Discussion: NIH Scores-Paylines-Policy-Peer Review

I will continue to update the NIH Paylines and Resources page, which is where most discussion of application review, scores, paylines, etc. can be found, but I will keep this page available for those who have bookmarked it to discuss anything related to NIH impact/review criteria scores, paylines, peer review, policy changes, and so forth. Many comments and questions on these topics are scattered in posts throughout the blog, so perhaps this central page will serve to consolidate shared advice, insight, debates, etc.

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553 Comments »

  1. AD said

    Hi writedit,

    I just received my R21 score for an application submitted to NIA. The impact score was 44 but the percentile was 19.

    The september 2016 payline was 22% for grants focusing on Alzheimer’s for requested funds below 500K.
    What can I make of this?
    Thank you.

    • writedit said

      It sounds like your application was reviewed in a study section that was recently recalibrated, where the SRO enforced the spreading of scores (this results in high scores but competitive percentiles). If your application falls within their Alzheimer’s portfolio, then you should have a good chance of funding, depending on what happens with the election and the budget negotiations in the aftermath.

      • AD said

        Thank you.

  2. Maureen Murphy said

    Is a score of 23 on an S10 grant historically competitive? When does NIH learn what there next fiscal year budget will be?

    • writedit said

      The budget must pass both houses of Congress and be signed in to law by the President, so this will likely happen next year, after the administration changes. This score could be competitive, though funding decisions are not entirely score-driven. When you get your summary statement, you can talk with your PO about your likelihood, recognizing the PO will have absolutely no guarantees and no idea, really, about what the appropriation might look like (any feedback would be based on your summary statement critiques and historical trends).

  3. John said

    We just received an award for a NIAID R01. In the same week we got the award, two of us (one of Co-PIs and primary Co-I) also received notice that we had been awarded a sabbatical semester, which is in the same year data collection will occur. I am scared of approaching my PO with this idea, but has anyone ever heard of deferring an R01 for a year?

    • writedit said

      What would have been best would be to suspend the NOA for a year (before issuing it or starting the work), which is not uncommon. Stopping in the middle is more difficult, depending on the project and the science. If you have already received the award and begun the work, then you will need to talk with your PO about developing a revised budget and plan that indicates how the work on the project will continue in your absence (including reallocating your effort to another investigator, if that is feasible). If only you and your co-I can do the work, then you need to demonstrate the science will not suffer if you suspend work. You will definitely need to talk with the PO no matter what, since both your effort will change by more than 25%, as it sounds as though neither of you can or intend to work on the project during your sabbaticals. If that is the case (ie, you cannot work on the R01 project and no one else can do the work), I would suggest that you consider requesting a delay in your sabbatical until the R01 project is complete (your institution should be thrilled that you need to due to an R01 award).

  4. Johannes said

    Hi Writedit,

    I recently received the 2nd-year fund of my R21, which was 10% less than the originally approved budget (from $125k to $112.5k). Do you know why?

    Thanks!

    • writedit said

      The NIH is operating under a continuing resolution, which means all awards are funded at 90% of the approved budget until Congress passes and the President signs a new budget. When this happens, the remaining 10% should be released (no increase or a cut to the NIH appropriation could affect your award, but I expect the NIH to at least maintain the same level as last year). See the CR notice for more details: https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-OD-17-001.html … except the current CR now lasts until April 28, 2017 (not sure why NIH did not update the notice, but the same policy applies).

    • fish_fish said

      Hi, Justin,
      Did you get any updated information about your NCI K99? My lab member got 30 in June and he is still waiting for the council meeting.

  5. Justin said

    Hi All,

    I received a impact score of 29 (no percentile posted) for my K99 A0 submission to NCI. Does anyone have any idea where this score falls in terms of fundability?

    Thanks!

    • Hi Justin – I am in the same boat. Impact score of 31 but no percentile – submission to NCI for K99. Does anyone know when the percentile is typically posted after you receive your impact score?

      • writedit said

        As I just mentioned, you won’t receive a percentile. When you receive your summary statement, check with your PO as to whether you should resubmit (which is the likely advice, since you can withdraw the resubmission if your application scored at 31 receives an award).

      • fish_fish said

        Hi, laurenecole610,
        Did you get any updated information about your NCI K99? My lab member got 30 in June and he is still waiting for the council meeting.

    • writedit said

      You won’t get a percentile. The score may be high – but it is hard to say what the NCI budget will look like for FY17. Although they received a boost of moonshot funding from the 21st Century Cures Act, little progress has been made (publicly) on the federal budget, though I don’t expect NIH to take a hit. When you receive your summary statement, you can check with your PO about the likelihood of funding and specifically ask whether you should resubmit. My guess is that will be the advice you receive, since you can withdraw the resubmission if this application scored at 29 receives an award.

  6. Gator16 said

    I received a impact score of 30 on an A1 NHLBI K23 application. It looks like the payline is 32. What are the chances my application gets funded? Thanks.

    • writedit said

      Congratulations – unless something goes terribly wrong with your administrative review (& you would have an inkling there might be a problem – it wouldn’t be a surprise), you will receive an award. Your PO won’t have an idea on timing for a while, but he/she can confirm this (best to wait until you receive your summary statement), after which you can sit tight until you are asked for JIT.

      • Gator16 said

        That is good news, thanks!

  7. AnotherNewPI said

    Hi, I submitted an R21 to NIMH back in October, and I just received my scores today. Impact Score: 24 (percentile: 13th). I’ll consult with the PO once I have a summary statement, but can anyone give insight into whether NIMH has funded R21s at the 13th percentile in the past? Thanks!

    • writedit said

      I’ll be interested to see if anyone chimes in, but a 13th percentile falls in the zone of case-by-case consideration, in which case your PO will be the best indicator as to your funding likelihood (based on his/her enthusiasm for your work).

      • AnotherNewPI said

        Hi writedit — thank for the response and the excellent blog! My application was funded, so I wanted to share my timeline:

        06/28/2017 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
        05/26/2017 Pending administrative review.
        03/01/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending.
        10/25/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending.
        10/17/2016 Application entered into system

  8. Proton said

    What the status “council review completed” really means? Council happened over 1mo ago, no changes after

    • writedit said

      “Council review completed” is the final status for most applications (ie, those not receiving awards). You will hear from your PO (or GMS) with a request for JIT if your application is being considered for funding, at which point it will take on a Pending status of some sort. Otherwise, that status won’t change for years (until the IC administratively withdraws the application).

  9. W said

    Hi, I just got the impact score for my DP2 grant application. The number of the score is very high, which makes me feel bad. Although on the DP2 website, they say “It is difficult to interpret priority scores”, I am curious what is the score range for funding? Also, usually when will the summary statement be released? Thanks!

    • writedit said

      You should get the summary statement within a few weeks – though it can take up to 6 weeks (sometimes more). At that point, you can check with the PO to get a better idea where you stand. A very high score is unlikely to receive an award unless program really likes your science and is ready to take a chance – but it depends on the specific comments (about why reviewers were concerned).

      • HW said

        Does an impact score in low 30s have any chance to be funded for DP2 based on historic data?

      • writedit said

        I am not aware of any historic data on DP2 scores, but your PO should have some insight.

  10. SK said

    What score is considered borderline for DP2 funding?

    • writedit said

      There is no specific score range, but when you have your summary statement, you can check with the PO for some insight as to where you stand.

  11. NewPI said

    Congrats on getting it through both rounds of review – a major achievement!

  12. sk said

    Is scoring for DP2 similar to R01 i,e, scores from 10-30 have a good chance of funding (of course depending on institute/program fit). Since only 20% of the applications get an impact score, are the scores really spread out or do they tend to cluster in the 10-30 range?

    • writedit said

      Unfortunately, I am not aware of current scoring and funding patterns for the DP2s. SROs do try to keep the scores spread, whether half or three-quarters of the applications from the original pool have been dropped, so you shouldn’t assume that all the scores are clustered below 30 (though they won’t be going to the far end of the range). However, I do not have any direct knowledge of how these review panels are run. Based on the DP2 awardees whom I know, program seems to focus on high-risk projects that would be difficult to secure funding through traditional study sections (eg, genuinely multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary projects that span multiple disciplines), so this might not necessarily result in funding based on assigned scores, though IC personnel would pay close attention to scientific concerns raised related to feasibility, rigor, etc.

  13. LCAS said

    Hi,

    I submitted a Phase II STTR January 5th to NCATS, and just received a score of 35.

    NCATS states that it doesn’t have a payline, but rather a “fiscal policy”. What is their process for funding? Can they reach for a score like ours? In the past, our PO has been very supportive, and our topic area (organ-chips) seems to be a big focus of NCATS.

    My other question is how does a January submission relate to the fiscal year? Is this a 2016 FY, or will we have to wait for more info on the continuing resolution?

    Thanks in advance!

    • writedit said

      Your Jan 5 application will be funded in FY17 (started Oct 1, 2016 – currently under CR). NCATS does not fund according to a strict payline, though they are not likely to reach too far up except for science they really want to fund. When you receive your summary statement, you can talk with your PO about likelihood of funding and whether you should resubmit (even if just for insurance). If you have any update data or developments for your technology that might mitigate some of the concerns raised in the review, this would improve your chances of funding – so it depends on the review and any progress you have made since submission.

  14. Newbie said

    Hello writedit,

    I am an ESI applying for the junior NIGMS MIRA. This is actually my second time (not discussed first time). My application was reviewed last week and I received a score of 42. Does this mean that I should move one and there is little to no chance of being funded. Thanks in advance!

    • writedit said

      Last year, scores were pretty high, too. After you receive your summary statement, you should check with your PO about next steps, including whether you should start preparing a different application for submission (eg, R01).

      • Newbie said

        Thank you for your response! Considering the recent depressing news about funding cuts, I am not holding my breath for this one! I have been looking for some data on the GMS website but it seems that there is no reported payline about MIRA.

      • writedit said

        Try searching this page and the NIH Paylines & Resources page for comments about MIRA (unfortunately, I cannot tag comments to make this easier, but using Find to look for MIRA etc. should work).

        >

      • Newbie said

        Thank you and I was able to find some useful info. It seems that a score as high as 48 received funding last year. I will keep my fingers crossed and hope for the same outcome!

  15. Weiti said

    Any experience with NIMHD? I got a R03 with score of 35. Can’t find anywhere discuss about this institution. Will talk to PO next week, but would like to have some idea which direction should I go. Thanks.

    • writedit said

      NIMHD is hard to read since they do not fund as many research project grants. Higher scores are usually safer for R03s, but that seems a bit high – for other ICs anyway. You will probably want to plan on resubmission but can ask the PO for confirmation as to whether this will be necessary or advisable (as insurance). If so, you’ll want the PO’s take on the summary statement and any insight from attending the review meeting.

  16. vl said

    Hi! Writedit. I submitted the JIT request from GMO for my R21 1.5 months ago (NIA), but have not received NOA. I wondered if there will be any changes in this potential funding? Thanks!

  17. BB said

    I am a 3rd year post-doctoral fellow, working on rare metabolic disorders. My current research focus on understanding the pathophysiology and developing new therapies for the rare genetic disorders. I would like to continue my carrier in academia. Since I’m in my last stage of the post-doctoral fellowship, I would like to know about the available grant opportunities that I could apply to pursue my carrier goals. Any directions and insights toward this would be greatly appreciated.

    • writedit said

      You are just within the eligibility for a K99/R00 award (https://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/pa-files/PA-16-193.html), which would fund another postdoc year and give you starting research funds once you have a tenure-track position at an academic institution. If you are or will soon be a citizen or green card holder, you could apply for a K22 award (https://researchtraining.nih.gov/programs/career-development/K22), if your interests fall within those of one of the ICs participating in the K22 mechanism (NCI, NIAID, NIDCD, NIDCR, NINDS, NIMH, NHLBI). You could also look for scholar positions available on K12 or KL2 awards at various universities (these are internally funded career development slots, usually reserved for current faculty but also used to recruit & support new faculty). Otherwise, once you have a job somewhere, you could apply for K01 or RPG funding (R01 or R21, depending on the nature of the project).

  18. AA said

    I’m a DP2 applicant with a score that the PO suggested might be picked up based on programmatic interest and might not (32). Are there any tea leaves to be read in the new 2 billion in appropriations to the NIH? I know there were lots of earmarks for cancer, Alzheimers, precision medicine, BRAIN and a smidge for antibiotic resistance. How does this money get spread around by funding mechanism? Might there be more DP2s this year? If my application fits one of the earmark groups is there anything else I can do?

    • writedit said

      There is nothing else you can do to increase your chances of funding. The “earmark” funds for priority areas flagged by Congress will likely be used mainly to increase R01 and other RPG awards (since Congress likes to track the number of R01s), but ICs could use them for other mechanisms such as DP2 (or funds freed up by these “earmark” funds). You shouldn’t count on that, though, and the budgetary emphasis on certain areas will not increase your likelihood of funding specifically. Rather, an IC reviewing your application will need to be excited by you as an investigator and your science.

  19. JL said

    Hi- I recently received word that my SBIR application was recommended for funding during the advisory council meeting. How much stock should I put into the likelihood of funding based on that information (e.g. should I keep holding my breath or allow for a moment of celebration as I continue to wait)?

    • writedit said

      Well, almost all applications sent to Council are recommended for funding, but not all of them will receive awards (an application cannot be considered for an award if Council does not approve it first). You are on the paylist, but until your PO says you are being considered for an award and/or you receive a JIT request from the PO or GMS, then you should probably hold off on celebrations. If your PO says you can be “cautiously optimistic”, then you can put the champagne in the fridge. Alternatively, you can ask the PO if you need to resubmit for insurance (though often a PO will say to resubmit even if you have a reasonable chance of an award, since they don’t want to risk your losing a cycle).

  20. bug said

    DP2s are starting to get assigned to ICs. Mine just got transferred to an institute a few days ago (16 Impact Score). From talking to two POs, they may fund earlier this year than usual (e.g. as early as June/July in some cases). Not sure if that is specific to my situation or more generally applicable. Good luck to all…

    • writedit said

      Great – thank you so much for sharing your intel – and congratulations and best wishes for success with your research!

    • AA said

      As a fellow DP2 applicant, that’s really great to know. Thanks for sharing and CONGRATULATIONS!

      • AA said

        Woah. Just got assigned to an institute as well. Keeping fingers crossed that institute assignment is as predictive of funding this year as it was in years past. The information on this blog has been extremely valuable. Thank you!

      • writedit said

        Woohoo – good luck and please keep us posted!

      • bug said

        Congrats! Counsel met on 18th… Gah! Need to get my new IACUC protocol approved asap.

      • AA said

        Bug, have you heard anything about your DP2? PO for the award had told me that “decisions would be made by the end of June.” It sounds like he said similar things to you. If that’s the real timeline then I’m worried having been assigned to an IC in May wasn’t worth very much.

      • bug said

        Looks like notification to at least some awardees was sent today, official NOAs “in the next few weeks”.

      • AA said

        Congratulations! This is so exciting! And see you in Bethesda in June 2018!

      • HW said

        AA, You got any update after institute assignment ? Mine was assigned to an IC in mid-July, but no further change since then.

    • AA said

      HW, yes. On the 20th I got an unofficial email saying I was a recipient and that i would get an NOA in the next few weeks. For what it’s worth the PO had said to me in the spring that there might be a delay in notification between the awardees whose funding is coming from the OD vs the awardees whose funding is coming from some of the institutes (though I am among the institute funded). Also, the press release will have similar timing to previous years (October), so there is still time. Good luck!

      • HW said

        AA, congratulations and thank you so much for sharing your intel !

  21. NewPI said

    Hi Writedit,
    Just received NOA from NIA and wanted to share timeline if it helps others.
    Timeline as new faculty:
    06/05/2015 – 1st submission to regular study section = not discussed (At first, I was admittedly very embarrassed … now I tell any new PI so they see it can end with a positive outcome… one step at a time).
    12/16/2015 – Revised but sent to PAR for AD as A0 = impact score 47, 41%
    06/07/2016 – Revised and sent to same PAR for AD as A1 and included all suggested changes and new data = impact score 29, 14% (*last cycle for ESI status). I let my PO know that I was losing ESI after this cycle and that seemed to be a relevant fact.
    Council 01/2017 and PO on fence about state of budget and funding
    I emailed PO periodically – through March 3rd – PO had little info to share but always responded and provided a date to follow-up. Have always had good interactions with NIA POs!
    3/3/2017 – PO indicates application on list to be paid
    5/15/2017 – NOA; but cut in budget despite being AD (~20%)

    What is your advice regarding conversations with PO to scale back the science so it can fit into the revised budget?

    • writedit said

      You should first ask how much, if any, of the cut will be restored once NIA receives its appropriation. Certainly not 20%, though, so you can then ask about adjusting one or more aim. You should have an idea in advance of how you would alter your approach (and aims) to be feasible with the reduced funding level.

    • writedit said

      And thank you so much, too, for sharing your detailed timeline. Again, best wishes for success with your research!

      • NewPI said

        Writedit, you have literally been helping me since 2011 starting with advise on my K99/R00 that was eventually funded! Sharing my timeline is the least I can do! Thanks a million!

  22. R21 said

    Thank you so much for this valuable resource.

    When including other personnel in an application (e.g., a named postdoc), is it necessary that they have an eRA commons account (to list on their biosketch)? Or is this something they can register for if the application is funded?

    • writedit said

      It is not required, but it takes so little time that your postdoc might as well register now.

  23. DesperateNewPI said

    Anyone can share the score led to funding of NIH director’s innovator award? I got into the second round review but had no estimate payline.

    • Lili said

      Congratulations on going to second round. That really is something! About the score. I know people with 15 that got it and people with 40 that got it. I also know people with 25 that DID NOT get it. I am pretty confident that for this particular DP2 mechanism the summary statement is very important. You want the reviews to unanimously agree with the “innovativeness”. In other words “approach” is less important (and that can equal to a less than optimal score for example). If the reviews say it is very innovative, flaws like “approach” you can try to address on the two-page rebuttal.

      • DesperateNewPI said

        Thanks Lili, that is helpful.

    • bug said

      Scores I know of from prior years :
      10 got it
      16 got it
      19 got it
      27 got it
      33 didn’t
      34 got it
      37 didn’t
      40 didn’t (my first try)
      76 didn’t

      If you don’t get it on first try, rework it and resubmit. Feedback helped me find the right angle.

      • writedit said

        Congrats on all your “got it” scores – thank you so much for posting this span of scores that did and did not receive awards (and your encouragement to those feeling discouraged).

  24. R01 hopeful said

    Hi –

    I have a quick question about NIH JIT request: is it always the case that if an application is to be considered for funding, NIH will ask for JIT “before” council meeting? Could there be a situation when JIT is requested (and, the grant subsequently funded) “after” council? We have an R01 which seems to be within fundable range (with NIEHS), but our PO hasn’t been very responsive. We haven’t received a JIT request as well. Any advice?

    • writedit said

      The request can certainly come after Council meets. IC procedures differ in terms of the timing of JIT, but they have internal discussions after Council about which applications in the gray zone or submitted to RFAs/PARs should receive awards, so those JIT requests are definitely delayed. If your PO has responded but not been very clear or informative, this isn’t unusual (you might ask if you should resubmit, which is an easier question for him/her to answer), since the final appropriation hasn’t reached NIEHS yet. If your PO hasn’t responded at all (even to acknowledge your contact), unless you do need to know if you should resubmit, then you should wait until mid June (PO may not have information until after Council). If you haven’t had any response since submitting (and/or need to know if you should resubmit in July), then check for the chief of your branch and politely indicate you would appreciate guidance as to your application status/need to resubmit.

  25. PO_repellant said

    Hi — Writeedit and others,

    I’ve been benefitting from this blog for many years now! I first stumbled upon it when trying to figure out whether my F32 was fundable (it was), and since then based on lots of advice here, I’ve had a K01 and R21 funded. In many instances, this has been more accessible than my mentors! Thank you!

    I now seek advice about how to engage my K01 PO. In short, he has never ever responded to me by email in any way. From the time when I simply wrote to welcome him to his new position (he assumed the job just shortly before I learned about the funding decision – 1.5 years ago), to when I was email to ask about a funding time line (1 year ago), to more recently when I have a budget question when I have emailed him 3 separate times when he has not acknowledged or responded.

    My sole interaction with him was at a NIH booth at a national conference, when I introduced myself, and briefly told him what we were doing within the K01 project. He appeared supportive and enthusiastic, and told me to email him and discuss the specifics of the question. I have emailed him twice since (the emails were a month apart)…again no response. Not even automated emails indicating vacation or acknowledgements that email was received.

    So now, I am at a loss of how to approach my PO. Do I keep sending emails into the void of cyberspace? Do I cold call him (I have tried once, left a message, and no response)? Or should I start engaging the supervising PO (if there is such a position)?

    I do not want to upset him as I know I will have to work with him for many years to come, but this is the least responsive of any PO that I’ve ever interacted with at any agency…

    Your advice is much appreciated.

    PO_repellant

  26. AMP said

    Hi,

    My R21 missed the payline by one point at NIAID (payline at 28 now). The PO says that it is on the list for potential payment with end of year funds. But cannot guarantee funding and we should know in the next few weeks which applications will be funded. I am hesitating whether to submit a new application for this coming cycle on June 15th. Any suggestions? Thank you!!

