bulletin is published by ASRM's Office of Public Affairs to inform Society members of important recent developments. Republication or any other use of the contents of the Bulletin without permission is prohibited. To request permission to quote or excerpt material from the Bulletin, contact Sean Tipton at stipton@asrm.org.   

Contact

Eleanor Nicoll
Phone: 202-863-2439 or 240-274-2209 (mobile)
Email: enicoll@asrm.org

Sean Tipton
Phone: 202-863-2494 or 202-421-5112 (mobile)
Email: stipton@asrm.org

FAQs

FAQs

Have questions about IVF and infertility? We have answers.
Find A Clinic

Find A Clinic

National statistics from SART member clinics that reported their data through SART.