Pilot project proposals

Call for Pilot Project Proposals

The Developmental Exposure Alcohol Research Center (DEARC) is a Specialized Alcohol Research Center located at Binghamton University that has been funded by NIAAA since 2009. The over-arching goal of the DEARC is to promote rapid gains in our understanding of ethanol action(s) on the developing brain, so that effective treatments can be developed and optimized for the future. To achieve this goal, DEARC projects utilize preclinical (rodent) models of early life alcohol exposure, with a particular emphasis on the fetal and adolescent neurodevelopmental periods.

The DEARC supports a pilot grant program that is designed to promote innovative research on developmental alcohol research and to provide funding for preliminary studies to support subsequent applications for additional research funding. Successful applicants are required to become active, engaged members of the DEARC community and to attend our monthly meetings. Successful applications must address one or more of the following goals of the DEARC Pilot Core:

  • To recruit new scientists to the DEARC community, including both early-stage researchers with little or no current federal research support as well as established researchers who have largely worked outside of the alcohol and development fields. 
  • To enable the acquisition and implementation of novel research technologies and/or analytical approaches by established DEARC investigators.
  • To support new collaborative teams that are poised to make rapid and unexpected advances in DEARC scientific objectives.

Eligibility. Investigators at academic research colleges and universities in upstate New York and surrounding locales (defined as ~ 3h drive from Binghamton) are eligible to apply, regardless of whether they have a preexisting relationship to the DEARC. Candidate projects must address the effects of alcohol in development and integrate within the overall themes and research activities of the DEARC. Successful proposals may also benefit from use of DEARC core resources (see binghamton.edu/dearc/).

Budget. Annual direct costs of up to $45,000 may be requested; one year of support is available. Indirect costs will also be provided according to the institution’s negotiated Facilities and Administration cost rate. The budget request must be detailed and fully justified in the application.

Full Proposal Requirements. Each application should consist of the following: 

1.    Abstract (350 words max)

2.    Specific Aims (1 page)

3.    Research Strategy (4 pages)

4.    A detailed budget and budget justification

5.    NIH-style biographical sketch for key personnel

6.    Facilities, Resources & Equipment

7.    Vertebrate Animals

Review Process.  Proposals will be peer-reviewed by experts in the field, including by members of the External Program Advisory Committee of the DEARC. Funding decisions will be made by the DEARC Leadership and ultimately approved by NIAAA.

Application procedure/timeline:  

Mid-December: Call for proposals is distributed.

February 1st: Letter of intent due. A brief letter indicating an intention to apply, listing key personnel and associated institutions and a brief statement of project objectives should be sent.  The LOI is non-binding. 

March 1st: Deadline for receipt of full proposals. Proposals should be sent to Amy Macdonald (amacdon@binghamton.edu). 

June 1st: Decision letters with critiques will be provided to all applicants. 

September 1st: Projected award start date.

Letters of Intent and full Application materials should be sent by email to Dr. David Jentsch (jjentsch@binghamton.edu; PI of the Pilot Core) and copied to Amy Macdonald (amacdon@binghamton.edu). Applicants with questions about the DEARC, eligibility criteria, or potential suitability of projects they are developing are encouraged to communicate with Dr. Jentsch by email.