    • writedit said

      You should absolutely submit your application. If your current R21 is picked up for funding, you can administratively withdraw the June 15th application. If your R21 is not funded, you don’t lose a cycle.

  27. AD said

    Hi Writedit,
    My NIA R21 (AD related) was reviewed in October 2016 and January 2017 council (percentile 19; pay line 28 for 2017). JIT has been showing since October but did not receive any request for the JIT documents.
    My status since January has been “Council Review Completed”, but changed to “Pending Administrative Review” on 6/2/17.
    I have not received anything from GMS or PO. Should I work on the JIT documents before someone contacts me, or should I wait to hear something?
    Thank you!

    • writedit said

      That is unusual for your status to change before JIT is requested (and no request soon after). You should check with your PO (or GMS) as to whether you should submit JIT now. I assume you proactively, based on your score, took care of any approvals needed (IACUC, IRB, etc.), such that you can send the JIT straight away.

      • AD said

        Thank you for the reply.
        My IACUC has not been approved yet but is under process because I was not within the initial pay line and the pay line changed mid of May and I am now within the pay line. The PO was not responsive. As suggested by my mentors, I did turn in my IACUC last week that is under review.
        This morning I received an official JIT request with the documents due by Monday. I am not sure how this is going to work because my IACUC is still pending.
        Any thoughts?
        Thank you!

      • Lili said

        Hi AD, congrats on your award! I had a situation where the IACUC was only approved after the NOA. In the letter of award (September 30) there was a note saying that I had to provide an approved IACUC before Dec 1 or else the contract would be terminated. Naturally I sent the IACUC approval like mid-october and it was fine.

      • writedit said

        As Lili noted, either your NoA or the actual release of funds will be delayed until you have IACUC approval. In Lili’s case, the IC had no choice but to issue a NOA (to get it in before the next FY started on Oct 1), whereas they may just delay your NOA. You should send the rest of the JIT with the IACUC review date (estimate if not known). This will allow them to process the rest of the JIT and prepare the award, though no funds can be released until the regulatory approval is submitted.

  28. AD said

    Hi Lili,
    Thank you for calming my nerves (have my fingers crossed). I will keep the blog posted on what happens.
    Thanks again!

  29. Nosehair said

    Hello roops,
    Just wondering whether you were able to get your salary portion of the K22 to a postdoc/tech? Thanks, -NH

  30. YK said

    Hi, I just got priority score 28 for an R21 at NIAID. The payline is 28 for R21s….anybody could chime in if this might be paid? it was a resubmission and the score improved from 42. I so much need this grant to be funded……

    • writedit said

      Payline is up to and including 28, so you’re good, assuming there are no administrative issues (be sure to get any IRB, IACUC, or other regulatory approvals you might need).

  31. grant_writer said

    Hi, avatar, I am in the same situation as yours. I wonder if the secondary IC has funded your proposal? Thanks-

  32. YJ said

    Hi writedit, My R01 application to NIGMS was scored 17/6%. My current ADC is slightly over $500K, and for this r01 application I proposed $250 ADC. If this R01 is being considered for funding, is the NIGMS well-funded lab policy (>$750K)?
    Per NIGMS site, “Prior to considering awards to investigators whose total research support from all sources, including the pending award, exceeds $750,000 (annual direct costs), special analysis and justification should be required”.

    In fact, large portion of my current funding (200K) is one-year grant, which will be completed in 2018 summer. Also, I am expecting NIGMS standard budget cut of the R01 application, so it may not exceed >$750K total, but
    I am just worried if this is considered under a well-funded laboratory at the Council meeting. Your advice will be greatly appreciated!!! Thanks!

    • writedit said

      You can talk with your PO, but you shouldn’t have anything to worry about. Council takes your individual situation into consideration, including the one-year award, when reviewing applications bumping against the $750K ceiling. Your PO can let you know if you can/should prepare a brief justification for consideration at Council.

      • YJ said

        Thanks for your response! In fact, I received another r21 scored well (NCI, 6%). Both R01 and R21 will be at this fall Council though these will be treated at different institution. Do you think if this R21 will influence the funding decision of the R01 because of the $750 ceiling?

      • writedit said

        I don’t think the NIGMS policy is limited to NIGMS awards, so your R21 might be considered as part of Council’s consideration of your situation. If the awards are all for different projects (different areas/disciplines), then you are more likely to be granted an exception, especially since the R21 is just 2 years. However, with the ICs needing to support the new NGRI policies and a big question mark with regard to the FY18 budget, Council might be more strict. When it gets closer to the meeting date (and we have an inkling, hopefully, of the budget situation), you can check with your PO.

  33. Frank said

    Hi writedit,

    I had one K award and this award ended already. Now i want to submit a R01 grant based on this K award. Is it Okay for me to use some paragraphs in my K award? More specifically, i want to use some paragraphs from my own K award for one sub aim of one aim of my new R01 grant proposal (there are 3 aims and 6 sub-aims in total).

    Thanks

    Frank

    • writedit said

      You can recycle the text as long as the work has not already been completed as part of your K project. However, even if you did not do the proposed work, I would hope that you would have enough new knowledge from your K project to, at the very least, update the aim itself (including rationale and anticipated findings) and the wording of the text.

  34. Bing Lu said

    Hi, I submitted my R01 in Feb 2017, got a good score in June 2017, 10 percentile (2017 payline 13 percentile). But the council meeting will be in Oct 2017. Can my grant use 2017 payline, or 2018 payline? Thanks.

    Bing

    • writedit said

      Your grant will fall under the FY18 payline, which will not be known for many months – probably not until next year (calendar year 2018), though hopefully sooner than that – and with a better budget than was proposed by the White House. Depending on the IC, a 10th percentile should be safe – or one would hope.

      • Bing Lu said

        Thanks a lot. But I am just wondering, so FY2017 just funds the applications submitted in Oct 2016? If so 2017 money should have a lot left. Is that right? I am confused why FY2017 does fund 2017 applications.

        Thanks again.
        Bing

      • writedit said

        The NIH cannot carry any funds over from one FY to the next – they have to spend everything they receive (like the ARRA spending frenzy about 8 years ago). Due to the lag time between submission, peer review, and Council review, applications submitted in one calendar year (eg, Feb, June, & Oct cycles in 2017) are awarded under the next FY (eg, FY18). Special FOAs (RFAs, RFPs) can have applications and awards in the same calendar/FY year, but these are the exceptions. Theoretically, the first cycle applications (~Feb) should receive awards in December of the same year, but due to federal budget delays, this is rare now.

  35. ABD said

    Hi WritedIt,

    I submitted an NHLBI K99 award in February 2016 and received a 35 (payline 32). The status has said “Council Review Completed” since October 2016 but this morning it changed to “Pending.” My PO had mentioned that it would be re-reviewed for select pay probably in June. Does this status change simply mean they are re-reviewing or perhaps is this more hopeful of a change? Thank you!

    • writedit said

      This is good news – they have conducted a programmatic review of your application for select pay and have begun an administrative review, which is likely to result in an award, assuming no regulatory or budgetary issues arise. You can check in with your PO for an update and to ask if he/she needs anything else from you.

      • ABD said

        Thanks for the response! How often would you say it’s ok to check in with your PO? I haven’t heard a response in over a week and don’t want to send a follow up if that’s too persistent.

      • writedit said

        I’d suggest you check back after July 5 if your status hasn’t changed, maybe even not until the following Monday (they will get in touch if they have a question or concern). ICs only received their appropriation in late May or early June, so they are still catching up on scores of applications from the first two funding cycles. If you check some of the timelines posted by prior commenters, you can see the “Pending” status can last from weeks to months (the latter won’t occur in your case, though – you’ve already waited your months).

      • ABD said

        Hello again,

        You were absolutely correct! Received my NOA this morning. As you can see below my journey was a bit longer than usual, so my advice would be to not get discouraged. Thanks for continuing to provide such a helpful resource.

        07/31/2017 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
        06/21/2017 Pending administrative review. Refer any questions to Program Official or Grants Management Specialist.
        10/27/2016 Council review completed.
        06/13/2016 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
        02/22/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
        02/11/2016 Application entered into system

      • writedit said

        Woohoo! Congratulations on the award (finally) and persevering! Thank you so much for sharing your experience all along the way as a great example of not getting discouraged (sorry you had to endure ~18 months of waiting to provide this example, though). Best wishes for success with your project and your career in biomedical research!

  36. JRM said

    I would really thank the people here for the very helpful discusuions. Just had a quick question. Lately I see that the Award Document Number appers in the eRA commons site. I was wondering if this number is always there or it appers just before a NOA is about to come? Thanks
    Jyoti

    • John said

      Hi JRM, do you have any anwser on the Award Document Number? I have the same question, I noted today a Award Document Number appers in the eRA commons site.

      • writedit said

        I am so sorry that I never answered this. I do not know for sure, but I would assume that the Award Document number is for the NOA. You can ask your GMS or PO to be sure, but if you had an application being processed for an award, then I would assume this is the case.

  37. VV said

    Hi WritedIt,

    I submitted an NIDDK K25 award and just received a 45 impact score. I would like to know what the paylines are for the NIDDK K25 awards are since I could not find it online. Any help would be highly appreciated!

    Thanks

    • writedit said

      NIDDK does not usually post a lot of paylines, but 45 is a bit high. When you receive your summary statement, you can check with your PO about next steps, including how best to respond to reviewers in your resubmission.

  38. fringe_funds said

    I’ve just been funded by the R15 program. I’d like to obtain supplemental funds to replacing aging equipment. Are there any examples of such applications? Thanks!

    • writedit said

      If you mean an administrative supplement, then you should talk with your PO. These supplements do not go for peer review but instead are discussed internally. You don’t need an example so much as insight into what information the IC will want to have available as part of their discussions. These are just 6-page narratives, you would essentially explain why the equipment is needed to complete the funded research. Now, the IC may wonder why you proposed doing the work if you didn’t have the equipment (or didn’t request it in your original budget), so this is again a conversation you should have with your PO to be sure you are asking in a way the IC will honor your request.

  39. R01_Waiting said

    I have a well scored R01 application (6th%) that has been in limbo (council met in Oct 2016), and several weeks ago the status in Commons changed from “council review completed” to “pending administrative review.” I received a formal request for JIT docs, which I subsequently sent in, and when I connected with my PO, she said they were trying to fund it, but nothing is final until NoA is sent. On 7/3, I noticed in Commons the status has now moved back to “council review completed” which has me a bit anxious. Is that typical?

    • writedit said

      Hmm. It is hard to believe a 6th percentile application reviewed in 2016 for FY17 has not been funded at all, much less that it is in limbo, unless there are regulatory or budget issues. Unfortunately, the switch from pending back to “Council review completed” is not especially good news. It doesn’t mean that it won’t go back to “administrative review”, but you should check with your PO to find out if there was a problem in your JIT. If they think you are getting too much funding for this line of work, they might take you out of consideration. If that is the case (well-funded PI and/or overlapping funding) and you can make a case for this award, it would be good to do this sooner than later.

    • PA said

      I’m in the same position- R01 was scored at 5th percentile in review session from June 2016, council approved in September 2016, and no word about funding yet. Has anyone received an NOA recently?

      • writedit said

        If this is truly June (SRG) and September (Council) 2016, your application should be moving forward for processing, and I am surprised it has not as yet. You should definitely check with your PO for an update. I assume you submitted JIT materials already (if not, then definitely contact the PO) and that no problems were flagged (regulatory, overlapping funding, etc.).

  40. looking for funding said

    How easy is it to get a minority supplement for a URM student in the lab? Is it competitive and based on the student’s grades from undergrad? I am a relatively new PI, and I haven’t graduated any PhD students yet. There is a URM student I want to take, but probably won’t have money for after the first year unless she gets a fellowship. People tell me that I can just get a minority supplement, but I have no experience with this. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

    • AA said

      Don’t know if you’ve sen this already, but I found it extremely helpful. It doesn’t answer your question exactly, but part of the answer is that it depends what mechanism you are using. http://drugmonkey.scientopia.org/2016/11/18/grant-supplements-and-diversity-efforts/

    • writedit said

      Talk with your PO about what you intend to propose. As long as your award qualifies (has enough time left) and your PO concurs with your broad plan, you should be in good shape, since these are discussed internally (vs going to peer review). You can have more than one supplement if you have more than one URM interested (or say a high school or undergrad URM interested for a summer or a postdoc in need of support until they can get an F32 or K in).

  41. YJ said

    Hi writedit,
    I received JIT request from NIGMS for my R01 application. In fact, I also received a CTSI intramural funding recently, designed for supporting pilot research (e.g. generating preliminary data, 50K only for one year) for acquiring subsequent long-term extramural funding (e.g. NIH R01). Hence, there is some scientific overlap between this pilot grant and specific aim 2 of the R01 proposal.
    I discussed with my institutional administrative team about this issue, and their suggestion was to justify this overlap by stating that “This pilot research support will be used to accomplish Aim2 despite the shortfall in NIH funding due to standard budget cut (expecting 24% standard budget cut)”. However, I feel like that this justification is not strong enough, so what I am thinking is to end the intramural funding early in case of the r01 funded (before the start date of the R01).
    “This is an intramular pilot research funding program, designed for generating preliminary data of the pending R01 application. If the pending application is awarded, this pilot research funding will be terminated immediately”
    What do you think?

    • writedit said

      Did you already receive the entire $50K (and just not spent it yet), or is it being paid out monthly? If the pilot award generated preliminary data for your R01, submitted last fall (I assume), then it should be running out soon in any case – and your R01 PO already knows you have the pilot funding (would have been listed in your application). Your CTSA will also have to report back to NCATS about your pilot funding progress (NCATS will be happy about the R01), so you want to be sure they are happy with how the $ was used, too. You could use whatever of the $50K you haven’t spent yet to extend/collect more data for Aim 2 (ie, more samples, additional data from each sample, analyze data in additional ways, etc.) – hard to give examples without knowing if this is clinical or bench or computational or what, but essentially, extend the work in Aim 2 in some way vs simply help fund what was proposed in the R01. You can ask your R01 PO about this approach (vs use pilot $ to make up for R01 shortfall in Aim 2 work); if you are ESI, then you may not have a significant budget cut (a 24% cut is not “standard” across the NIH in any case, once the federal government has moved from a CR to final budget). The NIH likes to see its funding leveraged, so you don’t need to decline the rest of the $50K but instead put it to good use in meeting/expanding the peer-reviewed goals of the science. What you should not worry about is any impact of the pilot funding on receiving your R01 – this decision is independent of what happens with the pilot $. NIGMS just wants to be sure you are not receiving duplicate funding to do the exact same work (ie, using one award to pay for Aim 2 and pocketing $ from either NCATS or NIGMS). You don’t need to say you will terminate the intramural funding because you think it endangers your R01.

      • YJ said

        Thanks your suggestion! Suggestion of using the money to get more data for Aim 2 will be appropriate.. In fact, I have just received an award letter of the pilot grant and no money has been spent so far. I am not an ESI, have multiple NIH fundings (one R01, two R21), so I am expecting significant budget cut..

      • writedit said

        Aha. I thought you were saying that you had actually used the pilot $ to generate preliminary data for this R01. That should still be okay (extending Aim 2 of R01), but now you should probably check with your CTSI, too, since they may need approval from NCATS for the $ to be used in that manner (extending/expanding Aim 2 of R01 vs generating preliminary data). If there is any additional work related to the R01 but in a new direction (so still more in the vein of generating preliminary data, but leveraging the R01 to launch a new tangent), that might be another option … but NCATS may be fine with just extending the work on Aim 2 (still probably a better strategy than saying you’ll use NCATS $ to make up for anticipated budget shortfall in NIGMS award).

  42. Resubmission Novice said

    Writedit – I would your appreciate your insight on this situation. I resubmitted a renewal and my application was scored (likely not fundable). I expected the resubmission would score better than it did since I addressed all reviewer comments and had additional preliminary data. Regardless, I received a call from the SRO after my score was posted stating that I forgot to include a progress report section in the research strategy portion of the application. I did include that section in the first renewal. Apparently I misinterpreted the instructions and didn’t think I was suppose to include a progress report when resubmitting the renewal. I’m embarrassed – what a mistake. I guess the lack of a progress report wouldn’t have been caught ahead of review by NIH? Also, since my grant was scored can I assume that my scored was negatively impacted because I included only a preliminary data section and not a progress report describing work done on the specific aims of my previous award. Really appreciate your thoughts. Sincerely. Thanks.

    • writedit said

      It’s interesting that the SRO contacted you after your score was posted, since I’m not sure what the point of that would be – whereas I am surprised that he/she did not contact you at the time your application was being assigned for review – if nothing else to confirm that you intended to leave out the progress report and, if not, did you want to withdraw your application and resubmit (since this was your last chance to renew your R01 or whatever the mechanism is – your next submission will be a Type 1 A0 starting from scratch). Since you only say the score is “likely not fundable”, then you should certainly contact your PO, explain your omission, and offer to send him/her your progress report along with any rebuttal that might be necessary once you receive your summary statement (if reviewers had concerns other than the missing progress report, which did not allow them to fully assess your progress made). And, if this is the first renewal of your first R01 or if you are within 10 years of your first R01 or if this is your sole support, then also ask your PO if the NGRI policy (https://grants.nih.gov/ngri.htm) applies to you.

  43. rodger said

    Just received NOA from NHGRI for my R01. I used modular budget and got no budget cut. I am a new investigator but not an early stage investigator. Impact score 25, percentile 8.

    Effect Date Status Message
    07/19/2017 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
    03/13/2017 Pending administrative review. Refer any questions to Program Official or Grants Management Specialist.
    02/07/2017 Council review completed.
    10/06/2016 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
    10/06/2016 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
    06/20/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
    06/06/2016 Application entered into system

    • writedit said

      Congratulations and thank you so much for posting your timeline. The delay between pending administrative review and award prepared will hopefully be reassuring to many who have been anxiously waiting to hear about their applications. Best wishes for success with your research!

  44. Eliud said

    Dear writedit,
    During the last month my status at eRA commons went from “Council Review Complete”, to “Pending”, and now (07-25-17) is “Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist”. This is a SC2 SCORE (NIGMS). Do you think a NOA is underway? Approx date?

    • writedit said

      Yes – congratulations! You should have a notice soon (this week or next). Unless you have a specific question, there is no need to contact your GMS or PO (except to thank them). Best wishes for success with your research!

      • Eliud said

        Alright, thanks. Will do. And thank you for your posts, very useful.

    • deep said

      Every case is different but I have never seen Award prepared not pan out eventually, in a week or 10 days at the most.

  45. notanewbie said

    Thought I would also share some info. The below is for an R34 to NHLBI that was reviewed by a SEP.

    Effect Date Status Message
    07/27/2017 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
    06/14/2017 Pending administrative review. Refer any questions to Program Official or Grants Management Specialist.
    06/08/2017 Council review completed.
    03/20/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
    10/20/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
    10/17/2016 Application entered into system

    • writedit said

      Congratulations and thank you so much for sharing your timeline. Some viewing this site might be interested in your impact score as well, since few R34s are posted here. Best wishes for success in planning the trial and moving forward with your multi-site study.

      • notanewbie said

        Thank you, and also thank you for the invaluable service you provide in maintaining this site.

        Impact score was 34. Based on past experience, I did not really expect that to be good enough to be funded, but am grateful that it was.

        Any idea/sources of how often a funded R34 leads to a funded R01?

      • writedit said

        The R34 is an underutilized mechanism and one the ICs like PIs to use to avoid starting big trials that founder two years in. I know of an R01 multisite trial that scored competitively but was converted to R34 to cover the planning period before the trial started. ICs rarely fund the R34 if they do not intend to fund the R01 trial. However, if you cannot pull off the planning phase (cooperation among sites on IRB, SOPs, operations manual, etc.) or discover that the sample size will not be feasible to enroll (for whatever reason), then they would likely recommend that you not apply for the R01 – but you would find that out before you made the effort. The fact that they might have reached to fund your 34 probably means they like the trial concept underlying the planning phase – I assume your PO has been supportive.

  46. FinalYrESI said

    I want to thank writedit for this wonderful blog. After struggling for 2.5 years, I am sharing the timeline for a recently funded R01 (ESI status).

    07/26/2017 NoA, NIGMS
    07/20/2017 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
    05/31/2017 Council review completed.
    04/15/2017 JIT sent
    03/30/2017 JIT request
    02/11/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed. 15 % tile
    11/08/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending
    11/01/2016 A1 resubmission. Application entered into system

    • writedit said

      Congratulations and thank you so much for sharing your timeline – and your tale of perseverance. Best wishes for success with your research.

  47. NSI said

    Hi Writedit, I submitted a new R01 in Feb 2017 as a new investigator and got a score in the grey zone in June. Have talked with the PO and was notified that it is hard to tell due to the unclear FY2018 budget. He suggested a resubmission in Nov. Recently, I got a JIT email from NIH to request Other Support to be sent to eRA Commons and also the PO in two days. Since this request is before the council meeting (September), I am wondering whether this is normal and whether this indicates that I have a chance to be funded? Sincerely, Thank you!

