NIH news roundup for January 2015

Several key announcements were issued by NIH in the last month that bear noting:

NIH announced its fiscal policy for FY 2015 operations, implementing the 2015 Consolidated Appropriations Act signed by President Obama on December 16, 2014. A separate announcement was also issued providing information on statutory provisions in the appropriations act that limit the use of funds on NIH grants, cooperative agreements and contracts, including salary caps.

In an effort to continue to fund a wide-array of biomedical scientists in a limited funding environment, the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS) released new guidelines for awarding R01s and other research grants to investigators who are already well supported. The new rules stipulate that researchers with $400,000 or more in unrestricted research funding may generally hold no more than one NIGMS research grant. One aim of the new guidelines is to address the “funding gap” years often experienced by mid-career researchers.

Of particular note: A notice was issued on January 22, 2015 to remind applicants of NIH requirements for allowable applications. Most importantly, they reminded us of what constitutes a New Application:

“A New Application is an application that has not been previously proposed or received funding. Whether it follows an unsuccessful application or not, a New Application is neither a Resubmission Application nor a Renewal Application, and must comply with the rules for a New Application.” 

That means don’t refer to your previous application, your previous percentile, or your previous scores. New means “new.”