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Glenn/American Federation for Aging Research Scholarships for Research in the Biology of Aging
The deadline for applications for the 2014 awards is January 15, 2014.
In order to continue to attract new generations of talented investigators, the Glenn/AFAR Scholarships for Research in the Biology of Aging have been established. The program is designed to give students enrolled in MD, DO, PhD, or combined-degree programs the opportunity to conduct a three-to-six-month research project focused on biomedical research in aging. The program aims to give students the chance to learn more about the field of aging research, as well as increase their understanding of the challenges involved in improving the quality of life for older people.
Up to ten scholarships will be awarded in 2014. They will enable PhD, MD, and DO candidates at any level to undertake a three-to-six-month research project on a subject related to the basic sciences and aging. Students are encouraged to make their proposals as focused as possible – the strongest projects are those that focus on a particular subject area. Clinical, epidemiology, health services, and outcome projects will not be considered. Examples of promising areas of research include, but are not limited to:
• Aging and immune function
• Stem Cell Aging
• Genetic Control of longevity
• Neurobiology and neuropathology of aging
• Invertebrate or vertebrate animal models
• Cardiovascular aging
• Aging and cellular stress response
• Metabolic and endocrine changes
• Age-related changes in cell proliferation
• Caloric restriction and aging
• DNA repair and control of gene expression
• Biology of the menopause
• Aging and apoptosis
• Biodemographic analysis of aging
• Comparative gerontology
• Evolutionary biological aspects of the biology of aging
• Macular degeneration
• Regenerative biology
• RNA control of gene expression in relation to age-related diseases
The research project must be carried out under the supervision of a faculty mentor. It may be carried out in any not-for-profit setting, such as universities, medical schools, hospitals, or non-government agencies. Applicants who also receive NIH, NSF or DOD stipend support are eligible to receive the Glenn/AFAR Scholarship. However, recipients cannot hold any other awards or scholarships concurrently with the Glenn/AFAR Scholarship. Each scholarship carries an award of $5,000. No indirect costs or overhead are allowed. Award recipients will be invited to attend the 2014 AFAR Grantee Conference.
Applicants must be MD, DO, PhD, or combined degree students in good standing at a not-for-profit institution in the United States. If accepted, applicants will be asked to submit a Proof of Enrollment form confirming their enrollment at a U.S. institution. Applicants may not hold another award or participate in another scholarship program concurrently with the Glenn/AFAR Scholarship.
Applications will be evaluated by an AFAR Scientific Committee on the basis of:
• The qualifications and ability of the applicant, as demonstrated by academic performance, statement of purpose, and letter of reference
• The merit and feasibility of the proposed research project and its relevance to aging
• The qualifications of the designated mentor, his or her endorsement of the research project, assurance of active supervision, and demonstrated commitment to aging research and to the student
• Likelihood that the project will advance the applicant’s interest and career in aging research
• Quality of the research environment
The deadline for receipt of all applications and supporting materials is January 15, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. EST.
Applicants will be notified on funding decisions or around April 30, 2014. If funded, the project start date must be before December 31, 2014.
The Scholarship recipients will be required to submit a full report detailing their research methods and findings within 90 days of completing the research projects. Similarly, the mentor will be required to provide an evaluation of the student’s performance and impressions of the impact of the program on the student’s career.
The award recipients are expected to attend the AFAR Grantee Conference which convenes AFAR grant recipients and leaders in the field to review and disseminate the research progress and findings of the grantees. The meeting encourages networking, facilitates collaboration, and enhances the development of leadership.
American Federation for Aging Research Research Grants for Junior Faculty
AFAR provides up to $100,000 for a one- to two-year award to junior faculty (M.D.s and Ph.D.s) to conduct research that will serve as the basis for longer term research efforts. AFAR-supported investigators study a broad range of biomedical and clinical topics including the causes of cellular senescence, the role of estrogen in the development of osteoporosis, the genetic factors associated with Alzheimer's disease, the effects of nutrition and exercise on the aging process, and much more. Since 1981, over 680 AFAR Research Grants have been awarded.
The major goal of this program is to assist in the development of the careers of junior investigators committed to pursuing careers in the field of aging research. AFAR supports research projects concerned with understanding the basic mechanisms of aging. Projects investigating age-related diseases are also supported, especially if approached from the point of view of how basic aging processes may lead to these outcomes. Projects concerning mechanisms underlying common geriatric functional disorders are also encouraged, as long as these include connections to fundamental problems in the biology of aging. Projects that deal strictly with clinical problems such as the diagnosis and treatment of disease, health outcomes, or the social context of aging are not eligible.
Examples of potentially fundable areas of research include, but are not limited to:
Aging and immune function
Stem Cell Aging
Genetic Control of longevity
Neurobiology and neuropathology of aging*
Mechanisms of dementia*
Invertebrate or vertebrate animal models
Aging and cellular stress response
Metabolic and endocrine changes
Age-related changes in cell proliferation
Caloric restriction and aging
DNA repair and control of gene expression
Biology of the menopause
Aging and apoptosis
Biodemographic analysis of aging
Evolutionary biological aspects of the biology of aging
*Applicants proposing a project in Alzheimer's Disease or healthy brain aging research should apply for the New Investigator Awards in Alzheimer's Disease. Applicants proposing other dementia-related research should apply for the AFAR Research grant.
It is anticipated that approximately 10 grants of up to $100,000 each will be awarded in 2014. Applicants may propose to use the award over the course of one or two years as justified by the proposed research. Up to 8% of funds may be budgeted for overhead or indirect costs (not to exceed $7,407). Funding will begin July 1, 2014.
The applicant must be an independent investigator with independent research space as described in a form completed by the Dean or Department Chair, and must be no more than 10 years beyond start of postdoctoral research training as of July 1, 2014. Exceptions to the ten year rule may be requested for unusual circumstances by emailing an NIH-style biosketch to AFAR at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The AFAR Research Grant Program does not provide support for:
Postdoctoral fellows in the laboratory of a senior investigator
Investigators who have already received major extramural funding for research (such as an R01 or NSF equivalent grant)
Senior faculty, i.e. at the rank of Associate Professor level or higher
Former AFAR Research Grant recipients
NIH Intramural program employees
Applicants for the 2014 Glenn/AFAR Breakthrough in Gerontology (BIG) award
Applicants who are conducting research at a for-profit institution, or at an institution outside of the United States
Four criteria are used to determine the merit of an application:
Qualifications of the applicant;
Quality of the proposed research;
Excellence of the research environment;
Likelihood that the project will advance the applicant's career in aging research.
The deadline for receipt of all Letters of Intent is December 16, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. EST. Please refer to the AFAR LOI instructions. Incomplete applications cannot be considered. All applications and supporting materials must be submitted through the website www.afar.org/grants/. The Letters of Intent will be reviewed by a committee. Applicants will be notified by January 31, 2014, and a subset of applicants will be invited to submit a full application by March 17, 2014 .
All LOI candidates who are invited to submit applications must have it endorsed by their institution. Final awards are announced by early June. The award start date is July 1, 2014. AFAR will not provide reviewer critiques to any applicants at any review level.
Investigators will be required to submit a brief narrative report on the progress of their research five months after the start date of the award. Final narrative and financial reports are required within three months following the end date of the award.
The award recipients are expected to attend the AFAR Grantee Conference which convenes AFAR grant recipients, mentors and leaders in the field to review and disseminate the research progress of the grantees and their findings. The meeting encourages networking, facilitates collaborations, and enhances the development of leadership.