    • writedit said

      I can’t tell if you mean the PO sent a request for JIT or if eRA Commons sent a request. If it came generically from the NIH, it is the automated request that everyone receives. You can ignore the automated request, but you could check with the PO to be sure, if you have any question as to whether he wants it now. Even if it is a real JIT request, no matter what, you would not receive an award until the end of 2017 or more likely 2018, especially if there is a problem getting the budget passed due to debt ceiling and tax reform negotiations, so the timing of the request before Council does not suggest anything about the likelihood or timing of funding.

      • NSI said

        Thanks! Actually, the request comes from the PO’s assistant. She wants the update in eRA Commons and also the copies to her and PO. So, I am kindly confused. Sincerely, Thank you very much for your response!

      • writedit said

        This is good news – not an automated request, so they are working to get you on the paylist (for the IC Director to consider funding – not all applications on the paylist receive awards). And it is not unusual for them to request JIT before Council meets, especially if your application is on the list they plan to send to Council for electronic approval en bloc in advance of the meeting. You should continue with the November application preparation, though, since nothing is guaranteed, and you may not know for several months still (so your PO does not want you to miss a cycle waiting).

  48. question said

    Our NIDDK R01 scored a 4 percentile as an ESI. We received a pre-award letter in July, but as yet remain to receive a Notice of Award. We requested the award start 8/1. I understand this can take a while… but is this common?

    • writedit said

      This year, it is not surprising, since NIDDK (and the rest of the NIH) has been scrambling to make most of their awards (for the entire FY) starting in mid-July, due to the budget delays. Your start date is not an expiration date, and you will definitely have your Notice before the end of the FY – hopefully before the end of August. If you need to start spending now, you can set up an account for pre-award spending since you are within 90 days of award.

  49. NewPI said

    When does council meet for PARs at NIA?

    • writedit said

      There is only one Council meeting, and NACA next meets on Sept 26-27. However, assuming you are on the paylist that went to Council for approval (your PO can tell you this), and unless you have a clearly competitive score, you still won’t know about funding until after the federal budget passes, which probably won’t be for some time still. If you want to gauge when your PO might have news, watch for when the President signs an omnibus spending bill into law (though actual spending activity by ICs is typically delayed another 4-6 weeks after this).

  50. PA said

    After a long wait, the status of my R01 recently changed from “council review completed” to “pending” (in a yellow box). What exactly does this mean? Any idea of how long we should expect to wait before the next step?

    • writedit said

      This means they have begun the administrative review of your application in preparation for an award. Your PO or GMS will let you know if they have any questions, but barring any unanticipated issues, you should be receiving good news in the weeks ahead (definitely before Sept 30).

  51. CA said

    I submitted an F31 award last December, and since March 2017, the status has been “SRG Review Completed”. The status changed today to “Pending”. As opposed to others who typically saw this status change after “council review completed”, I’m wondering what “pending” means in this case… “pending” what?

    • writedit said

      Fellowship applications do not go to Council – they are just discussed internally at the IC. Your status changed to “Pending” because they are doing an administrative review in preparation for a possible award (assuming no issues arise & money is available). You can check with your PO for confirmation and to see if they need anything from you.

      >

  52. Needhelp! said

    I received a impact score of 20 (no percentile provided; March 20, 2017) for my R21 submission to NIAAA. Does anyone have any idea where this score falls into the fundable range?

    I have contacted my PO after council meeting (May 3, 2017), but…no response….after 2 weeks, I emailed him again…Finally, he emailed me back, but he did not know the budget allocation for R21 yet. And I waited for additional two months, and emailed him again (July 6, 2017)..but no response….so far. Now, I can see that NIAAA started giving the R21 awards from this August.

    Please advise me whether I should contact the PO again or not.

    • writedit said

      No, you don’t need to contact your PO until Congress passes a budget (December or later). Your award is for FY18, not FY17 (which ends on Saturday), and no paylines will be known until the NIAAA knows what its appropriation will be, which won’t happen until the federal budget is signed into law. If Congress can keep the increase in NIH funding they have proposed, your score should be promising – but a lot can happen between now and Dec.

      • Needhelp! said

        Thank you so so so much for your response !!!

        I just want to confirm again about the FY 2018.

        Here is the timeline of my R21 application.

        11/15/2016 Application entered into system
        11/23/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending.
        03/07/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed.
        05/03/2017 Council review completed.

        As you can see, I submitted my application in November, 2016. So, I thought my award is for FY2017.

  53. writedit said

    I am so sorry – yes, I misread the SRG date as when you submitted. This is an FY17 application. However, if you have not heard from your PO at this point (and have not been asked for JIT), then you should assume you are not receiving an award. You might look around NIAAA to see if another PO would be appropriate for your science, since this PO should have been more responsive, given your score. If this is the best person for your science, then later next week (after FY changes), I would suggest you call to have a discussion about the R21 – where the payline ended up, what you could do to get the score in funding range (based on what he heard at study section).

    • Needhelp! said

      I have been asked for JIT. But, that was an automated notification from the NIH (era-notify@mail.nih.gov), but from my PO. I guess I am not receiving an award then.

      Thank you for your help and great advice. It helped me a lot.

      • Ds said

        Needhelp
        Dont lose hope. Sometime PO may not ask for JIT. He may ask for updated JIT. I hope you submitted your JIT in response to automated notification. Good Luck.

      • writedit said

        If it weren’t September 28th, I would agree, but all awards must be processed by tomorrow, so the PO or GMS would have asked for updated JIT earlier, even if they weren’t sure whether an award would be issued (they need to have the JIT processed in advance of any last-minute funding decision, and the eRA Commons status would indicate if that had started already).

      • Needhelp! said

        Thank you. Yes, I have submitted my JIT.

        I just emailed to my PO. Surprisingly, he emailed me back this time.

        He sent me the following email.
        “The score is usually effective for 2 years. The application will be considered for an award whenever funds are available during this period. At the same time, you can also choose to resubmit it as a new application.”

        Does it sound promising?

      • writedit said

        To be honest, this is a rather odd response. You should definitely resubmit. All applications remain active beyond their submission FY, apparently 2 years, before they are administratively withdrawn. However, unless your PO is actively pushing for your application to be funded, or a special priority for your particular science arises in the coming months, it will go to the back of the line after all the better-scoring applications for all of FY18 are funded (& NIAAA then sees what funds are leftover, if any). The main reason that I know of an IC going back to a prior FY award is if a subsequent resubmission scores worse, so the IC goes back and funds the better-scored application (assuming the science is of special interest to them – something conveyed by the PO). You want to be sure the science is a priority for NIAAA (ie, POwould go to bat for a score of 20 vs que sera sera), and it would be nice for you to know the general tone of the study section discussion in preparing your new application, so I would still suggest calling the PO rather than emailing again, since you seem unlikely to get an insightful response electronically (and he may not want to put some thoughts into an email).

      • Ds said

        Needhelp
        I agree with writedit this is a odd response. If they are not funding impact score 20 what are they funding? There has to be some explanation may be this is not priority area of research or some administrative issues like IRB, Animal etc.
        You need some clarification from PO about their decision not to fund your application. You submitted in response to RFA or parent R21?

  54. Needhelp! said

    Yes, I submitted in response to RFA.

    I know someone who got an R21 award from NIAAA with a score 25 two years ago. So, I was so excited about my score. But, nothing happened.
    No…I am very frustrated. If I can’t get funded with impact score 20..then…..what should I do …..

    However, thank you for both your advice! I really appreciate it.
    I will contact him again to get more information.

    Thank you.

    • Ds said

      Needhelp
      Sorry about your situation. As you applied in response to RFA there are possibilities : 1) your research area is not responsive to the RFA; 2) there can be many other application with similar score and they have pick few broad appliactions to fund with limited money.
      Few years back I applied for RFA and scored 22 for RO1 application. However it was not funded. Reason there was another application similar to mine with 19 impact score.
      RFAs are tricky. I am sure your science is excellent as you scored 20. Good Luck

    • writedit said

      Well, RFA awards are not decided based on solely on score – if program sees an interesting approach they’d like to support, they will fund applications out of order (this is true of all applications to an extent, but especially RFAs & PARs). I assume, too, that only a prescribed and limited number of awards were going to be made, in which case general paylines do not apply. If you do not have funding from NIAAA currently, then I would still suggest you check to see if there is another PO (other than RFA PO) who is appropriate for your science and communicate with them before submitting. The RFA SRG discussion may or may not be useful for general submission, since there would have been very specific research objectives listed. Now, it could be that the RFA PO is hoping for more $ for his program (in which case he might be able to make additional awards) – but again, this seems highly unusual and would not be clear until after the federal budget passes (not before December and possibly not until next year).

      • Needhelp! said

        Thank you for your advice.

        I am resubmitting a new application. However, if my new application gets a score higher than 20, would it badly affect the chance of my previous A1 grant being awarded?

      • writedit said

        Not necessarily. I know a PI whose subsequent submission was not discussed but still had the prior (essentially the same) application funded. If your PO likes the science, he/she can advocate for the application with a score of 20,

  55. Me said

    Hi Writedit, My R01 received a priority score of 42, 27th percentile (NICHD). I am an ESI/NI. Any ideas what my chances are? I guess I am not hopeful of funding.

    Thanks.

    • writedit said

      Not great, since the Next Generation Researchers Initiative is likely not to expand funding beyond the 25th percentile, and the NIH appropriation (which will determine level of ESI funding) will not be known until December at the earliest, so you should plan to resubmit no matter what. When you receive your summary statement, you can talk with your PO about the SRG discussion and his/her recommendations in planning your revised application. A score like that can mean that there are weaknesses in the approach that could be fixed (and hence improve your score), but you’ll know whether the concerns were about the approach (fixable) or the significance (more difficult to fix).

      • Me said

        Just what I thought. Thanks

  56. Neurite said

    Got 36 on K08 A1 resubmission. Down from 50 (A0). The score is not great but appears to be in the gray zone according to my last discussion with my PO in April (grants scored < 30 were definitely funded). Since the council won't meet until January, should I assume that I won't know the fundable score until then? I already prepare to resubmit (an A0).

    • writedit said

      You can ask your PO for confirmation, but I would say so. The 36 A1 will remain under consideration even after the next A0 is scored, so you have nothing to lose. You would want the PO’s input on the SRG discussion to know how to craft the new application in any case, so you should touch base anyway.

      • Neurite said

        Thanks. PO replied and seemed to imply that it is a borderline score. He wants to wait until I have the Summary Statement.

      • Neurite said

        By the way any idea about the funding outlook for NINDS in 2018?

      • writedit said

        It should be as good as if not better than FY17, but that will become more clear as budget bill is worked out in the months ahead.

  57. K01 applicant NIDA said

    I am still waiting to hear about my K01 who was scored with 24 in September. Today I received an email that starts like this: “Dear NIH Funding Recipient:
    Have you heard of the NIH Loan Repayment Programs (LRPs)? Each year, these programs help to repay educational loan debt of thousands of researchers across this country! If you meet the basic LRP eligibility criteria, you may be eligible to be a recipient of many benefits of this program!

    Should I be optimistic?

    • writedit said

      No, the LRP is a separate program altogether for MDs to receive some medical school loan repayment in exchange for research time. The LRP notice goes out to everyone (with MD listed & eligible graduation date, I presume). You will not know for sure about your K01 until the federal budget passes later this year or next year.

  58. Waitinginanticipation said

    Hi writedit,

    I recently received my R21 score for an application submitted to NCI. The impact score was 30; percentile was 12. Should I be optimistic for finding or should I start planning for a resubmission?

    Thank you

    • writedit said

      You can ask your PO if you should resubmit. With a 12th percentile, you could be in range, but NCI will not know for sure until the federal budget passes. I suspect your PO will suggest that you prepare a resubmission for insurance, but you can see what he/she says first.

    • YJ said

      Per my recent conversation with NCI PO, the R21 payline is currently 7%.

  59. Lili said

    This is bit different. Anyone has ever applied to a OT1 pre-application for the SPARC program (NBIB)? We did like August 1, 2017. We were supposed to get a response whether we were encouraged to submit a full application-OT2 within 4 weeks. It has been 10 weeks. The program manager told us to basically wait. Anyone has any insight on this?

    • writedit said

      For a program with an Other Transaction award like this, you really just need to wait to hear from the POs. Not hearing is not necessarily bad news – it is easiest for them to say “no” quickly. Because the OT2 portion is also very flexible, they could be waiting for more insight on what will happen with the federal budget before accepting applications for that funding. Your OT2 application due date will be based on when you hear about the OT1 proposal, so you don’t need to worry about “missing” a deadline … but if you would like to submit your science elsewhere, you can discuss this with the PO. In the meantime, you can certainly keep moving the science forward, whether for an OT2 application or for other NIH or industry funding.

  60. MR said

    My K22 NCI application received an impact score of 30, does anyone know whether my application has a chance to be funded? do we know what were the last impact score funded for previous rounds of application? Thank you so much.

    • writedit said

      When you receive your summary statement, check with your PO about how this would have fared in FY17 and whether you should resubmit. Having the summary statement in hand first is important. Even if NCI was not typically funding K22 applications up to a score of 30, the reviewer comments and/or your science could affect whether they might try to fund your application, assuming it is close. Plus, if your PO recommends resubmission, you can then discuss strategy for the next application and response to reviewers based on what the PO heard during the discussion.

      • MR said

        Thank you.

  61. Charm3 said

    This has been very helpful. I just received my R01 score from NHLBI and got a 25%. As an ESI, I would have been within payline for 2017. My PO said that we have to wait for the 2018 budget to see if the payline is the same. Do you have any predictions for the budget appropriations for 2018? I am really hoping it stays the same at least.

    Thanks!

    • writedit said

      We’ll have to see what happens with the NIH appropriation as the budget and tax cut bills take shape, but currently, the NIH is on track to do as well if not a bit better for FY18, in which case you should be fine (especially with any increased ESI resources under NGRI, though how this will play out is unclear as well). However, no one will know for sure until the FY18 budget is signed into law, so your best clues will come from monitoring how these bills (& NIH in particular) fare in Congress. You can ask your PO in the meantime if you should resubmit – a “yes” doesn’t mean that your 25th percentile won’t get funded though (just an abundance of caution as insurance).

      • Charm3 said

        Thank you so much for your response. I have been reading a lot about budget and it looks promising for NIH. I don’t have my summary statement but will talk to my PO once I have it. Just an FYI, I actually got an R56 last year with this R01 submission, so my PO really knows me by now (female minority, going up for tenure this fiscal year and last year as ESI). Again, thank you for all these info.

      • writedit said

        Aha – in light of all this additional information, I would guess that you will be okay, assuming there is nothing dire in the summary statement (this is what your PO probably wants to confirm) and that the anticipated NIH appropriation stays intact during the federal budget process.

      • Charm3 said

        Just wanted to let you know that my PO told me that I am getting my R01. NHLBI posted their 2018 payline and it made it! Thank you for all your knowledge. This website is really very helpful!

      • writedit said

        Woohoo! Thanks for the update – congratulations and best wishes for success with your research!

  62. Emily said

    Hi,
    My R21 to the NICHD ( NRCS study section) was scored with an impact factor of 26 and in the 14th percentile. I don’t have my comments yet but am curious if you think this will be funded
    Thx!!

    • writedit said

      Hmm – very hard to say, especially without knowing what will happen with the FY18 budget. When you get your summary statement, check in with your PO and ask if you should resubmit (PO won’t know about funding likelihood due to budget uncertainty – might tell you whether it would have been funded in FY17 – if so, good news). He/she might say yes, you should resubmit, just so you have some insurance (the 14th percentile application can still be funded even after resubmission scored).

      • Emily said

        A new update on this grant is that recently the PO asked me to change the title before council meets–what do you think that means?

      • writedit said

        Hmm. This is a new one for me. Council reviews the quality of peer review, so I am not sure why Council would care what the title was – but the key is getting your application on the list sent to Council for approval (that is, applications that the IC can consider for funding, pending IC Director award decisions & appropriation levels). I assume your PO wants a stronger title that clarifies or amplifies the significance of the work to be done to ensure the IC Director puts your application on the paylist (for consideration, again – not a guarantee) before it is sent to Council for approval. Clearly your PO believes in your science, which is great, so hopefully the two of you came up with a title that will sell your research to those deciding which proposals should be considered for funding.

      • SaG said

        My guess is that your title could possibly feed some “trolls”. , http://www.sciencemag.org/careers/2017/06/congress-says-your-work-wasteful-now-what

        Or perhaps they want want you to change a word to make it clear that your proposed work closely aligns with the goals of the RFA.

  63. Jim said

    I just received a K99 score of 31, no percentile, from NIDA. Any idea if this is fundable, and should I consider resubmitting for the November 10th resubmission deadline??

    • writedit said

      After you receive your summary statement, you’ll need to check with your PO about the score. You can’t resubmit until you have your summary statement in any case, and you don’t want to submit without enough time to address the reviewer concerns (the same reviewers will know you ignored them if you do). If you have new publications since the review (as rationale for quick resubmission), let your PO know that, too.

  64. DenDritic said

    Thank you for this exciting blog. My question regards the impact of NGRI. Will this result in official published paylines of 25% for ESI? (all subject to budget of course). Or will this be a discretionary case-by-case review? And has there been an impact for FY17 grants?

    • writedit said

      The final policy is still being worked out, but ICs will have latitude in how they implement NGRI (so proportion of ESI to established PI funding rates reaches a desired level) vs an across the NIH 25th percentile payline for ESi applicants. It’s being phased in, too, I believe, as increasing $ levels are shifted into NGRI.

      • DenDritic said

        Thank you for the helpful reply. The original NIH announcements generated hope that we could see, say, NCI funding 25% ESI R01s but I guess the NGRI might just end up increasing paylines by couple percentage points in “tough” ICs..

      • writedit said

        Yep. The long-term goal might be a 25th percentile payline for all ESI, per the initial announcement, but the NIH cannot dictate this for all ICs (some would have to significantly cut funding to established PIs and programmatic priorities to accommodate that payline), so each will implement their own thresholds to raise the proportion of ESI applicants funded.

  65. DenDritic said

    Thank you for the insightful reply. I hope I am not becoming annoying by persisting but here is what I do not understand. In the rationale for NGRI it was clearly stated that 193 (I believe the number was) ESI R01s </equal 25% in FY2016 were not funded, hence they aimed for 200 extra such awards in 2017. It would seem that they are willing to cover most of that territory. Moreover, and this perhaps is in contrast to what I read earlier in the blog, presumably the 200 will not be equally divided among ICs: for example, NHLBI ALREADY has a 25% published ESI payline. Although I understand a blanket 25% payline is not to be expected any time soon, should we routinely expect to see NCI PO's delving into the 15-25% territory for programmatic interest?

    • SaG said

      It depends on how much pressure The Lords of NIH can effectively put on the Emperor of NCI.

    • writedit said

      Also, I asked an NIH PO in September about the status of NGRI guidelines/implementation, and he said everything was still being worked out. I am sure the NIH will eventually announce how this will work, but until then, just assume the descriptions put out initially are concepts rather than concrete.

  66. NIA-ADRD said

    Thanks for very informative blog! I submitted my R01 to NIA (Alzheimer’s Disease) have recently received a priority score (41) and percentile (32%). As an ESI, the published payline is 33%. What do you think of my chance of funding? Thanks!

    • writedit said

      Since the FY18 paylines should be about the same as FY17, you could be okay – but this depends on what happens with the federal budget in the months ahead (eg, Congress could start reducing agency budgets to pay for tax cuts). Your PO will not know anything about funding until the federal budget is closer to completion, but when you receive your summary statement, check in with him/her about whether you should resubmit.

      • NIA-ADRD said

        Thank you very much for your quick response. I guess this can be a long wait. I will follow up when I have any news!

  67. andreapais said

    Hi Writedit, we received a priority score of 30 on our SBIR to NIAID. They just posted the interim Paylines for 2018 today. Given that the interim payline is set at 30 which is down 2 points from 32 in 2017, How likely are we still to receive an award? And when do they generally begin to start sending out NOAs?

    • writedit said

      The payline includes applications with an impact score of 30, so you should be fine. You can ask your PO for an idea of timing for the NoA – maybe not for your start date, but that’s not an issue. Now, if your application still needs to go to Council (can’t tell if you were just reviewed this fall or last summer), then you won’t be looking at an award until next year – but on time for your start date.

      • RA said

        Hi! Thanks for your quick response. We submitted on April 5 2017 and went through the October council. We submitted with a start date of Dec 5th. On the status is said council review completed but the application says pending.

      • writedit said

        Aha – that means they are processing your award now, so you should be in good shape for a Dec 5th start, but you can check with your PO to be sure (should probably check in with him/her if you have not done so in a while).

      • RA said

        HI! Thanks so much for the response. We haven’t yet got any JIT email though. When do you they send this? Is it after NOA?

      • writedit said

        Before – so you should get a request soon. If you need any IACUC or IRB approvals, you need to have those in order first.

  68. WH said

    Hi wirtedit,

    I am just curious whether it is possible to postpone the NOA of an R01 application?

