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Submission guidelines

Pre-submission Guidelines for INNOVATION and STATEWIDE Pilots:

Submission of the Statement of Intent (SOI) form is required. Innovation and Statewide OIs are due by 5:0pm EST on November 23, 2021. The OIs will be reviewed by CC Senior Leadership or designated reviewers and select individuals will be invited to submit a full application by November 23. No feedback will be provided on the OIs.

Pre-submission Guidelines for Team Sciences and CI Catalyst Award:

A SOI must be submitted for the Team Science award. OIs will be reviewed by the CC Executive Committee within a month of receipt. NCI Catalyst applications do not require an SOI and can be submitted directly and award notifications will be made within a month.


  • Use Arial 11pt. font for text and half inch margins.

Required Application Components:

  1. Massey Cancer Center Cover Sheet
  2. Project Summary/Abstract (limit to 30 lines)
  3. Budget Form
    • Facilities and Administrative (F&A)/Indirect Costs: These are not allowed.
  4. NIH Biosketch for Principal Investigator(s) and all key personnel
  5. Letter(s) of Support
    • Innovation: May include letters from supporting shared resources, mentors, collaborators, co-investors, etc. as appropriate for the application
    • Team Science: Must include letter from Internal Advisory Board as well as letters from supporting shared resources, collaborators, co-investors, etc. as appropriate for the application
    • Statewide Collaboration: Must include letter from partnering institution delineating the match commitment as well as letters from supporting shared resources, mentors,collaborators, co-investors, etc. as appropriate for the application
    • Catalyst Award: Requires a letter from the PI outlining the strategies to address the prior NCI critique. In addition, the NCI Summary Statement must be included along with the Research Strategy section of the original application. No other materials required for this submission.
  6. Budget Pages (PHS 398 Form Page 4 and 5)
    • A detailed budget justification is required (See allowable/unallowable expenses below)
    • Applications involving a collaboration with a partner institution must complete budgets from each institution and they must be comparable.
    • For Team Science applications, please complete Form Pages 4 and 5 for each project/core.
  7. Specific Aims and Research Strategy
    • Specific Aims (1-page maximum)
      • State concisely the goals of the proposed research and summarize the expected outcome(s), including the impact that results from the proposed research will exert on the research field(s) involved. List succinctly the specific objectives of the research proposed, e.g., to test a stated hypothesis, create a novel design, solve a specific problem, challenge an existing paradigm or clinical practice, address a critical barrier to progress in the field, or develop new technology.
    • Research Strategy
      • Innovation: 6 pages maximum
      • Statewide Collaboration: 12 pages maximum
      • Team Science:
        • 3-page overview maximum, 6 pages maximum per project for which funding is requested and 3 pages maximum per core for which funding is requested.
  8. Start each section with the appropriate section heading – Significance, Innovation, Approach. Cite published experimental details in the Research Strategy section and provide the full reference in the Bibliography and References Cited section.

    1. Significance
      • Explain the importance of the problem or critical barrier to progress in the field that the proposed project addresses.
      • Explain how the proposed project will improve scientific knowledge,technical capability, and/or clinical practice in one or more broad fields.
      • Describe how the concepts, methods, technologies, treatments, services,or preventative interventions
    2. Innovation
      • Explain how the application challenges and seeks to shift current research or clinical practice paradigms.
      • Describe any novel theoretical concepts, approaches or methodologies,instrumentation or interventions to be developed or used, and any advantage over existing methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions.
      • Explain any refinements, improvements, or new applications of theoretical concepts, approaches/methodologies, instrumentation, or interventions.
    3. Approach
      • Describe the overall strategy, methodology, and analyses to be used to accomplish the specific aims of the project. Include how the data will be collected, analyzed, and interpreted.
      • Discuss potential problems, alternative strategies, and benchmarks for success anticipated to achieve the aims.
      • If the project is in the early stages of development, describe any strategy to establish feasibility, and address the management of any high-risk aspects of the proposed work.
      • All applicants are strongly encouraged to seek the support of the MCC Biostatistics Shared Resource in the design and statistics methods to be employed. Please indicate who will be providing biostatistical support.If assistance is needed from the MCC Biostatistics Shared Resource,please contact Dr. Roy Sabo at as soon as possible.
  9. Bibliography and References Cited
  10. Multi-PI Leadership Plan (if applicable; 1-page maximum)
    • For applications designating multiple PIs, a leadership plan is required. The rationale for choosing a multiple PI approach should be described, including the added benefit of this approach. The governance and organizational structure of the leadership team and the research project should be described, including communication plans, process for making decisions on scientific direction, and procedures for resolving conflicts. Each PI must bring key scientific knowledge and responsibilities. The roles and administrative, technical, and scientific responsibilities for the project or program should be delineated for the PIs, including responsibilities for human or live vertebrate animal subject studies as appropriate.
  11. Plans for Subsequent Funding (1-page maximum)
    • Discuss how the findings from your pilot will be used to write a proposal for subsequent NCI/NIH funding. In this regard, applicants should list potential aims for a NIH proposal. This section is an important criterion for award selection.
    • Team Science applications must include a detailed timeline for submission and meeting Year 2 contingencies outlined above:
      • Pre-application consultation meeting with the NCI/NIH;
      • Submission of an External Advisory Board report; and
      • Presentation on progress with MCC’s Senior Leadership.
  12. MCC Shared Resource Utilization (1-page maximum)
  13. Compliance Document(s)
    • Include all applicable compliance approvals need on the cover sheet (e.g., animal, IRB). Funds will not be allocated and no aspect of the project can begin (including non-human subject research components) without documentation of required approvals.

Budget Guidelines:

Expenditures Allowed:

  • Salary support for research staff
  • Research supplies
  • Per diem charges for patients if part of a clinical study, not reimbursable by standard payment terms
  • Technical assistance
  • Graduate student/postdoctoral stipends if relevant to the project with a detailed justification
  • Domestic/foreign travel necessary to carry out proposed project based on institutional travel policies
  • Computational services
  • Other expenses such as laboratory and shared resource fees, pathology, imaging, etc.
  • Consultant costs
  • Equipment/technology with the intent to design, test, or facilitate a new device and non-office equipment necessary to carry out the proposed project. Requests over $5,000 must include a detailed justification.
  • Publications costs not to exceed $2,000 across the total project period
  • EAB expense for Team Science Award

Expenditures NOT Allowed:

  • PI or other faculty salary expenses
  • Secretarial/administrative personnel salary support
  • Office equipment and supplies
  • Computer and equipment maintenance fees
  • Tuition
  • Travel and/or registration/related fees for conferences
  • Travel not essential to carrying out the proposed research
  • Purchasing and binding of periodicals and books
  • Dues and membership fees in scientific societies
  • Faculty recruiting and relocation expenses
  • Administrative or institutional charges for services normally considered overhead (e.g. space rental,utilities, building maintenance)
  • Non-medical or personnel services to patients
  • Sub-contracts to institutions not affiliated with Massey Cancer Center
  • Pre-award costs