Gulf War Illness (GWI) pathobiology, diagnosis, and treatment

Defense Health Program
Department of Defense 
Gulf War Illness Research Program

Anticipated Funding Opportunities for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20)

 

The FY20 Defense Appropriations Act provides funding to the Department of Defense Gulf War Illness Research Program (GWIRP) to support research addressing Gulf War Illness (GWI) pathobiology, diagnosis, and treatment.  As directed by the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs, the Defense Health Agency J9, Research and Development Directorate, manages the Defense Health Program (DHP) Research, Development, Test, and Evaluation (RDT&E) appropriation.  The managing agent for the anticipated Program Announcements/Funding Opportunities is the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) at the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command (USAMRDC).

The GWIRP is providing the information in this pre-announcement to allow investigators time to plan and develop ideas for submission to the anticipated FY20 funding opportunity. This pre-announcement should not be construed as an obligation by the Government. The FY20 GWIRP Program Announcements and General Application Instructions for the following award mechanisms will be posted on the Grants.gov website. Pre-application and application deadlines will be available when the Program Announcements are released. 

Applications submitted to the FY20 GWIRP must address one or more of the following Overarching Challenges:

  • Treatments: Eliminate the health consequences associated with GWI and revolutionize treatment
  • Diagnosis: Better define and diagnose GWI
  • Subtyping: Distinguish symptom clusters to better target treatments, identify underlying causes, and elucidate differences in severity
  • Determinants: Validate exposures associated with GWI and impacts on organs and systems
  • Consequences: Determine whether GWI is associated with greater risk for developing other disease states including neurological diseases, cancers, or other life-threatening and severely debilitating conditions
  • Communicate: Help veterans, their caregivers, researchers and health care providers communicate effectively about GWI, its symptoms, and potential treatments

https://cdmrp.army.mil/pubs/press/2020/20gwirppreann

Idea Award

Independent investigators at all academic levels

  • Preproposal is required; application submission is by invitation only.
  • Supports high-risk/high-reward research in the earliest stages of development that will contribute to markers or treatments for GWI.
  • Emphasis is on impact and innovation; applications must articulate the pathway to making a clinical impact for veterans with GWI, even if a clinical impact is not an immediate outcome.
  • Preliminary data not required.
  • Biorepository Contribution Option supports additional costs associated with submission of samples and data to the GWIRP-supported Boston Biorepository, Recruitment, and Integrative Network (BBRAIN).
  • Clinical trials not allowed.
  • Maximum funding of $150,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Biorepository Contribution Option: additional direct costs up to $20,000
  • Maximum period of performance is years

Research Advancement Award

Independent investigators at all academic levels

  • Preproposal is required; application submission is by invitation only.
  • Supports applied research in GWI that is aimed at continued expansion and validation of markers and treatments that are supported by evidence in the GWI field. 
  • Preliminary data in GWI ready for replication, expansion, and validation required.
  • Biorepository Contribution Option supports additional costs associated with submission of samples and data to the GWIRP supported BBRAIN.
  • Clinical trials not allowed.
  • Maximum funding of $625,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Biorepository Contribution Option: additional direct costs up to $20,000
  • Maximum period of performance is 3 years

Clinical Evaluation Award

Independent investigators at all academic levels

  • Preproposal is required; application submission is by invitation only.
  • Supports translation of research to proof-of-concept clinical trials in veterans with GWI (pilot, first–in-human, Phase I-IIa) or larger statistically powered biomarker trials with the potential to have a significant impact on GWI.
  • Validated pre-clinical GWI data and/or strong rationale from a GWI clinical investigation (or related illness) required.
  • Biorepository Contribution Option supports additional costs associated with submission of samples and data to the GWIRP-supported BBRAIN.

Clinical Consortium Collaboration Option supports additional costs associated with collaboration with the GWIRP- supported Gulf War Illness Clinical Trials and Interventions Consortium (GWICTIC).

  • Maximum funding of $1,500,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Biorepository Contribution Option: additional direct costs up to $20,000
  • Clinical Consortium Collaboration Option: additional direct costs up to $200,000
  • Maximum period of performance is 3 years

 

Therapeutic/Biomarker Trial Award

Independent investigators at all academic levels

  • Supports large-scale, pivotal (Phase IIb or III) trials that revolutionize the clinical management of GWI.
  • Objective pharmacodynamic biomarkers to measure the biological effect of an investigational therapeutic or predictive/cohort-selective biomarkers that indicate whether a specific therapy will be effective in veterans with GWI must be included in the trial design.
  • Substantial preliminary data in a GWI veteran population required.
  • Investigators must have experience in successfully leading large-scale projects and demonstrated the ability to implement a clinical project successfully.
  • Biorepository Contribution Option supports additional costs associated with submission of samples and data to the GWIRP-supported BBRAIN.
  • Clinical Consortium Collaboration Option supports additional costs associated with collaboration with the GWIRP-supported GWICTIC.
  • Funding must be used to support a clinical trial.
  • Maximum funding of $5,000,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Biorepository Contribution Option: additional direct costs up to $20,000
  • Clinical Consortium Collaboration Option: additional direct costs up to $500,000
  • Maximum period of performance is 4 years

Patient-Provider and Health Communications Award

Independent investigators at or above the level of Assistant Professor

  • Preproposal is required; application submission is by invitation only.
  • Supports development of strategies to effectively communicate GWI research and clinical recommendations to public health professionals, policymakers, healthcare providers, veterans with GWI, caregivers, or advocacy groups.
  • Maintenance and sustainment of the dissemination effort for continued awareness of GWI research and clinical findings to diverse audiences is an important review criterion.
  • Must include a consumer GWI advocate who will be integral throughout the planning and implementation of the research project.
  • Clinical trials not allowed.
  • Maximum funding of $600,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Maximum period of performance is 3 years

New Investigator Award

Transitioning Postdoctoral Fellow: Senior postdoctoral fellows with at least 3 years of postdoctoral training

Early-Career Investigator: Independent investigators within 5 years of last training position

New GWI Researcher: Established independent investigators who have received less than $300,000 in federally funded, non-mentored GWI research

  • Preproposal is required; application submission is by invitation only.
  • Encourages applications from early-stage and established investigators new to the field of GWI research.
  • Previous experience in GWI research is not required; however, collaborations with experienced GWI researchers are strongly encouraged.
  • Preliminary data not required.
  • Biorepository Contribution Option supports additional costs associated with submission of samples and data to the GWIRP-supported BBRAIN.
  • Clinical trials not allowed.
  • Maximum funding of $500,000 for direct costs (plus indirect costs)
  • Biorepository Contribution Option: additional direct costs up to $20,000
  • The maximum period of performance is 3 years

A pre-application is required and must be submitted through the electronic Biomedical Research Application Portal (eBRAP) at https://eBRAP.org prior to the pre-application deadline.  All applications must conform to the final Program Announcements and General Application Instructions that will be available for electronic downloading from the Grants.gov website.  The application package containing the required forms for each award mechanism will also be found on Grants.gov.  A listing of all CDMRP and other USAMRDC extramural funding opportunities can be obtained on the Grants.gov website by performing a basic search using CFDA Number 12.420. 

Submission deadlines are not available until the Program Announcements are released.  For email notification when Program Announcements are released, subscribe to program-specific news and updates under “Email Subscriptions” on the eBRAP homepage at https://eBRAP.org.  For more information about the GWIRP or other CDMRP-administered programs, please visit the CDMRP website (https://cdmrp.army.mil).

Point of Contact:

CDMRP Public Affairs
301-619-9783