    Basically, my situation is: as an ESI, I submitted my first R01 (to NHLBI with a proposed start date of April 1, 2018) this June and got a good score (11%) in Oct. My PO told me that although 2018 budget is not finalized yet, it is very likely that I will get funded. After submitting the R01, I also submitted a DP2 in Sept, on a totally different topic. Now my problem is if I get a R01 before DP2, I will automatically get disqualified for the DP2. For the DP2, I won’t know the score until the end of next March, and the funding decision would be in next summer. Thus, I am curious is it possible to postpone the start date of this potential R01 for 6-7 months? If so, may I know how should I approach my PO about this issue?

    Thanks so much!!

    • writedit said

      Although the FY18 budget may not be settled before next March, your ESI 11th percentile means you could be processed for an award under the continuing resolution. I would suggest you simply talk with your NHLBI PO now about your situation. It could be that the PO can delay your Council review until May, or it could be that you would need to go to Council in Feb and then have the NoA itself delayed. I know the activation of awards can be delayed (such as when a PI knows he/she is moving and does not want an award to start – with the cooperation of the original awardee institution and IC – until the move is complete), but I am not sure how the ICs handle NoA timing requests. Talking with your PO now will offer the most flexibility – and your PO will know about your DP2, so there is no reason to delay. Since the science is different, you don’t need to worry about NHLBI “reconsidering” your R01 if you have enough FTEs to work on both awards (if you don’t have enough FTE, this would be another discussion).

    • writedit said

      Actually, sorry, I just went back to read the wording on DP2 eligibility: “Applicants may submit or have an R01 (or other equivalent) grant application pending concurrently with their NIH Director’s New Innovator Award application that does not overlap substantially with their New Innovator Award application. However, if that pending grant is awarded prior to the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award, then the applicant is no longer eligible to receive the New Innovator Award.” You can still talk with your NHLBI PO, but I suspect they will not want to interfere with the “spirit” of the DP2. That is, you applied for and should (based on normal NIH timing) receive the R01 before the DP2 can be awarded, which the NHLBI PO may not be able or want to violate in this situation. Of course, the good news is that you will receive funding no matter what.

  69. EH said

    I got a 27 on my first K01 submission at NIMH, but have not gotten summary statements yet. Is there anyway to tell with a K01 about likelihood of funding this round? Or just have to wait until summary statements? Thanks!

    • writedit said

      Your PO can give you an idea of funding likelihood after seeing your summary statement. Be patient just a little longer …

  70. RA said

    Hi, We just received a JIT email from NIAID for our SBIR application. The request asks for among others a statement of intent (line of credit). I am not able to get in touch with anyone at NIAID perhaps due to the holidays but I was hoping someone here could answer my question: Does a revolving business loan qualify for the line of credit request? Could you give me suggestions on best programs to approach for establishing lines of credit for SBIRs? Is there a minimum amount that we need to be approved for?

    • writedit said

      I truly do not know, but your PO or the SBIR help desk can and would be happy to help you with this, including the best approach to take in setting up a line of credit. The small business program in general is very helpful, so don’t hesitate to ask there.

  71. f31app84 said

    Hello I received a 12 on my F31 – Scored in July. Was told not to resubmit but just wait. Any idea when this mess is gonna get sorted in congress?

    I have been told sometime in December in the best case scenario but that seems very unlikely. Now they are saying it could be as late as february or march? would that really delay all the f-31 award determinations until then?

    • writedit said

      The federal budget will take that long to sort out (til late Dec or next year), but I would expect your IC to process an F31 with such a good score in December or January (i.e., under the CR). Now, the NIH was very late in getting its CR funding even, so I expect this has delayed the Dec 1 awards (ie, Cycle 1 applications scoring well enough for CR funding) irrespective of the rest of the federal budget negotiations (or lack thereof). This still means you’ll still need to be patient for a little longer – but hopefully you won’t need to wait for Congress to get its act together.

  72. Sam said

    Dear Writedit,
    Can I submit my R01 application before the open date of a new FOA? My ESI expires on March 31st 2018. There is a new FOA recently announced whose open date is April 7th. I am wondering whether I can submit my application on or before March 31st for that FOA to have an ESI status. I would appreciate any comments.
    Thanks

    • writedit said

      Hmm. If you submit to grants.gov by March 31 (probably best a day or two before to ensure you can address any errors if needed and remain within the cut-off), your application will be flagged as ESI. However, if the FOA is not open for submissions until April 7, then you cannot submit to that FOA on March 31. You could contact the PO of the FOA to confirm the open date and describe your ESI situation to see if there is some way your application could be considered for the FOA. If not, then you should submit for the Feb 5 or March 5 parent R01 or another appropriate FOA open for submissions (this FOA PO or your current PO, if you have one, could give advice). The FOA indicates IC interest in the scientific area, so unless this is an RFA or other FOA with set-aside funds and a special review panel, you are no less likely to receive an award if you submit the application through another R01 FOA (ie, IC is interested in that topic, regardless of how it receives the application).

      Here is the ESI policy: The ESI status of the PD/PI(s), on any R01 Equivalent application will be determined at the time of submission. If the PD/PI(s) on the application is/are classified as ESI on the date the application is successfully submitted to Grants.gov, the application will be flagged as ESI and will receive special consideration during the review and funding process. If the application status does not correctly reflect the NI or ESI status on the day of submission, contact ESINIH@od.nih.gov

    • SaG said

      I don’t think grants.gov will let you submit an app before the open date of the FOA. Do you have any breaks in your career since your Ph.D. that might extend your ESI status for a month? (https://grants.nih.gov/policy/early-investigators/esi_extension_add.htm)

  73. BD said

    Very informative discussion group. Thanks for sharing!!!Could you please guide me how I can add a new question about my grant.

    From NIAID- R01 I got 12%. Pay line is 9%. I don’t have R01. This will be first one, but this is is MPI, where I am contact PI. But my Co-PI is established PI, so I lost ESI status.

    Fortunately my PO like our science and forwarded for Council meeting, I submitted JIT.

    My PO also suggested to resubmit ASAP.

    is there any hope will award this grant as forwarded for Council meeting?

    • writedit said

      Being on the list of applications sent to Council for approval does not mean you will receive an award … Council is saying that all applications on that list can be considered for awards – the Director of NIAID will decide which ones actually receive funding (Council always approves more applications than NIAID has money to fund). Also, all applications have the status update, Council review completed (including every application that is not funded) – I assume your PO said that your application was on the paylist, but if you think Council reviewed your application based on your eRA Commons status (Council review completed), then you cannot assume that you were on the paylist. Similarly, if you submitted JIT based on the eRA Commons request, then that does not mean anything – you need a request from your PO or GMS. If your PO requested the JIT, that is a good sign, but again, not a guarantee.

      Your PO is recommending that you resubmit for insurance, since he cannot guarantee funding. If your 12th percentile application is funded, the resubmission will be withdrawn … if the 12th percentile application is not funded, you have another chance with the resubmission, depending on the score. You only lose your ESI status if you receive an award (not just by applying), so right now, you still have your ESI status (assuming you are still within 10 years). If you do resubmit, you might consider applying as a sole PI (with your established PI as a senior investigator) so the application is reviewed and considered for funding as an ESI application (again, assuming you are still within 10 years).

      • BD said

        Thanks. Council meeting date is January 29. But era Common saying council review completed. I talked to PO about this. He again tole, My application is on pay list forwarded for council review.
        I heartily appreciate your feedback.

      • writedit said

        Aha – great. Council approves applications that need no further discussion en bloc electronically before the scheduled meeting, which is why your status changed before the meeting. This does not increase your chances of receiving an award but does mean it is possible for you to be considered for one.

  74. BD said

    Thanks. Then why my P.o. told he has nominated my grant for Selected pay line.

    • pom4pom said

      Hi,

      This discussion group is very useful.

      My study section is not listed on https://public.csr.nih.gov/StudySections/SpecialEmphasis/Pages/default.aspx website. When will the new study section list?

      Thanks NixieR

      On Wed, Jan 24, 2018 at 12:18 PM, Medical Writing, Editing & Grantsmanship wrote:

      > BD commented: “Thanks. Then why my P.o. told he has nominated my grant for > Selected pay line.” >

      • writedit said

        Rosters of any study section are not released until 30 days before the scheduled review date. If your SEP is scheduled to meet within the next month and is not listed, you can ask the SRO when the roster will be posted. If your SEP is not scheduled to meet within the next month, check again closer to the review date.

  75. Neurite said

    I have previously mentioned that I received a very borderline score on my A1 K08 submission. The Summary Statement is overall positive but mentioned multiple minor weaknesses. My PO has requested a “rebuttal” before the Council and suggested to hold off on a resubmission until the decision on this submission is more clear. Now the council meeting is just over. Should I wait for a week or two and shoot him an email?

    I am also wondering how soon the applicants receive the “rejection” email after the council meeting. Last time it was about a week for my A0.

    • writedit said

      You have a very good PO, if he tells you when you are not going to be funded. It is not NIH policy to send a “rejection” letter, so you are the exception rather than the rule. Most POs do not do this, and even then just for applicants with whom they have been directly communicating, such as in your case (vs the IC doing so as an internal policy).

      With regard to your K08, your PO should have a better idea of whether you are on the paylist after internal discussions that follow Council meeting (depends on IC with regard to timing). I am not sure when these might be scheduled, and since your PO seems to be so good about communicating with you, I would suggest you wait to hear from him. If you don’t hear from him in 2-3 weeks, then you could check in, but I am pretty sure he will be in touch when he has actionable news.

      • Neurite said

        Thanks. The “rejection” letter was sent out by IC, not my PO, but my PO is indeed very supportive. I will check with him in 2-3 weeks per your advice.

      • BD said

        Usually how long it takes to know the status of your grant after council meeting.

      • writedit said

        Council does not make funding decisions – they just approve applications for funding, with the IC Director deciding which applications on the Council-approved paylist will receive awards. Timing for award decisions depends on the application score and federal budget status. If you are well within payline (ie, below 6-10th percentile, depending on IC) or applying to an RFA, you should hear not too long after (weeks), since the money is there (based on 90% of FY17 appropriation). Applications that are likely to get paid but depend on the IC appropriation won’t be decided until the federal budget passes (so no official update for weeks to months later, depending on when the IC gets its FY18 appropriation).

      • BD said

        Thanks for your information. My PO told Council approved my grant. it was 12%. Not sure how long take to get NoA.!!!!

      • Neurite said

        The status of my A1 was changed to “pending” this morning. I have not received a request for JIT yet. Should I be optimistic?

      • writedit said

        If it went from Council Review Completed to Pending, yes – it means your application is being processed (so your JIT request should come soon). The process might not be fast, but at least something is happening.

      • BD said

        Thanks for your information. My PO told Council approved my grant. it was 12%. Not sure how long take to get NoA.!!!! But today morning I checked, it shows Council review completed. Should I call GMS.

      • Neurite said

        Yes it was changed from Council Review Completed to Pending! Indeed, I just received the JIT request as your expected! I am hoping to share my experience/timeline soon once I receive the NOA.

      • Neurite said

        My application (K08 at NINDS) was funded! The start date is March 1st (next week)! It is amazing how fast it was processed. The Council met on the first this month! Thank you all for the informative comments. My timeline is as follows:

        02/19/2018 NOA (Start date: 03/01/2018)
        02/16/2018 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
        02/08/2018 JIT submitted
        02/05/2018 Getting an email from GMS requesting JIT.
        02/02/2018 Pending administrative review. Refer any questions to Program Official or Grants Management Specialist.
        02/02/2018 Council review completed.
        12/13/2017 Rebuttal submitted per PO’s request (Summary Statement was overall positive but mentioned multiple minor weaknesses, mostly technical. I was able to more or less address all comments).
        09/27/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed. Impact Factor: 36 (no percentile). Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
        07/19/2017 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
        07/11/2017 Application entered into system

        05/25/2017 Getting an email from IC notifying me that the application was not selected for funding.
        05/19/2017 Council review completed.
        03/03/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed. Impact Factor: 50 (no percentile). Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
        10/20/2016 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
        10/12/2016 Application entered into system

      • writedit said

        Woohoo! Congratulations and thank you for posting your timeline. That is fast turnaround, but I’m glad it didn’t drag on for months while we await a final federal budget (especially after you had persisted for so long as it is). I hope this means NINDS (& other ICs) recognize that career development awards can’t linger indefinitely (especially since they are not the big money awards, so not as big a fiscal risk). Best wishes for success with your project and your career in academic research!

  76. BD said

    Thanks for your information and this forum is very helpful. On January 30 ( Last week), My PO told Council approved my grant. it was 12%, NIAID, R01. Not sure how long it will take to get JIT and NoA from GMS. I have already submitted JIT in December ( normal JIT from NIH) not from GMS.But today morning I checked, it shows Council review completed. Should I call GMS. Kindly advice.

  77. SaG said

    Council Approval does not mean it will be funded. Current NIAID payline is 9%/13%….PI/ESI. Are you an ESI?

    • BD said

      Thanks SaG. I am PI but not ESI ( as my collaborator is an established PI), but I don’t have R01. This is my First R01. My PO nominated my grant for Selected Pay line. I talked to him last week, Council approved, but I have to wait for GMS JIT. So how long it will take ?
      Should you advice, I will call GMS. Thanks for your

      • SaG said

        You can send in the JIT info any time through ERA Commons. The real issue is when NIH will get a full year budget. As it stands now money runs out Thursday night.

      • BD said

        https://www.niaid.nih.gov/research/grants-fiscal-year-timeline

        Still till today my eRA common showing Council review completed.
        From this forum, I found, for others changed to Pending status.
        So Should I contact to GMS ( Grant Management Service) to know about my status and when I expect mail from them.

      • writedit said

        You can watch your eRA Commons account for status changes. You do not need to contact the GMS or PO. They will contact you when they need to. You should be prepared to wait and not see a change in status immediately, so don’t worry if nothing happens soon.

  78. AR said

    What does it mean when the council designates a grant application as being a “low program priority”? Does that mean it definitely won’t be funded even thought it received an impact score within the payline?

    • writedit said

      Possibly. The IC Director, not Council, makes final funding decisions, but some applications scoring well within the payline (even the 1st percentile) do not receive awards if the Director feels the IC is already spending sufficient $ in that area, is already funding several similar projects, is not seeking to fund research in that area, etc.. This could happen if an IC had an RFA, and one of the unfunded applications is submitted as a new R01 that scores well (IC has just invested several million dollars in multiple awards so does not want to immediately make more awards in the same field). ICs have limited dollars, so well-designed, competitively scored research is not guaranteed an award if the IC believes its funding is better directed to other projects. Usually this is avoided through a conversation with the PO (and/or by checking RePORTER for recent or current funding of multiple projects in the same area, absence of funding by the IC in that area, etc.). I would certainly hope that no competitive application specifically encouraged by a PO (with exceptions such as the post-RFA resubmission noted above) is ultimately not funded due to low programmatic priority (if so, conversation with the PO is in order).

  79. LMM said

    With the budget deal passed this morning, will NIH be able to set paylines for FY18 now or will it still need to wait until March, when the details of the appropriations are hammered out and signed into law?

  80. Vic said

    Hi Writedit, my R01 (A0) was reviewed in June 2017 and scored at 17%. I am an ESI. Payline for FY2017 was 25% (NIA). The council meeting was held in October. Since 2018 paylines will not likely be known till later this year, I still put in a resubmission (A1). However, the A1 got scored in Feb 2018 at 40%. Will the A1 score override the A0 score? I am worried that my A0 at 17% might have been fundable later this year (going by last year’s paylines), but once the A1 is scored, will the A0 score still be considered for funding? Please advise!

    • writedit said

      The A1 does not knock the A0 out of contention. Wait until you get your summary statement to get in touch with your PO (and we all need to wait for federal budget in any case), since that is when he/she will be able to give you the clearest guidance. You will probably need to provide a rebuttal for one or both reviews, but NIA can fund the A0 on its own merit despite the A1 score (even A1s that are not discussed do not prevent competitive A0s from receiving awards).

  81. Questioning said

    Two questions regarding programmatic review and funding decisions post-Council: 1) is there a predetermined percentile (e.g., up to 25%) that gets discussed, whether ESI or not? 2) do grants in which there is a stark dissent in scores but overall within range (say, 2 reviewers give 1-2’s, third gives 5) get routinely discussed?

    • writedit said

      On #1, no – not uniform across ICs, and not uniform from cycle to cycle. The IC will send Council a longer list of applications under consideration for funding than can receive awards, but internal discussions are used to select and rank applications above the payline, with the IC Director making all final decisions.

      On #2, you should discuss the scoring and critique discrepancy with your PO, who is the one who would advocate for your application at internal IC discussions. This is not automatically done – only if a PO pushes for a select pay application with a robust rebuttal that addresses the discrepancy. However, generally the Resume & Summary of Discussion notes which set of reviewers prevailed during the discussion. In any case, you would want to talk with your PO, who likely attended the review meeting (or knows a colleague who did), to be sure you know how best to revise the application for resubmission.

  82. GD said

    Dear Writedit. I am an established investigator and my NCI R01 renewal (A1) was scored 17%. I also have a dual assignment for this application at NIA. Since the payline for NIA was much higher (19% last year), I was wondering if it was common to request the application to be moved to NIA, in the small hope it could get funded here, and how to proceed. IN advance, thank you!

    • writedit said

      If you were just reviewed, you will need to wait for your summary statement and then talk with the NCI PO (or do so now, if you already have the summary statement). NCI needs to determine whether they want to consider your application for funding before relinquishing it to a secondary IC (this is not automatic – and nothing you can do). You should talk with your PO at NIA, also, to determine if they would accept it (this is not automatic, either). If NCI wants to give it up and NIA wants to fund it, the NCI PO will take steps to make this happen. However, NIA is only paying that high for Alzheimer’s applications, not general aging applications (these are down at the 9th percentile), so I am not sure how an Alzheimer’s application could be assigned to NCI as the primary IC.

      • GD said

        I see. Thank you, that is very helpful.

  83. Bridesmaid said

    This discussion has been very useful; thank you! I just received my R01 score (32) and percentile (18th), first submission. NHLBI payline is 15th but for ESI is 25th. I am an ESI. My question is, as an ESI, does this automatically bumps our application into funding approval (as we’re above 25th) or could there be programmatic or Council decisions that could cut us out? I received the JIT request in the system, but still waiting for summary statement to talk to PO. Council meeting is in May.

    • writedit said

      Congratulations on the positive outcome of your first submission! You should be fine. Your ESI 18th percentile means you will be considered for funding pending an administrative review (unlikely to alter your funding chances, but nothing is final until the NoA is issued). Your PO or GMS should contact you closer to the Council meeting date (could be before or after, so don’t panic if it isn’t until after). When you get your summary statement, you could contact the PO to see if he/she needs anything from you in the meantime.

  84. HRoark said

    Received impact score of 44 from an RFA through the NIDCR. Because it is an RFA, there is no percentile score. Summary statement is still a month away, but does it make sense to contact the PO and ask about the possibility of funding? It seems from the above discussions that RFAs appear to operate under a different set of rules than Parent awards, and thus while I’m not optimistic about funding (they said there were only going to fund 3-4), based on programmatic objectives, there could be a slight chance. Am I misguided? Thank you.

    • writedit said

      There is a slight chance, since this is an RFA, and program will want to pick the science in which they are most interested. However, there is no need to contact your PO until you have your summary statement, because that is what the PO will need to wait for to comment on your chances (both your summary statement and those of the other applications submitted to the RFA). At that point, you can ask if you should resubmit the work as a regular R01, too – and what suggestions the PO might have for improving the proposal (based on summary statement & discussion).

  85. Jeff said

    Dear Write Edit. I just received a 30 impact score (no percentile listed) on an NHLBI R21 that we submitted in response to RFA-HL-12-004. I can’t seem to find any info on payline for an R21 at NHLBI for FY2018. Any thoughts on chances of this being funded?

    • writedit said

      R21s are as or more competitive as R01s, but with an RFA, it depends as much on what program is looking for in the science as the score. When you get your summary statement, you should check in with the PO to see if he/she needs anything from you (ie, rebuttal to the critiques) and if you should resubmit as a regular R21 or R01 (and if so, what advice does the PO have based on the summary statement & discussion).

  86. NCI_K08_2018 said

    HI. This is a great blog to find fellow researchers struggling with similar questions in this semi-transparent system. I applied for a NCI K08 award and here is my timeline.

    Feb 2017- A0 application

    June 2017- Impact score 30

    Oct 2017- Council review completed. Summary Statement Discussed with PO. Who said she cannot promise anything, doesnt have the budget for 2018. Reapply to be safe.

    Nov 2017- A1 resubmission

    March 2018- Impact score 25.

    These are my questions.

    1. My PO had said that a score of 30 was in the gray zone, so is there still a chance that the A0 will be funded.

    2. If there are other NCI K08 applicants here who already got their notice of award, can you share if this is a fundable impact score?

    Thanks.

    • writedit said

      Since the A1 scored even better than the A0, your PO could push to have the A0 funded – but it could be that all gray zone applications will be decided as part of cycle 3 awards, in which case both the A0 and A1 would be considered at the same time (ie, you wouldn’t get funded earlier via either route). However, your PO should know more after March 23, assuming we finally have a federal budget signed into law for FY18.

      • NCI_K08_2018 said

        Thanks, have a few questions-

        1. What is cycle 3.

        2. Should I contact my PO now or after March 23rd budget.

        3. For my A1, the council review is in June. So I am confused about whether I should apply for a different A0 for the June 12th deadline.

        Thanks

      • writedit said

        1. Cycle 3 are applications submitted in Sept-Dec (third application cycle of the year). Your A1 was submitted in November, so falls in cycle 3.

        2. There is nothing that your PO can tell you now. You should contact your PO after March 23 (or whenever the federal budget passes) – or after you receive your summary statement. Probably easiest just to wait to contact your PO until you have your summary statement.

        3. You will not need to wait until the June 24-25 NCAB meeting to know whether to apply again. Your PO will know before then whether you should plan to submit an A0 for the June 12 deadline. When you get your summary statement, you can ask whether you should plan to apply again in June.

  87. Sunny said

    Hello Writedit, I just received a 28 impact score (no percentile listed) on NCI K01. Do you know what is the range of payline for K01? I cannot find any websites listing payline for NCI K01. I also wonder if it is okay to contact PO and ask the chances of getting the award or should I wait until I get the summary statement (about 30 days)?

    Thanks,

    • writedit said

      NCI does not post paylines for K awards, but you should wait until you have your summary statement to contact your PO about whether your score will be competitive or whether you should plan to apply again in July. The funding range for K applications varies depending on the number of applications (submitted & scored competitively) and available funds. Last year, NCI funded almost a third of K01 applications (7/22), whereas the year before (2016), it funded just under 20% (5/26).

  88. LMM said

    Hi Writedit, I see a common theme in your advice to wait for a summary statement before reaching out to a PO for advice, so I am wondering how long I will have to wait. My K01 application was reviewed on February 1st by a chartered SRG at NIA (not CSR) and the “next steps” info given says that for these applications summary statements will be available no later than 30 days before council meeting. Will I really have to wait until the end of April (nearly 3 months) to get my summary statement?

    • writedit said

      Most summary statements are out within 6 weeks of the review meeting. You can contact the SRO if you haven’t heard within 2 months of the meeting – and you shouldn’t have to wait 3 months, especially for a K application. The reason for waiting for a summary statement is that if you are in the gray zone, the PO can assess whether he/she can advocate for your application for select pay and give better advice on resubmission (both whether you need to and best strategies). Right now, it is hard for POs to gauge funding likelihood due to the lack of an FY18 budget, so the summary statement is even more important.

  89. RB said

    Hi Writedit, I just received a impact score of 30 (Percentile 15%) for a NICHD R01 A0 application. I am an ESI. NICHD has no paylines for 2018. Prior NICHD R01 ESI paylines were 13%. What are my chances?

    • writedit said

      That should be a promising score for an ESI application … as I keep telling others, I would suggest that you get in touch with your PO after you receive your summary statement to ask about funding likelihood and whether you should submit an A1 in July.

  90. Irasleepless said

    Dear Writedit,
    I just received the impact score of 26 for my ESI MIRA. I know MIRA is relatively new mechanism, but what are the typical fundable scores? Is 26 good or bad for MIRA?

    Thank you!
    Irina

    • writedit said

      I believe that MIRA scores have been all over the place, but I think a 26 would be at least borderline, based on what folks were posting previously (you can search NIH Paylines and the Archive page for June 2015 – December 2016 to find posts about MIRA, though not all are specific to the ESI MIRA). It obviously depends on the number and quality of applications, which can vary from year to year, so it’s difficult to say. When you get your summary statement (discussion comments also play a role in funding decisions), you can check with your PO and ask whether you should start working to convert the MIRA to an R01.

      • Irasleepless said

        Update: my ESI MIRA with impact score of 26 was recommended for funding.

      • writedit said

        Woohoo – congratulations! Thank you for sharing this update for your score, and best wishes for success for your project and your career in biomedical research.

  91. Deep Blue said

    Hi Writeedit, where do you see NIAID R01 pay lines going at the end of the year?

    • writedit said

      If there are no surprises in the FY18 budget that finally passes, then I would think at least FY17 levels.

      • Deep Blue said

        Thanks. Clearly no surprises in the budget.

  92. Craig said

    We have an SBIR at the FDA that is listed as “Pending Council Review” now for more than 2 weeks. The PO said to wait for council review, but we could resubmit before April 5 if we knew the result. How long to wait?

    • SaG said

      Assuming FDA follows the same rules as NIH (both part of HHS) then you can resubmit as soon as your summary statement is released. You do not have to wait for Council review.

      • Craig said

        The current Application Status is listed as “Pending Council Review”, so, we don’t know if we are currently funded or not.

      • writedit said

        You won’t know for months. As SaG noted, at the NIH, PIs can reapply once they have their summary statements. The policy is that a PI cannot resubmit the same (or nearly the same) application while another is under review. An application is under review until the summary statement is issued, at which point an A0 or A1 application proposing the same science can be submitted (this is spelled out in the SBIR FOAs, in which FDA participates). Your FDA contact may be suggesting that you wait to see if you receive funding prior to resubmitting in April, but you can go ahead and get your application ready and submit for April 5 if you have not heard back (there is no policy that you must wait for a funding decision before resubmitting). What was your score?

  93. Craig said

    Impact = 37. But one of the reviewers had a conflict of interest and we brought this up. That’s when it suddenly went to Council Review.

    • writedit said

      All applications have the status “Council review pending” and then “Council review complete”. Not all applications are sent to Council to consider for funding (only those within a certain scoring range and/or of programmatic interest are sent to Council for approval), and not all applications approved by Council for funding receive awards (IC director makes that decision at NIH). Your impact score of 37 might be a little high, since I think your PO would have just said you were in good shape for an award if that were a competitive score, and thus require internal discussion of the COI to determine whether it should receive an award. Did your FDA contact say when their “Council” will meet and decide? The date should be in your eRA Commons status, but this is probably not the actual date. Looking at the FDA website, I do not see anything like an advisory council that would review grant applications, and the FDA version of “Council” could be quite different than the NIH (e.g., just an internal discussion at the Office or Center that would fund your proposal). If you do not know the actual date by which you will have an answer, you could ask your PO again for clarification; if she doesn’t know, and you don’t have an answer by April 5, I would suggest that you resubmit (let your PO know that you don’t want to miss this deadline and risk not having funding or an application in the pipeline).

  94. Confused said

    Hi Writedit,

    I submitted a K99 (October) and my application status showed “unscored” a week before the study section met. The impact score said ‘no IRG recommendation’. After the study section met, I now have an impact score (48) with an active JIT link. I dont have a percentile. It also says Pending Council Review. I am not going to hold my breath on actually getting funded, but what is going on? I don’t understand if I am scored or not. Any insights?

    • writedit said

      You won’t have a percentile, and with an impact score of 48, you should plan on a resubmission, but you’ll need to wait to receive your summary statement (and then talk with your PO about how the discussion went and strategies for preparing your resubmission). You can ignore the automatic JIT link – only a direct request from a PO or GMS is meaningful (in terms of potential funding). Your eRA status will say “Pending Council review” until the Council at your IC meets, at which point it will change to “Council review completed” – and almost certainly stay that way. As an FYI, all non-fellowship applications have the status “Pending Council review” and “Council review completed” – absolutely no information in those status designations, even if you had a competitive score.

      • Confused said

        Thank you! I will talk to the PO once I have my summary statement.

      • Confused said

        Hi Writedit,

        Following up on my K99 NEI submission in October 2017, the eRA statuses has been nothing short of confusing. On 03/06/18, the status was SRG review completed: Application unscored. On 03/14/18, the status was SRG review completed: Council review pending. I got a score of 48 and my summary statement.
        Today, I noticed my status today went from “Council review pending” to “Application administratively withdrawn by IC”. That seems rather puzzling. Should I contact my PO and ask him about this? I intend on resubmitting again in November. I am also unsure if I should treat my application as triaged or as one with an impact score of 48 for how I rework my application for the resubmission.

      • writedit said

        You need to talk with your PO about this. NEI would only withdraw the application if they were funding a different iteration of it (ie, they withdraw the A1 application when the prior A0 … or subsequent A0 … is funded) or if the application was found to be ineligible for review or award (eg, you were not an eligible K99 applicant or you submitted a duplicate application). I can provide no insight about what might be happening, and because you plan to submit again, you need to talk with your PO. Given the erroneous messages you have already received for this application, the “administratively withdrawn” message could be yet another error that will be corrected eventually (and an indication of someone in grants management who clearly needs additional training) – but you still need to let your PO know what happened previously (unscored, then 48) and the current situation.

      • Confused said

        Thank you so much for your immediate response. I truly appreciate your insight. I emailed my PO asking about it and he informed me that it wasn’t an error and that because my grant wasn’t funded it was administratively withdrawn. I was under the impression that any submission which is discussed stays active for about 2 years. I am not sure what I am missing here. But I should still be ok resubmitting the application as A1 even though my A0 was withdrawn?
        Thanks again.

      • writedit said

        This is very odd, because, like you, I have not seen applications administratively withdrawn 2 or so years after review – especially A0s … especially scored A0s (since there is always a remote chance they could get picked up for funding later). If you are eligible to apply for the K99 again, then you should be able to do so – but given these unusual circumstances, I’d suggest you check with your PO to be sure and ask at the same time about resubmission strategy (ie, describe the revisions you intend to make and ask if the PO thinks they will address concerns raised during the discussion).

  95. Questioning said

    Dear writedit
    How are PO’s assigned to CSR-reviewed applications prior to initial scientific review? Does CSR assign? Does the Institute assign PO before CSR review? Or does the SRO assign PO’s at the same time as assigning study section reviewers? Thank you

    • SaG said

      An NIH Institute(s) is assigned to applications by the CSR Division of Receipt and Referral. Then the Institute assigns the PO. How that happens varies by Institute. Institutes should assign POs before review.

    • writedit said

      As SaG said, if you don’t already have a relationship with a PO (which you should mention in your optional cover letter, just to alert the SRO that you have been communicating with someone at your IC), then the IC to which CSR assigns the application assigns the PO. I would urge you to do homework to identify a PO prior to applying (and then communicate with this PO in advance of applying) and to identify the best SRG for your science – and then complete the referral form in the application package requesting the IC and SRG. CSR is assigns the application based on your abstract and will get it to a qualified review panel, but you want to be sure it is at the best panel for your work – and you want to understand the reviewers on the panel when preparing your proposal.

  96. WQ said

    Dear Writedit, Just curious whether you have any insights on the MIRA-ESI from NIGMS. I recently got an impact score of 20, but there is no percentile. Thus, I don’t know the likely hood of funding with this score. What makes my situation a little bit complicated is that I also have an R01 within a fundable score from a different institute (NHLBI). It seems that I may have to give up one. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    • WQ said

      My MIRA-ESI and the R01 are on totally different topics. Is it possible that I can get both? Any suggestion is appreciated! Thanks!

      • SaG said

        FYI, If you get the NHLBI grant before the ESI MIRA you will no longer be an ESI and therefore ineligible to get the ESI MIRA.

    • writedit said

      The NHLBI R01 does not make you ineligible per se, but you need to have 51% effort available, the science on the R01 and MIRA need to be different, and the $750K threshold might come into play, depending on your composite funding situation. The MIRA impact score sounds competitive, so if after reviewing the MIRA eligibility criteria again (https://www.nigms.nih.gov/Research/mechanisms/MIRA/Pages/default.aspx) you are still concerned about your funding situation in terms of MIRA eligibility, I would suggest you talk with the MIRA PO.

  97. Lili said

    Dear Writedit, I apologize for this somewhat silly question but I recently submitted my first R01 with a group of people. I am a PI but not the main. Even though the NIH eRA FAQ states that all PIs have access to submitted proposals, this one is NOT listed in my eRA commons. Am I doing something wrong? As ever.

    • writedit said

      Are you sure you are a PI as part of a multi-PI submission, or just a site PI on a multisite study … or just a senior/key personnel (with the slang of “co-PI” is irrelevant for NIH applications). If you are a PI as part of a multi-PI submission, you should communicate with the Contact PI to be sure the submission was entered into eRA Commons, and then using the assigned application number, inquire at eRA Commons Help Desk as to why it isn’t listed in your account. If this is your first R01 ever, then you might be better off as simply a senior/key personnel (not a PI as part of a multi-PI submission), so you don’t risk losing your new or ESI applicant status (which would happen if one of the other PI(s) is established & the application is funded).

      • Lili said

        ahhh I think I may just be a site PI (role is PI with a subcontract). I’ll ask the contact PI. (Don’t think I have ESI anymore due to DP2). THANK YOU!

      • writedit said

        Aha – yes, you are not a PI on the main application, so it won’t show up in your eRA Commons account. Congrats on the DP2! (correct, no ESI status, since the DP2 counts as your first major award)

  98. Abha said

    We just had a new R21 submission with NINDS scored at 30 (15th %ile). The current NINDS payline (under continuing resolution) is at 12 %ile.

    I’m trying to understand the likely impact of the recent budget appropriation on the NINDS paylines and funding strategy. Last year, they lowered their payline from 15%ile to 12%ile ostensibly because of a) uncertainties regarding the budget. But, despite the $2 billion increase in the NIH budget, paylines were not revised. The Director justified this with a) the launch of the R35 and b) significant out-year commitments (which he also said, would ease a bit in 2018). In 2018, under CR, the payline remains at 12%ile. Is the larger budget appropriation any more likely to budge it?

    Our PO was pretty clear that 15th %ile is not going to be funded this round because the payline is at 12 %ile (and NINDS seems to have hard paylines).

    • writedit said

      If your PO said no, then no. A lot of the extra money in the NIH budget is earmarked for specific types of research, and NINDS will likely increase funding in select areas rather than across the board to maintain Congressional enthusiasm for their work. Unfortunately, with long-term uncertainty in both the political and economic climate, ICs will be hesitant to take on too many long-term commitments … though this mainly applies to R01s rather than R21s or R03s (and other budget- and time-limited awards), so I am a little surprised that they won’t show more generosity for R21s especially (to explore novel science that could then move to the R01 pipeline). NINDS does offer limited select pay, as shown on their Funding Outcomes page (https://www.ninds.nih.gov/Funding/About-Funding/Outcomes-Data), but these result from PO advocacy for specific applications, which does not sound likely for your situation. You might ask your PO for advice on resubmission, including whether any modifications might make your work a higher priority for NINDS (to push your application over the edge for funding if the score is close again).

      • Abha said

        Turns out we hear from our PO that the payline has been raised and we should prepare JIT documents.

      • writedit said

        Yes – that’s right … raised to the 15th percentile. Congratulations and best wishes for success with your research!

  99. writedit said

    More than score goes into decisions, and I also know DP2 scores up through the low 30s have received awards – but there is no hard payline (and scores that high, such as yours, are definitely on the bubble, depending on how everyone else did). When you get your summary statement, you can check with the PO, to see if he/she has any insight about the score/review comments (which will determine whether an IC picks up your application). If you already know a PO in the IC most likely to take your application, you could check with him/her, too (or check in RePORTER to see which PO(s) in your IC tend to oversee DP2 awards).

  100. kate said

    I have a R21 (7th percentile) . I have sent several emails to my PO but never received any response. Is there anyone know if NCI will increased the payline for R21.

    Thanks

  101. Vencent said

    when can we get a result for R21 submitted on June 12, 2017?

    • BD said

      Usually by November 2017

      • Vencent said

        The following is information about my application. I asked PO but not received any response. Experts, please take a look at it and see if it has a chance to be awarded.
        Application
        Award Document Number:
        FSR Accepted Code: N
        Snap Indicator Code:
        Impact Score: 33
        Percentile:
        For information about next steps: Click here
        Early Stage Investigator Eligible:
        New Investigator Eligible:
        Eligible for FFATA Reporting: Yes
        Study Section
        Scientific Review Group: CMAD
        Council Meeting Date (YYYY/MM): 2018/01
        Meeting Date: 10/19/2017
        Meeting Time: 08:00
        Study Roster: View Meeting Roster
        Advisory Council (AC)
        Meeting Date: 01/19/2018
        Meeting Time: 04:00
        Institute/Center Assignment
        Institute or Center Assignment Date
        NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON AGING (Primary) 06/14/2017
        NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON AGING (Primary) 06/19/2017
        Status History
        Effect Date Status Message
        10/20/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
        06/22/2017 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
        06/14/2017 Application entered into system.

      • writedit said

        You didn’t mention the activity code, which could make a difference. If you have not heard from your PO by early May, check in with him/her again for an update and ask whether you should resubmit in July (if you have not already submitted an A1). You should probably be planning on a resubmission, though. If your PO does not reply to email or phone calls in May, then look at the NIA website to determine your PO’s branch chief (I assume in the Division of Aging Biology – but if not, in the appropriate Division) and ask this person for guidance on your application and next steps.

    • writedit said

      If you mean a funding decision, then you should hear from your PO in a month or so, if your score was borderline. (you should have received an impact score and summary statement last fall) If you haven’t contacted your PO in a while, try in early May for an update, both on your application status and whether you should submit again in June/July.

      • Vencent said

        Other information:

        R21 Research Projects Exploratory/Developmental Grants To encourage the development of new research activities in categorical program areas. (Support generally is restricted in level of support and in time.)
        Meeting Date: 10/19/2017 RFA/PA: PAR17-039
        Council: JAN 2018 PCC: 3BFNDBW
        Requested Start: 04/01/2018
        By the way, my topic is associated with Alzheimer’s disease, which seems to have a good pay line.

      • writedit said

        Aha – lots more useful information. Because this is a PAR, programmatic priority will play as big a role as score, so you are in the running, though I still cannot say how competitively (depends on scores of other applications). There will be no percentile both because it is an R21 and because it is a PAR (though it was reviewed in a regular study section than a special IC panel). Don’t worry about missing your start date – that is not an expiration date. Your start date can be as late as September 30, 2018 (but won’t be in this situation). It could be your PO has not responded because he/she still does not know how much money that special program will have to spend (and therefore how many applications can be funded). My earlier advice still applies – hopefully you’ll hear something by May.

  102. BD said

    Thanks to all for this nice discussion group. This is very helpful.
    Finally, I received my R01 Notice of Award from NIAID. It was reviewed October 19, 2017. I got 12%. My PO was extremely helpful.
    I followed lots of your advice and approached very professional way. I got through selected pay line.
    THANK YOU ALL!!!

    • writedit said

      Congratulations and best wishes for success with your research!

    • Deep Blue said

      BD, new investigator/ESI? or established? I just refused the offer of a 4 yr select pay at 11%ile, since I am convinced the final payline will move at least two points from the current 9%ile. Lets see if the risk is worth it.

  103. mic2018 said

    Hello,
    when should we expect the summary statements from MIRA applications? The scores were sent in mid March.
    Thanks for this very useful website!

    • writedit said

      Summary statements can take up to 6-7 weeks, and they are released as they are completed (vs all at once), so some PIs have probably received theirs, while others, like you, are still waiting. If you have not received anything by early May, you could touch base with the SRO for an update on timing.

      • Deep Blue said

        The PO has to prep NI’s/ESI’s first in any case, and then are more likely to work on the applications with the best scores earlier.

  104. mic2018 said

    Thanks!

  105. Jo said

    Hello. Thank you for this really helpful website.
    I have a resubmitted K01 application at NICHD that received an impact score of 10 in March. After receiving the summary statement I contacted the PO just to double check if there was any other information that she thought might be helpful as the application moves on to council review, but have not heard back from her. I need to make some career decisions that are fairly contingent on the K01 getting funded (or not) and wondered if you have any advice on what to do next. I’m hopeful for funding, as I believe the interim payline is 14, but am anxious that I may be in for a long wait before knowing for sure….

    • writedit said

      Wow – if they do not fund an application with a perfect score (10), something is not right with the world. Looking at their success rate data, they fund from 5-8 K01 applications per year, and I am sure the others cannot all be scored at 10. Your PO might not have replied since there is nothing you should need to add. I would suggest you need to let her know about the need for feedback due to the timing of your career decisions based on K01 funding; she cannot make any guarantee, since nothing is guaranteed until the NoA arrives, but she should be able to give you a little piece of mind about the high likelihood of funding barring any completely unforeseen event.

      • Jo said

        Thank you so much! I really appreciate you getting back to me so quickly and for the great advice.

      • Jo said

        Just following up: my PO has replied, but says that she cannot provide any information about the likelihood of funding at this time. It’s a little frustrating but I guess I will just have to wait and see….

      • writedit said

        Wow. Well, I still cannot imagine a scenario (or at least not many) in which NICHD does not fund an application with a perfect score, since they have a history of funding at least 5 applications per year (it might be different if they only funded one), but thanks for the update, and please keep us posted.

      • Jo said

        Thank you! Will do.

      • Jo said

        My status changed to “Award prepared” today! I wanted to say thank you for all of the great advice and information on this thread. It’s been hugely useful and reassuring during this long process.

  106. K08_App said

    I applied for my K08 revision and was scored 25. This was an improvement from initial score of 30. The summary statement was much more positive than the score –

    “..Candidate is adequately responsive to the critiques of previous submission and the CDP, mentoring and research plan in resubmission is significantly improved.”

    All reviewers gave me 1s and 2s and were highly positive with mostly “no weakness” comments. And there was only one reviewer who gave me a three for research plan (and a 1 for everything else). So I didn’t understand why my overall score didn’t improve much.

    I tried to discuss likelihood of fundability with my PO. They have asked me to just wait for council review and didn’t offer even a phone discussion.

    I am stuck now. No way to get any input till June. Not sure if I should re-apply for a new K08 in June.

    What would you do, if you were in my position. Re apply or wait?

    • writedit said

      You don’t mention the IC, which would make a difference, but I assume you know the prior/interim K paylines if your IC posts theirs (if your IC does post paylines, and you are within last year’s or the current interim, then you are fine). If you did not specifically ask about whether to resubmit in your last message, you could send an email with just that one question – would you recommend that I submit another K08 application in June? – and see if you get a response.

      • It’s at the NCI. I don’t think they publish paylines for K. Where would I find it if they do. With the budget increase will they be adjust pay lines?

        Ihave asked the PO specifically regarding new application for June and got a generic email that its up to me and they can’t say anything as I need to wait for council review.

      • writedit said

        Hmm. Rather unhelpful. I guess I am especially surprised in the career development program (where you need to make career decisions). Saying “it is up to you” could mean that you will be okay – but only if you know this PO would have recommended that you definitely apply again at a score of, say, 40. Did the PO specifically say to resubmit when you received the score of 30?

        Looking at the NCI success rate for K08 applications, it looks as though they fund about a third (or slightly fewer) applications – but this of course requires knowledge of the number and scores of the other applications to be useful for your situation.

        If your mentor has a PO who might be able to provide better insight, you (or your mentor) could ask this PO. We’ll see if anyone else posts here (haven’t seen any NCI K08 scores posted in the last couple of years).

        I know it is a lot of work, but I guess I would suggest preparing a new application, just to have insurance, since you won’t know until after the June deadline passes (if your 25 is funded, you can withdraw the new application).

  107. Kay said

    I submitted R21 and R01 to the NEI. Before submission, I was informed that R21 and R01 will be reviewed by different study sections. But, I just checked the commons status showing both will be reviewed at the same study section. Do you have any idea whether R21 and R01 are normally reviewed at the same study section? The problem is that the R21 may cause some conflict issues, reducing the chance of my R01 getting funded.
    Thank you.

    • writedit said

      Yes, both R01 and R21 applications are generally reviewed in the study section (also R15s, Fs, and other activity codes). Even if you request a different study section for each application, CSR can still assign them to the same SRG. If they are both most appropriate for the SRG to which they are assigned, then you should leave both applications there.

      I am not sure what you mean by a “conflict”. The SRO will instruct reviewers to ignore your other application during the discussion, and each application is scored according to its scientific merit, independent of all other applications, including others from your lab. In other words, having both applications should not affect the review, though the IC might not want to fund both (though this can happen – having both applications funded at once).

      Now, if you mean that there could be a conflict due to overlapping science, then you need to talk with your PO soon. If there is significant overlap between two applications currently under review, both applications will be withdrawn by CSR, unless you first withdraw one yourself (hard for me to say what “significant overlap” might look like for your applications, but a PO who knows your science would be able to judge & advise).

  108. Irasleepless said

    Dear writedit,
    I have submitted ESI MIRA and a multi-PI RM1 as a co-PI. The RM1 has not been reviewed yet, but MIRA got a competitive score. What should I do? Should RM1 be withdrawn if I get the MIRA? Should I adjust my status to a “collaborator” on the RM1 before it gets reviewed?

    Thank you!

    • SaG said

      At this point do nothing. But, you can’t have both grants. If you get the MIRA you can’t accept any money from the NIGMS RM1. You can be listed as Co-I but you have to use your MIRA money to fund your portion of the work.

      • writedit said

        Thanks for jumping in with this great information!

      • Irasleepless said

        Thank you!

  109. Jun Yang said

    Dear writedit,

    I had my R01 scored yesterday. Since it was in response to special NCI RFA I only had an impact score of 37. I am a new and ESI but I felt it might not be promising with this score. The council meeting will be held on May. I guess it will take at least 2 weeks to get the Summary. Considering the unusual timing, shall I contact my PO now to ask if the score is promising, so I can decide if to resubmit as a regular R01 in June? Or I wait until I have the Summary?

    Thanks

    Jun

    • writedit said

      You need to wait for your summary statement before you can submit the same science – and to find out from your PO if the RFA application has a chance of funding (your PO will not be able to comment on funding likelihood based on your score alone). Your summary statement should arrive by the end of May, but it might not be sent until after June 5, in which case you would need to wait for Oct 5. It is your call as to whether you want to try to revise without having any reviewer comments (and without knowing if you will be able to submit for June 5). If you look at the RFA itself, it will state the Council review and the earliest start dates (so you can see if it will go to the May Council).

  110. Jun Yang said

    Thanks. I will wait the summary statement.

  111. RR said

    hey All, looking to share experience/insights with current DP2 applicants. I haven’t heard anything yet and was also not asked for JIT. Not sure if that is any indication. Curious if anyone has heard on status change yet? thanks!

    • writedit said

      You can search this page and the archived pages for DP2 to see when people reported action on their DP2s last year … you shouldn’t panic yet, certainly. You can probably check in with your PO for an update in June, if you haven’t heard anything before then.

  112. HEHJ said

    Hello, the status of my R01 application was changed from ‘Pending council review’ to ‘Pending’ from the panel of list of applications/awards. However, when I clicked my grant number, the status still shows ‘Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official’. Can anybody explain me this situation?

    • writedit said

      The discrepancy should resolve one way or the other quickly. If your application is under consideration for an award, you’ll get a JIT request, if you haven’t already. If the change to Pending was a mistake, it will go back to Pending Council review or Council review completed. Don’t worry or read too much into it until it becomes clear whether your application is pending administrative review or still with Council.

      • HEHJ said

        Thanks much for the quick response! As the council meeting was done last Friday, I hope it will be changed to ‘Pending administrative review’.

  113. SDD said

    Dear Writedit,

    I submitted an NIGMS K99 award in Oct. 2017 and received an impact score of 16 in April. I have contacted the PO in early April regarding the funding possibility. He said the score was great and funding decisions would probably be made within weeks after the May council meeting. Now my status has changed to “Council Review Completed” but I haven’t received any JIT request. Is this common? I think JIT is usually sent out early by PO for competitive applications, right? Thank you so much!

    • writedit said

      Not necessarily. Based on your score and your PO’s comments, I don’t think you need to worry at all. It sounds like you’ll get your request in the next 2-3 weeks (but don’t panic if it’s later). The procedures for R01s & other RPGs are not necessarily the same for Ks, which are handled as a group by activity code (rather than science) – and especially for K99s (confirmation of postdoctoral status & absence of job offers, etc.).

      • Carfield said

        Hi Writedit, could you elaborate a little bit on the procedures? What did you mean by Ks are handled by activity code rather than science? And how does NIH confirm postdoctoral status for K99s (like what documents should we prepare in advance from our institution?). Thanks!

      • writedit said

        My comment about the Ks is that there are POs just for career development awards, though they are broken out by Division (but one for entire Division vs multiple POs per Branch specializing in targeted disciplines). Because there are so many fewer K applications compared with R01s, I don’t think it is as critical for those POs to send out JIT until they know the applications likely to be funded, so I don’t think you should be concerned about not getting a request yet. On the postdoctoral status, I mention this because some K99 applicants start job hunting while waiting for updates on their award – especially if they receive a good score, and some POs will use this to disqualify them for the K99 (with the rationale that if they are interviewing for/have offers for faculty positions, they probably don’t need an additional year of mentored training). If you indicate your postdoctoral position will continue at the same institution (ie, not changing universities/research institutions – which also happens with some applicants) through at least the first year of K99 support, you are fine – no special documentation needed. You absolutely should not panic about this – again, I mentioned it only because some POs will probe to be sure K99 applicants are not on the job market before their K99 is done (or started).

      • Carfield said

        Thanks very much for your detailed reply, Writedit! I have a quick follow-up question. Hypothetically, is a postdoc allowed for promotions to other ‘trainee’ positions within the same institution after the K99 is awarded? For instance, in some institutions, the position of research assistant professorship (hence non-tenure track) is still being mentored as a trainee and does research within the mentor’s space/resources. Will NIH (specifically NICHD) allow such promotions during the K99 award period?

      • writedit said

        I believe as long as it is not tenure track and not a new job opportunity that you sought out, you should be okay. If this happens after the K99 starts, in which case you can visit that issue with the GMS to confirm it is within NIH policy (and within salary restrictions). At worst, NICHD will say no, and you will have to delay/forego the promotion (usually made to allow you to submit grant applications, I believe, plus increase salary/benefits). If anyone else has experience with the research assistant professor appointment during a K99, please chime in.

      • Carfield said

        Thanks so much for your feedback, Writedit!

  114. Tom Therramus said

    I have an established investigator NHLBI RO1 application that scored at the 18th percentile last December and its status just moved to pending in COMMONS in the last few days. The present NHBLI RO1 payline in 15. I know this sounds like a not so bright question, but based on others experience is this cause for optimism ?

    • writedit said

      Perfectly valid question. Yes, if it changed from “Council review completed” to “Pending”, it means a human is working on your application, possibly getting it ready for award processing. NHLBI makes selective pay awards based on the scientific review and programmatic priorities, and as the end of the FY grows closer (Sept 30), ICs begin going back to see how many applications above the set paylines they can and might want to fund. Now, this does not mean you are getting an award, but you should certainly check with your PO (and/or GMS) to see if they need any information from you, such as an updated JIT. Now, sometimes the status changes when there is some administrative work related to an application but unrelated to award processing, so there is the chance it will just go back to “Council review completed”, but your PO’s response will clarify why the status changed and what to expect.

      • Tom Therramus said

        Thanks. Your answer is much appreciated.

      • Tom Therramus said

        A note of update to say that we received our NOA yesterday : )

      • writedit said

        Woohoo! Congratulations and best wishes for success with your research.

  115. BHASKAR said

    I just got impact score 31 of my R21 grant from NIAAA. Is there any hope I can get funded? Please advise.

    • writedit said

      That is a bit high, but because your application is for FY19 (I assume it was submitted for standard deadline in Feb), your PO will have no clue until the FY19 budget passes, which probably won’t be until next year. However, when you receive your summary statement, ask your PO if you should resubmit in November. My guess is that the answer will be yes (for insurance, even if there is a chance of funding the score 31 application). Then also ask if your PO has any recommendations on strategy for responding to the review/preparing your resubmission (since PO may have been at study section meeting and heard how the discussion of your application went).

      • BHASKAR said

        Thanks for your insightful thoughts.

  116. RA said

    NHLBI had a council meeting yesterday, but no change of status in my COMMONS yet. Has anybody noticed a change in his/her COMMONS?

    • writedit said

      Nothing will change immediately after Council meets. There will be internal meetings to finalize the paylist, and then the status will change on a case-by-case basis only when an application on the list is selected for processing – no mass change in status just because Council met.

  117. Bridesmaid said

    I know NIMHD does not publish paylines, which makes it very hard to figure out potential for funding. I am wondering if anyone has experience with them and can mention at what score did they get funded (or not) by NIMHD. I just received an impact score of 32 (no published percentile) on an R21 for an RFA. The summary statement is not in yet and will take some time so I’d like to get a sense about any potential for funding, until reading the SS and talking to the PO in a few weeks.

    • writedit said

      Hopefully someone will chime in with a funded R21 score – you can also search the archives of these pages. Of course, your application is for FY19, but for now, you could consider it likely to be in line with FY18 paylines. When you get your summary statement, the first key question for your PO will be whether to resubmit in Oct/Nov – and if so, any recommendations for strategy based on the study section discussion.

  118. ST said

    Hi All,

    I am in a tricky situation and would appreciate some advice. I am currently supported by an F32 award. I have a K99 application that had a below-the-payline score and PO was positive about its fundability. It is currently in the post-council phase. In the meantime, suggested by my mentor, I have accepted another Career Development Award from a non-profit organization starting July 1, but haven’t discussed it with my K99 PO. So, as I need to terminate my F32 very soon and partially reveal that I will be supported by another grant, I am concerned that my early F32 termination (before K99 NOA) will negatively affect the post-council consideration of my K99 application. Any advice?

    • writedit said

      The bigger problem will be any overlap. NIH can only fund you for the project and training plan that was reviewed at study section. If this is being covered by the non-profit, then your K99 funds cannot be repurposed for another aspect of training that you hadn’t proposed. Usually what is better is to accept the NIH award and then ask the non-profit to adjust their award to meet your remaining needs (since foundations/societies typically have more flexibility). You will obviously need to disclose the non-profit career development award eventually as part of your JIT, so it would be better to talk with your K99 PO as soon as possible to review areas where there is and is not overlap. If there is no overlap, then you’ll be fine – though that seems unlikely given these are both career development awards, and the NIH will not want you pursuing a second mentored project on top of your time commitment for the K99. The PO will be key to making it work – and if you plan to apply to this IC for funding in the future, then you want to be sure you work with them on this (vs wait and try to keep both awards without disclosing any information until the last possible minute).

      • ST said

        Thank you Writedit. I just spoke with our on-site grant specialist, and she suggested the same thing, ie contacting the PO and telling upfront that I have accepted another Career award and I will terminate should I receive my K99 award.

  119. NSI said

    Hello Writedit, I got my first R01 early this year and thank you so much for the ideas/suggestions shared here. We have one project ongoing and kindly some preliminary data from it can be used for another R01 proposal. As a junior faculty, I am worried that NIH may not be willing to fund another project from my lab in the following years. Any suggestions for my case will be highly appreciated. Thanks!

    • writedit said

      The NIH wants to fund the best science, and new investigators can certainly have 2 R01s if the science is of interest to the IC. If it is possible for you to target a different IC and/or study section with your second application, that would help distribute your funding (and review) sources (just a good strategy in general) – but it is not uncommon for one IC to award more than one R01 to the same PI. If the science is outstanding (per peer review) and an IC priority (talk with your PO about your ideas), the IC will not withhold funding just because you are a new investigator.

  120. Cornfield said

    Hi Writedit,

    I’m wondering if you have any insights on re-budgeting PI’s salary during at pre-award or post-award phases? My council has approved my grant last month and I’m currently waiting for the JIT requests. My institution is considering a salary increase due to my past performance (still within the NIH cap). But I’m not sure if NIH will allow that increase, or my institution has to pay for the difference? Or do we need to ask for NIH’s approval before they issue the award if that makes their job easier?

    • Rob said

      I actually have the same question. This for a K99/R00 application, and I expect to receive the request for JIT soon that includes the budget. I was wondering if it’s safe to discuss an increase in the salary portion (of the K99 phase because of the following promotion) with the PO at this point.

      • writedit said

        In your case, the PO’s question would be, what promotion? During the K99 portion, you cannot accept a tenure-track position (or even research assistant professor). If you mean that you are getting a promotion from postdoc to instructor, that should be okay, but ICs do not like to see their K99 awardees being promoted during the K99 phase, since they are technically still in training under a mentor. Your salary would need to be within the IC limits for the K99 phase, too.

      • Cornfield said

        Hi Rob, just to follow up with your post, I’m in the same situation about a potential promotion. Was your institution considering the promotion before or after the award is made?

    • writedit said

      You can ask your grants administrator (at your institution) if they have experience with this, but I think the salary increase would need to be in place at the time you ask for an adjustment (vs increasing the salary allocation in anticipation of an increase). If this will happen soon, you can address it during the JIT process and award negotiation. I would suggest you let your grants person know both the level of increase and timing so they can take it into consideration in negotiating the award (or going back to renegotiate, having alerted the IC to the future change, if the salary change happens after the award is issued). I assume this is for an RPG vs K – if the latter, then the salary increase would also need to be within the salary limits of your IC sets for that activity code.

      • Cornfield said

        Thanks so much for your input, Writedit. This is for a K and there is a salary limit. What happens if the salary increase goes above the limit? Say if the limit is $70,000, but the salary structure at my institution is set at $75,000. Will it be the case that the NIH still pays the limit of $70,000 and my institution covers the extra $5,000?

      • writedit said

        Yes – the salary limit on the FOA is as much as the NIH will pay, but your institution can pay you more (as is often the case in high COL areas). You could ask the PO about budgeting above the salary cap, but it would need to be well justified (and may not be possible at all to be fair across the board).

      • Cornfield said

        That makes a lot of sense! I guess I’m just a bit confused on whom to reach out to for salary re-budgetting issues. Should we usually contact the PO or the Grants Management Specialist (who I assume will issue the JIT request)? Thanks!

    • Rob said

      Hi Cornfield, I talked to the PO of my K99 application about re-budgeting the salary part, and he said they make the playlist based on the proposed budget during application, and they likely can’t pay beyond it. But, he suggested discussing it with my GMS after receiving JIT request to see if they can cover it if it’s a small amount. Also, he said they don’t mind that the institution pays any remaining part of the salary to the awardee.

      • Cornfield said

        Thanks for sharing your experience, Rob. Since I am still waiting for the JIT request, I guess I will just wait and discuss with my GMS after the request is issued. If you don’t mind me asking, in your case, did you have a successful experience re-budgeting your salary with GMS, and which IC was your application in? Also, how much time did it take for you to receive the JIT request? Many thanks!

      • writedit said

        Thanks so much for your great input, Rob!

        Yes, I think waiting to discuss with the GMS at the time of JIT would be best. I was assuming it was a difference of just a few thousand dollars, but if it is a significant increase and you are above the salary limit, you will probably be asked to have your institution cost-share the amount over $70K (pro-rated to your effort, if you are not 100%).

      • Cornfield said

        Thanks for your advice, Writedit. So should I have the salary increase in place already when I talk this with my GMS at the time of JIT? My institution seems unwilling to give the increase unless they are sure the award will be made, which would only happen after the JIT and I would miss the chance of re-budgetting with the GMS at the time of JIT.

      • writedit said

        If everything is set (ie, dollar amount) except the final okay, that can come when you get the JIT request. Your grants administrator will need to be able to give the GMS your salary when JIT is submitted (which doesn’t need to be immediate, though you don’t want to dawdle). Rather than agonize over it, you can just ask your PO if a salary increase (and give your PO a $ amount) can be accommodated by the award. If not, you’ll still get your increase, but on your institution’s dime.

      • Cornfield said

        Thanks Writedit for your advice. Do POs usually ask the reason of a salary increase?

      • writedit said

        Not sure, but I doubt it. If your title changes (academic rank), that is what they will notice and may ask about.

    • Rob said

      No problem. I am actually in the same boat, still waiting for the JIT and haven’t talked to GMS yet. The PO (NHLBI) said the paylist could take between 2 to 4 weeks after council to be prepared, and once it is ready, the GMS will send requests for JIT docs.

      • Cornfield said

        Thanks for sharing the timeline, Rob! I guess now we will just be waiting!

  121. HEHJ said

    Dear writedit,

    Previously, my program officer suggested me to submit an amended application of my R01 while I’m waiting for the council since it was just above the payline (it was under the NIH special practice for new investigator R01). Now, the status of my R01 is pending administrative review, but I did not receive the NOA yet. The thing is that my amended application will be reviewed in 1 month, and they published the roster. Should I ask my program officer to kill it or just wait until I get the NOA?

    • writedit said

      NIH will automatically withdraw the amended application when the original application receives an award. You don’t need to do anything. If it will be reviewed in a month, it is too late to save reviewer time in any case, though at least it won’t knock another application out of discussion (assuming you have your NOA by then).

      • HEHJ said

        Thanks much for the clarification!

  122. Need Help! said

    I just got my R01 score (impact score: 38; percentile 21).

    The award rate for NEI is anticipated to be approximately 25% and payline is not published. I also found that NEI staff is encouraged to identify and give special consideration to first time investigators in making funding recommendations.

    I am a new investigator but not early-stage investigator. I wonder whether my proposal is within the fundable range or not? Is there any hope I can get funded? Please advise me. Thank you.

    • writedit said

      Since the NEI FY18 fiscal policy only mentions ESI applicants receiving a break, you won’t get an automatic payline bump, but you could be considered for select pay, depending on your PO’s enthusiasm for your work. When you have your summary statement, ask your PO if you should submit again (I expect the answer will be yes, no matter what). This is for FY19, and it will be a long time before we know those paylines, so your PO will not want you to risk missing a funding cycle waiting to hear about this application.

  123. Human Subject Determination Change said

    Our R43 proposal has moved to “pending” status. We initially identified the human subject portion of our study as non-exempt … but have since learned that our study is exempt (E1) … and we have a determination from letter indicating that from an external IRB. When moving from non-exempt to exempt, the GMS said that we needed an approval from our program officer (he is fine with it) and that an internal NIH human subject expert would be involved. What are the chances that this becomes a roadblock for us (changing from non-exempt to exempt)? Any thoughts or advice about this?

    • writedit said

      This should not be a problem at all. The NIH does need to confirm the change in approval status (non-exempt to exempt) before an award can be issued, but with your IRB documentation, you should be all set. The human subjects protections folks are part of every administrative review that involves human subjects research, so they would have been involved without your knowing it if your GMS had not said anything.

  124. Kaden said

    Hello,
    First of all, thanks for your patience and time in answering our questions! My K01 A0 application to NIDDK got a score of 40. My A1 application received 30. I’m waiting for my summary statement and then talking to the PO. Over the past 5 years, the success rate of this particular K-award has been between 25% to 43% (average around 32%). I know few people who received the same award with scores 32 and 35 in the past year. I understand that things are different in each cycle and the programmatic relevance of applications play a role in the institute’s decision. Do you think I should be prepared for a new A0 submission while still being hopeful? I appreciate any input.

    • writedit said

      You would be submitting in October, so you have plenty of time, but yes, you can start thinking about the next A0 while maintaining hope for the A1. The improvement in score is good, and if the summary statement concerns are easily addressed with your PO, he/she could have traction for a case for funding (and maybe the payline will be going up). You can start working in earnest on the A0 if the PO recommends that you do so (which I expect will be the case – if not, really good news, of course).

      • Kaden said

        Thanks for your comment. As the council meeting will be held in October, I’m assuming that this would be considered FY19, am I correct? In that case, will everything depend on when and what the Congress passes for FY19?

      • writedit said

        Correct – you will need to wait for the federal budget to pass, whether as individual appropriations bills (this fall) or the typical omnibus bill (likely next year). Both the House and the Senate have approved increases for the NIH appropriation, though, so paylines will be the same or go up in FY19.

      • Kaden said

        I was surprised that my PO asked me to avoid submitting another A0 because my A1 has adequately addressed the previous reviews and those minor remaining concerns are not likely to be mitigated till October. He sounded very positive about my application but he thought that my score is not likely to be improved in this particular study section. Instead, he asked me to put together a rebuttal letter to address the remaining concerns. Of course, he didn’t promise funding, but he was generally speaking highly of my application, which was surprising given how conservatives POs are in their conversations. I am still confused as to why the PO was strongly against submission of a new A0.
        Thanks.

      • writedit said

        Well, my experience is that NIDDK career development POs are on top of the funding situation, and perhaps having read your summary statement and knowing the study section so well and knowing the FY funding line, your PO feels the score will not get significantly better (ie, maybe a 25 at best next time) and/or your application will be funded at 30. It looks as though the NIH will get another increase in appropriation no matter what happens with the federal budget, so your PO probably feels more confident than usual at this point. I think that you can trust that your PO would not steer you wrong in this situation, work on the rebuttal to make it as strong as possible (especially if you have new data and/or new publications-abstracts accepted – including updates on your mentor), and then wait for word in the fall.

      • Kaden said

        In light of the new defence-labor-HHS bill that was passed by the Senate last week and by the House today, and assuming that the President will sign it, as he indicated today, what would be the timeline like for those applications that received scores in the 3rd cycle of 2018, for funding in FY19?

        From your previous answers, I gather that it could be months between President’s signature and the actual funding, but do applicants hear earlier about whether they will get funded, say in October-November?

        Summary of my application: my K01 A1 application to NIDDK received a priority score of 30 in the June 2018 study section. PO was generally positive and asked me to write a rebuttal letter. PO also asked me to avoid submitting another A0 in October.

        I much appreciate your input.

      • writedit said

        The appropriation must first go to HHS, then to the NIH, and then to your IC (NIDDK), with each transition taking a week or two, meaning NIDDK won’t know their final appropriation for another 6 weeks or so (after appropriation bill signed into law). The processing of awards will begin before then, so JIT requests and eRA status changes (Pending) will indicate activity in the meantime, though awards will still need to wait for the money to arrive. This is part of why the standard start date is Dec 1 (assuming appropriation is signed by Oct 1). The fact that your PO advised you not to resubmit is an excellent indicator of your likelihood of funding, though not a guarantee, of course.

  125. George said

    Dear Writedit,

    I just received my R01-A1 (NCI) score at 11th percentile. 2018 NCI payline is 9%. Whether I should contact PO to see whether have a chance to get funding? In addition, my R01 is also eligible to NINDS with 15% payline. Is it possible to request transfer the application to NINDS? Thanks very much!

    • writedit said

      You won’t know about this application until next year, since it falls under FY19. Your application would not be considered by NINDS until NCI released it – but again, nothing will happen until next year (or at the earliest, the end of this year). When you get your summary statement, you can first talk with your NCI PO about next steps (whether to resubmit). If you already have a PO at NINDS, you can talk with him/her, too, to determine whether they would be interested in your application if NCI declines to fund you. Just because it is assigned to NINDS does not mean they would fund it if NCI declines – the science must be of sufficient interest and priority to edge out an application for which NINDS is the primary IC.

      • George said

        Dear Writedit,

        Thanks very much for your quick reply and great suggestions! I am pretty familiar with NINDS PO who likes our research very much, while only talk with NCI PO once through the phone during last resubmission. I regret not to request to NINDS when submitting application. I will contact both PO for suggestions.

        Sorry I am confused for FY19. Our proposed R01 start date is 09/1/2018, which is falling into FY19?

        Thanks very much!!!

      • writedit said

        I assume that any applications submitted in early 2018 that would be considered for FY18 (Sept 1 start) will be reviewed at the June NCAB meeting, with those considered for December 1 reviewed at the August meeting (since next NCAB meeting is not until after Dec 1). You might have asked for a Sept 1 start, but NCI does not need to honor that. Since you don’t have your summary statement yet, that means the NCAB members don’t have it either, and that is what Council reviews (the quality of the review – based on the summary statement – and appropriateness for IC mission).

        If you are focusing on primary brain tumors, then your work would be welcome at NINDS (where there is an exceptional PO, as you apparently know). A change in IC assignment would need to be made at the time of submission (if not in the form requesting assignment, then immediately after referral by CSR). Your cancer center should be welcoming any opportunity to distribute funding among other ICs, such as NIGMS, NINDS, NIDCR, et al.

  126. George said

    My appointment is in cancer center where push PIs to submit R01 to NCI. Its payline is lowest…

    • George said

      Dear Writedit,

      I talked with NCI PO by phone, who said that the priority for considering funding for the R01 applications above 9th percentile is for PIs losing or going to losing any fundings. While PO also said he will support my application for internal review and asked me to write a rebuttal letter to him when receiving summary statement. PO also asked me to resubmit the application as new in this Oct.

      Due to the low payline of NCI, I am thinking to request the application assigning to NINDS in next submission. Should I tell NCI PO that? Don’t know whether it will affect his enthusiasm for supporting my current application for internal review.

      Thanks very much!

      • writedit said

        You don’t need to tell your NCI PO that when you submit again, you will request NINDS as your primary IC. You can just do that, assuming the NINDS PO is willing to receive your application, which it sounds like he/she is. It is good news that your NCI PO will go to bat for your application. If your NCI PO is told that your application cannot be funded, that is when you should ask about releasing it to NINDS. You’ll still get an application ready for October, in case it is needed, but maybe NINDS will pick up your 11th percentile application once NCI declines.

      • George said

        Thanks for great suggestions! I talked with NINDS PO as well, I was told that it is very unlike to successfully transfer my application to NINDS for funding although NCI deny due to a lot hurdles and also requiring leadership approval. Since NCI also fund brain tumor grant, it looks bad if they don’t approve funding for my application, which will incur NINDS leadership doubt my application quality and will also not consider it.

        NCI has a big grey period for funding applications above their payline. Last year payline is 10th percentile, don’t know why it drops to 9th although NCI received more budget this year. In 2017, NCI even funded applications at 18th-20th percentile, but left out around 40-50% applications at 11th percentile without support. It is really uncertainty for selective funding for applications above payline. Any colleagues have experiences in this situation for NCI? Thanks!

      • George said

        Dear Writedit,

        Thanks very much for your great suggestions! I would like to follow up my NCI R01 application situation with 11th percentile reviewed in this June. My PO asked me to write a rebuttal letter. I sent it to him recently. The PO also asked me to do some preliminary data and send that to him in mid September in order to help him for internal discussion. PO told me he will support my application for selective consideration. But also suggested me resubmit it in Oct.

        One week later, I had another NCI R01 application (A1) was scored not good, which is far below than A0 that is a good score. Actually Reviewer #1 made incorrect comments and gave bad score. I indicated this to this new PO who is different person with my first one, The new PO is in the same branch with first one and is chief of the branch. The new PO agreed me the mistake made by reviewer and almost suggested me to appeal, but finally she asked me resubmit it as new submission on Oct 5th. I discussed with the new PO for my 11th percentile R01 and asked her support. The PO suggested me wait the decision for 11th percentile R01 until January 2019. If it is not funded, then resubmit it as new in Feb. The PO asked me to focus on second R01 (not score well) resubmission in this Oct. She said hope my 11th R01 could be funded. Since the new PO is the branch chief, she should also participate in the discussion for my 11th percentile R01.

        My question is what should I do? should I listen second PO/Chief not resubmit my 11th R01 in Oct? or I should contact the first PO for the decision.

        Thanks very much!

      • writedit said

        It sounds like she wants you to concentrate on the A1 for October (rather than both), which is a good plan. That she thinks you can wait until January to make a decision about the 11th percentile is good news, because she is the one who will push for awards to applications above the 9th percentile (or whatever the FY19 payline will be at NCI, but probably no higher than 9th, especially early in the FY). If she currently thinks you have a good case, then you probably do – especially since POs are so conservative in giving advice. I suspect too she recognizes that she can only advocate for one application over the payline per PI per cycle, so, for example, if your A1 and the 11th percentile R01 were both submitted in Oct and both scored in the 10-13th percentile range, she could probably only push hard for one application, unless they were both of significant programmatic priority, due to the number of PIs who need support at all (vs for 2 R01s in the same cycle).

      • George said

        Thanks very much for your input! I will contact both POs in September that they asked me to update my progress.

  127. ESI said

    Dear Writedit,

    I submitted an R01 with a modular budget. However, in the NGA the committed budget for years 2-5 has been cut by more than 20% (direct cost for most years is <200K). Since I am starting my lab (ESI) and do not have any other sources of funding currently, this is really worrying me as I am not sure I will be able to support myself, a postdoc, and student in subsequent years. My question is, is it possible to talk to the PO or grants management specialist to request at least 200K per year? The grant is set to start in a month.

    • writedit said

      Yes, you can talk with your PO about this – usually ICs want to help ESIs as much as possible. You don’t mention the IC or whether your application was funded as select pay (above even the ESI payline), but it’s always worth reaching out to negotiate, especially in your situation. No IC wants to invest in an ESI and yet set him/her up for failure due to insufficient funds. Although not ideal (since you’d rather have enough $ to do everything you proposed), you could also ask about reducing your Aims so you are not held accountable for completing all your aims with so much less money (will look better at renewal).

      • ESI said

        Thank you Writedit, my grant is funded by NIA and it is actually within the general payline (did not need to avail of the NI/ESI bonus). I think NIA is reducing the budget by 18% for most grants. Can I talk to the PO about this, even though the NGA is already posted on Commons?

    • SaG said

      Didn’t you get a start up package?

      • ESI said

        Hi SaG, no. I am at the same university where I did my postdoc, so there was no start up package.

      • SaG said

        That sucks. Is it a tenure track position at least? They might/should offer you one now given the indirect costs you are bringing in. You might consider (and let them know) that you are interviewing for other jobs. Something to get the Dean and Chair worried.

      • NewPI said

        When this happened to me I worked with the folks in my grants office to lay out what aspects of Aims couldn’t be accomplished with the cut (exactly as writedit suggested) – they helped me draft a request to PO to restore funds and this was eventually granted. This is time to celebrate – by the way. An R01 of any size is not easy to come by – so pat yourself on the back and build a strong team! Enjoy!

      • ESI said

        Thank you SaG. It is a tenure-track position, in one of highly rated universities. It hasn’t been easy without any startup funds, so was really looking forward for this R01 to start. Not sure brining in IDC helps any with departmental support here.
        @NewPI, thanks. I will try discussing with my PO. Trying to be enthusiastic, but also a tad worried right now. By grants office do you mean the ORA at your institute, or the GMS at NIH?

      • NewPI said

        Talk to the grants people at your home institution – they will have experience with this. If not, let me know and I will contact you offline.

      • writedit said

        New PI/ESI, I can put you in touch with each other offline, if you would like that (no need to post contact info here). Thanks for sharing your experience, New PI, which is what I had in mind. Start the conversation. Letting the PO know there is no start-up package is worth mentioning, too. Again, your PO doesn’t want to set you up for failure, since your award is part of his/her portfolio.

  128. NewPI said

    My student got a impact score of 32 on his F32 at NIDDK. I don’t see paylines posted – does anyone know about his chances on funding?

    • NewPI said

      I mean my postdoc;)

    • writedit said

      As I said on the other forum, that could be within the funding range, though this will be for FY19, so the PO won’t know anything definite for quite some time. When the summary statement is back, consult with the PO about next steps (whether to resubmit or not in the fall). If anyone here knows F32 scores that received awards this year, that would be great to know.

      • Sori said

        Not sure if this helps, but I submitted an F31 at NIDDK in April and also just got my impact score (24). My PO said that “in the past” a score of 25 would get funded “about half the time.” He also confirmed there are no pay lines or percentages provided for Fellowships at NIDDK. he advised me to prepare for resubmission and hope that I don’t need to.

        Also, he said funding decisions will be made late July to mid-August. This was all communicated via email, and haven’t been able to get him on the phone yet, but working on it. In the meantime, would be great if you could post any updates if you learn more!

      • writedit said

        Thanks for sharing all this – you have a great PO. Best wishes for success with your application – and your training and doctoral project.

  129. Grant said

    Dear Writedit,

    I benefit from this forum a lot. This morning I received my K99 NOA. I got my score in grey area but lucky to fall in the payline for FY2018. I would like to share my application time line with people here. Hope it will be helpful.

    I also have a minor question about the salary. There is a salary cap of 75K per year in the institute, we made a budget as 75K, but NIH cut my salary as 70K. Is there any way to adjust it to the originally proposed level? Can I negotiate this with my GMS or just deal with within our department? Thank you in advance for your suggestions.

    06/27/2018 Application awarded
    06/21/2018 Award prepared
    06/20/2018 Pending administrative review
    01/24/2018 Council review completed
    10/03/2017 Scientific Review Group review completed
    06/20/2017 Scientific Review Group review pending
    06/12/2017 Application entered into system

    Thank you!
    Best

    Grant

    • writedit said

      Congratulations on the K99 (after quite a long wait)! You can certainly ask the GMS why $5K was cut from your salary. If you proposed 100% effort, then they might have a policy about not paying 100% of salary – depends on the IC. It could be too they changed their ceiling of support across the board (not just you). It’s always worth asking – you don’t risk losing anything or having more taken away. Your institution’s grant administrator might know why the salary changed, too, so you might ask there first, and then communicate with the GMS if they don’t know why the change was made.

  130. Faculty.Grants said

    Hi Writedit,

    Could you provide guidance on the types of grants that only researchers with faculty appointment are eligible to apply, versus those that are open to anyone, including postdocs and non-faculty research scientists? Many thanks!

    • writedit said

      Each FOA indicates the eligibility criteria for the PI. Usually what prevents a postdoc or non-tenure track faculty member from applying for RPGs (vs fellowship or career development awards) is their institution, though often non-tenure track applicants are also not as competitive candidates in review groups if they are permitted to apply (fewer publications, limited independence, questions about job stability/security, etc.). Postdocs are trainees rather than employees (even if they are acting in the role of staff scientist or non-tenure track faculty), so most, if not all, universities do not allow them to apply for research grants.

  131. Bob said

    Hi Writedit,

    Im in an interesting situation (but a good one)

    My ESI NCI R01 was scored at 11th percentile (FY18 payline 14th for ESI) at study section in early June. This was an A1 application with my last shot as ESI within the 13 month resubmission window.

    I just received an excellent score on an mPI R01 that was reviewed at study section at the end of June, which should be funded.

    If the mPI is awarded first will that then disqualify me from ESI consideration for the NCI R01 or is ESI status at time of review the important factor?

    I’d appreciate any help on this.

    • writedit said

      ESI status is based on your status at the time of application, so technically, even if the mPI application receives an award first, your R01 would still be considered ESI, and I have seen applicants receive two R01s in the same cycle as an ESI. ICs are flexible in their implementation of ESI policies, though, so especially if the mPI award is also at NCI and is above the 9th percentile, that might be more likely to be at risk than your ESI R01, since NCI is putting a lot of emphasis on ESI awards (if the mPI application is at or below the 9th percentile, then it should be funded though). Your PO will be aware of both competitively scored applications, so you can talk about how this will be handled at NCI (especially if both applications are there – though FY19 paylines won’t be set for quite some time still) and whether you should be looking to resubmit either application.

    • writedit said

      Oh, and congrats on the two great scores – hope you are able to pursue both projects.

      • Bob said

        Thanks for the response, the mPI is at a different IC. I was hesitant in contacting my NCI PO until the FY19 paylines are decided, until then I dont think there is much she can do.

      • writedit said

        If you think you might want to submit the 11th percentile again in October as a new (non-ESI) application, you might want to ask your PO first if you need to do so (based solely on ESI 11th percentile – you don’t need to mention the mPI application, since that might not get awarded either, so it’s not part of the resubmit equation). Your PO won’t know paylines, of course, so you don’t ask about award likelihood. My guess is she will say to submit again for insurance, but maybe not – but of course that would be wonderful news for you. Now, if you would just wait until next February or June to submit next no matter what (ie, you want to get more data, publications, etc.), then you don’t need to talk with the PO about submission strategy (unless you want an inkling of her confidence level …).

  132. Sue said

    I am a new investigator, and I Just received my score for my A0 R21 through the NIA, specific call for ADRD. My impact score was 39, percentile 28.
    The NIA payline is 28% for ADRD grants. Does the payline correspond to the impact score or the percentile? Thanks so much.

    • writedit said

      The payline is for the percentile and is inclusive (ie, up to and including 28th percentile). However, if you were just reviewed, your application will be funded in FY19, and those paylines won’t be known for some time – but will probably be the same or better based on what both houses of Congress are writing into the NIH appropriation bill.

      • Sue said

        Good news. The timeline makes sense as the committee does not meet until October. Thanks so much for your response and for this blog. As a new investigator, it is totally invaluable.

  133. Rob said

    Hi All,
    My K99 application has remained in “Pending Administrative Review” status for about a month, and I have not yet received a personal JIT request. About a month ago I talked to PO, and he was convinced that I should hear from them very soon. My question is that “is it common for an application to remain in this status this long without any word from NIH?”, And if yes, what could be a reason for that? In any event, would you recommend reaching to GMS for an update?
    Thanks

    • writedit said

      It is not uncommon to be in limbo so long, which usually occurs at two points: while ICs are awaiting passage of the federal budget and during the mad scramble at the end of the FY. You shouldn’t panic, but you could check with the GMS about getting your JIT ready (might not realize it hasn’t been requested). I assume you have any necessary regulatory approvals and training certificates in hand.

      • Rob said

        Thanks writedit

  134. NCI_K08_2018 said

    HI.
    I am so excited that finally received my Notice of Award after months of waiting and after months of checking my eRA Commons status obsessively!

    Here is my time line. Hope it helps future K awardees-

    Feb 2017- First application

    June 2017- Impact score 30

    Oct 2017- Council review completed. Summary Statement discussed with PO. Who said she cannot promise anything, doesn’t have the budget for 2018. Reapply to be safe.

    Nov 2017- Resubmission

    March 2018- Impact score 25.

    April-June 2018- No specific promises or signs of hope from PO. JIT submitted in May.

    June 29th- Council meeting.

    Jul 9 2018- Notice of Award.

    This blog has been a great source of support and camaraderie, the only place to be able to see other people facing similar problems. If a K was this long-drawn, i can only imagine how R01s are!

    Thanks writeedit!

    • writedit said

      Woohoo! Congratulations and thank you for sharing your timeline and experience. Best wishes for success with your project and the growth of your career in biomedical research.

    • EJ said

      Congrats! Do you know what was the final impact score cutoff for your cycle?

  135. Vijay Rangachari said

    My R01 was discussed by a special emphasis panel and I received an Impact score of 43. Surprisingly, there is no percentile listed on it. I am guessing because this was a new RFA, and that there is no way to make a %ile point, as it involves the data from previous two panels. But I could be wrong. First, i would like to know if my guess is appropriate or not. Second, if it is true, how are the funding decisions made based on impact score alone? I will appreciate any inputs.

    • writedit said

      RFAs do not receive a percentile because they are (almost) always one-off reviews, so no historic panels for calculating percentiles, as you note. Also, neither the score nor a percentile would necessarily reflect funding likelihood, because these decisions are made internally based both on science and scientific merit. That is, a high-scoring but scientifically interesting (to the receiving IC) application may receive an award, whereas a low-scoring but scientifically duplicative (of other funded research) or incremental proposal may not. When you receive your summary statement, talk with your PO about whether you should submit the project as a new R01 (to parent or other funding announcement). I suspect the answer will be yes for insurance, but your PO may give you an indication of programmatic enthusiasm for the science, too.

      • ADD said

        thank you so much for your insight

      • nole said

        If the applicant is a new investigator (no R01s), will that further help the chances of funding?

      • writedit said

        It depends on the IC. Some ICs only give a payline break to ESI applicants, while others still give some break to new investigators who are not ESI. You can check the IC funding policy/strategy page for clarification, or ask your PO if it is not spelled out on the IC website.

  136. I Heart Science said

    I received notice there was a change to my DP2 application. When I went into eRA Commons the only change is that now it’s in the office of the Common Fund. Is this good news or a nothingburger? As Tom Petty sang, “waiting is the hardest part.”

    • writedit said

      Any activity suggests your application is being looked at, so I would take it as a positive – unless you were previously assigned to an IC. Your PO should be able to provide some insight – it could just be some routine processing, too.

    • 2018 DP2 Applicant said

      I also received a notice about a week ago, but in my case my application was transferred from the Common Fund to an IC. Are you sure your latest assignment wasn’t to an IC, as we were all assigned to the Common Fund back in September? Have you heard of anyone getting a notice that they received the award? Common Fund decisions were supposed to occur at the end of June. Hopefully we receive some good news soon– waiting is definitely the hardest part.

      • SaG said

        I think all funded DP2s are managed by an IC (https://goo.gl/M6Qz2D).

        The OD pays for a certain number (and transfers them to an IC) and ICs have the option to pay other DP2s with their own money. So, if it was transferred to an IC it means either it will be funded or the IC might pay it with end of year funds. No guarantees of course.

      • Another DP2 applicant said

        I also received reassignment notice about 2 weeks ago but my application got reassigned to both the Common Fund and IC. It would interesting to hear if anyone got an official or unofficial notice that they’ll be getting the award. I believe we were originally told that decisions about the Common Fund funded apps will be made in early July.

      • 2018 DP2 Applicant said

        Thanks. It looks like I was also assigned to the Common Fund and an IC. I do not know of anyone who has received official or unofficial news– I’ll keep you posted if I hear anything.

      • SaG said

        Looking in NIH reporter it seems that only 1 new DP2 grant has been awarded so far in 2018. It was by NIDA. https://bit.ly/2v1lSAt Not sure what the delay is.

      • writedit said

        The NIH announces awardees all at once at the end of the FY (last year’s award start dates spanned Sept 1-30, with most on Sept 30 and only 2 prior to Sept 1), so those in contention will probably start getting JIT requests in August to be sure awards can be processed by September. NIDA has their own Avenir DP2 program (RFA-DA-18-004) separate from the Common Fund program (RFA-RM-17-006), which accounts for the award that SaG found.

      • MEJ said

        I received an informal email today stating my DP2 app will be funded. Nothing formal yet, I was told it will take some time to be processed, but the OD did contact my PO stating they intend to fund it.

        If you haven’t heard anything yet, not to worry, there is still time to hear some good news. I know some people last year didn’t find out until late August.

        Good luck!

      • writedit said

        Congratulations and best wishes for success with your research!

      • RR said

        thanks for sharing this MEJ, congratulations!! Did you get this email from OD (Ravi) ? Or your PO conveyed this to you? Also did your status change to “pending”, curious. thanks!

      • MEJ said

        Thanks RR!

        I got an email from my PO telling me that he had received an email from OD saying they intend to award my application. I believe he received this email from OD last week. It has now been assigned to NINDS for management, but will take some time to wend its way into the NINDS process.

        My status has not yet changed in eRA.

      • Another DP2 applicant said

        Congratulations MEJ!!! Very exciting!!! I am curious when did your application get reassigned to NINDS and did you get a JIT request? Thanks for sharing.

      • MEJ said

        Thank you!

        My application got reassigned to NINDS last week, and my PO also changed at that time, to the NINDS PO. I reached out to my new PO yesterday, and that’s how I found out my app was being awarded.

        I actually received a JIT request a while ago, I think at the end of May.

    • I Heart Science said

      Looking closer, I have gone from Common Fund to an IC and back to the Common Fund. Not sure what to make of that.

      • writedit said

        Hmm. You might get assigned to a different IC, if internal discussions identified a better fit … but if the IC to which you had been assigned was most appropriate, then this is less promising – but I am really not sure about the logistics of this program. The funding comes from the Common Fund, but I’m not sure if ICs have a limit on the number of DP2 awards they can administer (ie, NIH wants to spread the awards across ICs); if that is the case, it could be ICs reassign applications back to OD once they’ve picked “their” DP2 applications. If the OD really likes an application, though, I think they can find a way to have it funded. If you had a PO assignment while your application was listed at the IC, you could contact them for clarification. Otherwise, you can check with Ravi Basavappa.

      • I Heart Science said

        Thank you for your reply. I will contact Ravi and see what’s up.

  137. RFAq said

    Dear writedit; How are PO’s assigned for RFA applications? Is it always someone from the specific RFA “team”? Or someone with relevant portfolio whether in the RFA team or not? I guess what I am also asking is, with regard to your reply to Vijay above, who makes these internal RFA decisions? Thank you

    • writedit said

      Usually one PO manages an RFA initiative (or a small group, if it is a complex RFA with collaborating ICs), and this PO is named in the FOA. The PO(s) affiliated with an RFA have shepherded it through a long process of internal approval, Council approval, and OER approval of the concept (including associated $ for awards) and FOA. When awards are made, if a scientifically more appropriate PO is available, I imagine the application can be shifted to this person’s portfolio, though I suspect this varies from IC to IC. If you have a PO with whom you currently work who is not the PO for an RFA (but is in the same IC), then you can chat with your usual PO about the application, but though he/she may not have any direct input on the RFA initiative (not sure how this is handled, but you can always as your usual PO and they’ll indicate whether they have any role or information to share). Now, if your usual PO is not in the IC that issued the RFA, then you will need to communicate with the assigned RFA PO.

  138. nailbitinglyanxious said

    Hi all,

    Since the NCAB Council Meeting on 6/29 my K08 eRA commons status shows “Council review completed”. I received a JIT email from the GMS on 7/6, indicating a start date of 8/1 if funded, and submitted the JIT on 7/11. I contacted the PO and received the response: “This application is being reviewed administratively for a possible award”. The eRA commons status has not changed from Council Review Completed. Does this mean the award is still in doubt, or should I take this as a positive sign? Thank you.

    • writedit said

      This is all positive. Your status hasn’t changed because your materials are probably sitting in the queue , which is quite long at the end of the FY. Even if you don’t start on Aug 1, you could still get an award any time up until Sept 30, so just sit tight and assume the best (no news is good news in this case).

      • nailbitinglyanxious said

        Thank you for your reply and for this incredibly helpful blog.

  139. RMKV said

    Does a PI have the authority (or means) to cancel/transfer a sub-contract (co-I) issued to another institute in an R01 award? If so, i am assuming it to be cumbersome process. I will appreciate your thoughts.

    • writedit said

      Your institution is the awardee of your R01, not you, so you yourself would not be able to change anything. Your institution would need to ask the NIH for permission to change a subaward because the award is based on reviewer recommendations. If the subawardee did not want to have the contract cancelled, then I believe the burden would be on you and your institution to show why they have not fulfilled the terms of the contract (or no longer have the required expertise and/or facility-resources to perform the work as proposed) and therefore should not continue the work. If it is a standard service performed using a recognized SOP (ie, any qualified contractor could do the work) and you have a less expensive source for the exact same work, that might be an easier sell for the NIH, but I am not sure how each IC handles changing subawardees (both those who bring special expertise contributing to the actual science and those who are simply providing a third-party service). Your grant administrator at your institution can probably provide good insight on the likelihood of your being able to make the change you want; if your grants folks think you should be able to do so, then the next conversation is with the PO or GMS, depending on the reason for the change.

      • RMKV said

        great.. thanks a ton!

  140. harrindy said

    Does the starting date on my application matter? NIH website indicates that for Cycle I if council meeting is in August, the earliest starting time is Sep; if in October, it is Dec.

    In my recent R03 submission, I had the starting date to be Sep, but apparently, it should be Dec since the council meeting time is 10/2018. Will this mistake (“earlier” starting time) affect the possibility of funding?

    My impact score is 27, I have received an automatic request for JIT, the current status of my application is “council review completed.”

    Thank you.

    • writedit said

      What you put as start date is irrelevant to both when the application is funded and whether it is funded. The start date is not an expiration date (so you can be funded anytime after it), so you don’t need to worry. If you haven’t been in touch with your PO, you can ask whether you should resubmit in November (and if so, any suggestions for strategy).

      • harrindy said

        Thank you. This is already a resubmission, improved from 47 to 27. I am not sure whether I can still resubmit it. I have emailed PO. The response was that my score could have been in a fundable range in FY18, but because mine is in FY19, everything has to wait for the Congress approves the budget for FY19. It seems the approval is going take a while, like till November, is it? Does “council review completed” mean any bad news?

      • writedit said

        Aha. Well, your PO’s comment is excellent news, as FY19 should be as good or better than FY18 in terms of paylines. The NIH appropriation is in good shape, but the rest of the appropriations bill in which it resides is more contentious, but it looks as though Congress wants to get these passed before the midterm elections, which would be great news for all NIH applicants. Just remember that even when the President signs an appropriation bill, the money takes up to 2 months to filter down from HHS to the NIH ICs (not at all like direct deposit). Don’t worry about “Council review completed” – every application spends a lot of time in this status before (if selected for funding) being processed for an award (at which point the status changes to Pending and so on). Now, again, it sounds like your PO is positive, but you could certainly submit this project as a new A0 application if needed (but hopefully not).

      • harrindy said

        Dear Writedit, thanks a lot for this information. I will be patiently waiting for the approval of FY19’s budget. In the meantime, I will contact my PO about whether it is needed to submit it as a new A0. Thanks for suggesting this excellent strategy.

  141. Rob said

    Hello Writedit, I have an application in NHLBI, and I was curious why three council dates has been listed for Cycle III, while there is only one for each of Cycles I & II. For the case of 2018, the dates are:

    August 28 (grant review only)
    September 5 (Wednesday)
    October 30 (Tuesday)

    Are the applications for Cycle III shared between the last two dates?
    Thanks,

    • Rob said

      Sorry, I meant Cycle I. Cycles II and III each have one council date.

    • writedit said

      Looking at the 2017 meeting minutes, the August date will likely include a smaller than usual set of applications for consideration in FY18 (Sept 1 start date) or FY19, while Oct 30 will be the main review date for Cycle I (Dec 1 start) applications. The Sept 5 meeting is with their Board of External Experts and will focus on updates and future initiatives. However, knowing the date on which your application will be sent to Council won’t necessarily affect when you’ll learn about funding likelihood, since that depends on the status of the federal budget and whether NHLBI has received its appropriation.

      • SaG said

        Some ICs use the August review date (usually electronic) to approve grants that can be considered for funding with the previous fiscal year’s money (2018). By the time of Sept. Council it is too late and they have to wait for a 2019 appropriation.

  142. donttakenoforananswer said

    I have an R21 to NIA that was scored at the 6th percentile last October, approved by Council in January, and for which all JIT information was provided in February. I was assured by my PO in May that I did not need to plan on a resubmission, but the grant has been stuck at ‘Pending’ since that time. Emails to the GMS go unanswered. Any suggestions or advice?

  143. AP said

    I have an R01 application in NHLBI that was scored above the payline. But the PO thinks that it is an area that needs further research and that he will put my application in his “watch” list in case any funding is available towards the end of the fiscal year. Is this a good sign? Should I prepare for resubmission? Or follow up with the PO sometime this month? Thank you so much for maintaining this website.

    • writedit said

      You would be submitting in either October or November, depending on if your current R01 is an A0 or A1 application, and your PO will know the outcome by mid September, which should give you time to prepare a submission for either date (though perhaps tight for October). If you need to submit a new A0 application in October, you might want to start drafting it, recognizing that you might not need to submit. If you are looking at an A1 for November, then you can probably wait to hear from the PO, and if you need to resubmit, ask for advice on resubmission strategy to emphasize this priority area of research.

  144. PO question said

    How are POs assigned? I have an R01 application that was recently reviewed. I’d been in contact with the PO on my K01 while preparing the R01 application (the R01 is an extension/expansion of the K01) and had assumed he would be the PO on the R01, given the similarities in the projects and science. No PO is listed for this application in my Commons account, but I e-mailed the SRO after review and was told who my PO is – not the PO on my K01. Reviewing this PO’s interests and portfolio (in NIH Reporter) indicates she has a very different background and portfolio than my R01 application (e.g., she is linked with projects that include animal models and molecular genetics, whereas my project is MRI with young, high-risk children). I spoke with the PO by phone and she had some general guidance for preparing the resubmission, but her suggestions were most helpful in terms of general grantswriting, rather than the science behind the project. Is it possible to request a different PO for the resubmission? If so, who would I contact and how would I go about that? Thanks again for this incredible resource.

  145. ESI R01 Recipient said

    I was recently awarded an R01 – yay! great news! It is an MPI award that is also ESI/NI. We used a modular budget, and we had a 12% administrative cut as per NIAMS website. Is it possible to negotiate this budget cut with NIH (post NoA)? I was told by my PO that this was the across the board administrative cut. I was wondering if you have any knowledge or experience with this. Is it futile? I appreciate your help! Thanks for keeping this blog up!

    • SaG said

      My understanding is that the success rate for getting an across the board budget cut reversed is less than the success rate of getting an R01.

    • writedit said

      SaG is probably correct on the odds, but if you do want to ask your PO (especially since you’re both ESI), you would want to have specific requests and rationale for restoring the funds – not just a generic request to have the cut funds restored. If you can articulate what can’t be done as a result, you might have a case – but still a long-shot.

  146. What does a status of “Council Review Completed” mean?

    • writedit said

      It just means that your IC’s Advisory Council has met. If your status changes to this in advance of the scheduled Council meeting, it means your application was on the list sent to Council members to review and approve electronically in advance of the meeting. Council approval does not mean funding – it just means the IC Director can consider an application for funding.

  147. edta said

    Hi writedit, I have been getting very mixed comments from PO(s) and wondering what’s happening.

    It was NCCIH R01 RFA. Received not spectacular impact score so contacted PO for the re-submission plan (including how to reroute this, since the original was RFA). Reply was, ‘it’s too early but we could possibly be moved forward for further 2018/2019 funding consideration’-and was told my proposal was forwarded to another PO as the portfolio redistribution.

    Then second PO contacted me saying ‘it is out of payline and unlikely to be paid’ but ‘still considering for the further opportunity’. Agh. OK.

    Then received rather urgent request for JIT, mentioning ‘we are considering this proposal for funding (without the commitment, of course)’.
    Does it mean that they are really considering mine for funding, or just sent a carbon-copied header?

    Now council review is done and AC is mid Oct. Earliest start date is Dec. Should I consider Oct-Nov deadlines for resubmission through some other FOAs?

    • writedit said

      First, I hope you submitted your JIT. I assume they are actually considering it for FY18, if the JIT request was urgent. If your status changes to Pending, then they are definitely looking at this for FY18, and you would know the outcome by September. Your next submission would be a new (A0) submission, so you would be looking at the October 5 deadline. If you need to do a lot of work on the proposal, you might start revising – but I doubt in this case that they are asking for JIT if they aren’t reasonably sure about an award (since it is so late in the FY).

      With RFAs, the score is only one part of the decision, which is based more on programmatic interests and priorities (via internal discussion). RFA initiatives can be pretty fluid, so POs often don’t know how funding decisions will be handled (and whether any awards will be made) until the very end, so your second PO’s comments are not unexpected.

      Now, if you do submit a new application, I would suggest you talk with one or both POs about how you might strengthen the application both in consideration of reviewer comments (ie, which of their comments, based on the discussion, were of most concern to the panel – first PO probably attended study section) and to address IC priorities and interests.

      • edta said

        Yes I did submit my JIT as well as my response to the reviewer’s comments, which was requested by PO personally about two weeks ago. I also thought they might consider end-of-year funding opportunity, but was perplexed since I thought this RFA is for FY19 (earliest start date Dec 2019). Is it even possible that an RFA proposal submitted for FY19 can be funded during FY18, if they have money to be spend in FY18?

      • writedit said

        They can fund in FY18 if they have the money available now, which they might due to the late federal budget and higher (than anticipated) appropriations.

      • edta said

        I see. Then big fingers crossed! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts.

      • SaG said

        Are you an ESI? They could be trying to fund it to help make their ESI “quota” for 2018. I hear some ICs are not doing so well. YOu can guess who they are..

      • edta said

        Yes I am. I talked with the PO again-he liked the impact of the science, and told me that my proposal is in their ‘waitlist’, without clear forecast. So I will go ahead and resubmit-if anything positive happens, I can just withdraw.

      • SaG said

        Good plan. Though a decision should be made before the next R01 deadlines.

      • edta said

        Update: With no further notice from the PO, now the status has been changed to ‘pending’. Does it mean anything?

      • writedit said

        It means they are processing your application for an award (i.e., reviewing your JIT). Not a guarantee, but you probably won’t need to submit another application.

  148. Rob said

    Hello All, I learned a lot from this forum. I wanted to share the timeline for my K99 application to NHLBI here

    A1 Submission:

    08/22/2018 Application awarded.
    08/20/2018 Award prepared.
    08/01/2018 JIT requested.
    06/20/2018 Pending administrative review.
    06/14/2018 Council review completed.
    03/09/2018 SRG review completed: Council review pending.
    11/13/2017 Application entered into system

    A0 Submission:

    03/03/2017 SRG review completed: Application was Not Discussed.
    10/12/2016 Application entered into system

    Also, as a side note, you have the chance to revise your budget at the time of JIT request. In my case, they accepted the revised budget which was asking for a little more.

    • writedit said

      Woohoo! Thanks so much for sharing your timeline and tip – congratulations and best wishes for success with your project and in your career in biomedical research.

  149. bgrantsdaya said

    Dear Writedit,

    I have submitted an Administrative Supplement for RO1 which was due on Aug 6 to NCI. In the FOA it was written that earliest start date will be Sep 1. Does that mean the selected supplements may have already been notified by Program Officers? From your experience is it possible to have decision from PO and division so fast in 3 weeks?

    Thank you so much in advance

    • Bioinorganic Chemist said

      similar situation here- but submitted an administrative supplement for Alzheimer’s research in June and have not heard back. Do they inform you if you don’t get it? Can they inform you after Sept 1? Just holding out for some good news!

      • writedit said

        As I just told bgrantsdaya, administrative supplements can be paid any time up to Sept 30th (and often they are the last to be paid since ICs use these to use up leftover pockets of money throughout their appropriation and therefore wait until full grant awards are settled). But again, if you worked with your PO in advance of submitting the supplement and received encouragement to submit, you should be in good shape. If you didn’t talk with your PO in advance, you won’t know until September 30th (though you could ask in mid September, since the remaining budget situation should be pretty clear by then).

    • writedit said

      Administrative supplements do not undergo peer review but are discussed internally and can be paid up through the end of the FY, so probably POs won’t know anything definite until the supplement money runs out. However, if you had worked with your PO in advance of submitting the supplement, which you should always do, you would have a better idea of how you would fare – especially since your PO would advise you not to submit something that he/she knew wouldn’t be funded and would give suggestions for what could be funded.

  150. PJ said

    Thank you Writedit and everyone here for the helpful comments. This site has been tremendous help to me! I have just received NOA for my R01 funded by the NIA. Here is my timeline:
    09/05/2015 NOA received
    08/30/2018 Award prepared: refer questions to Grants Management Specialist.
    07/09/2018 JIT materials requested and submitted
    06/27/2018 Pending administrative review. Refer any questions to Program Official or Grants Management Specialist.
    05/23/2018 Council review completed.
    03/01/2018 Scientific Review Group review completed: Council review pending. Refer any questions to Program Official.
    10/25/2017 Scientific Review Group review pending. Refer any questions to the Scientific Review Administrator.
    10/05/2017 Application entered into system

  151. Ken said

    Dear Writedit,
    My PO said there’s a potential that my R01 (gray zone) could be funded by the end of this fiscal year, but everything is still uncertain. He asked for the response to reviewers comments (in case of any discussion at funding meeting) but did not asked for the JIT. After the funding meeting which was done last Thursday or Friday, I haven’t heard any new from him. I am wondering is there still any possibility that I will get funded. Sept. 30 is approaching and without further request of JIT, what could be the chance for my R01?

    Thanks!

    Ken

    • writedit said

      Not impossible, but it’s worth asking your PO or GMS (if assigned) if you should submit your JIT material. I would have expected the request sooner, though, with the acknowledgment that it might not lead to an award (done in advance so an award could be quickly processed as appropriate).

      • Ken said

        Thanks for your quick reply. I have contacted the PO asking after the council meeting but haven’t heard from him ever since. I am planning to submit the JIT anyway just in case that will be requested in the coming days. I could always update the JIT as many times and needed, right? Thanks!

      • Ken said

        As for the GMS and PO, I can see the contact info via eRA Commons. Is this the one I should contact? Thanks!

      • writedit said

        Yes – and you can either just submit your JIT via the automatic link or wait to hear back from them. An NIDDK R01 timeline just posted at NIH Paylines & Resources lists Council review completed on Sept 10, Pending administrative review on Sept 14, Award prepared on Sept 14 (!), and Notice of Award on Sept 20 … so an award can happen that quickly.

      • Ken said

        Thanks, I will keep my fingers crossed!

    • George said

      Which institute is your R01? and percentile sharing. I have a similar situation in NCI with 11th percentile R01 application. The council occurred in this August but no any news yet.

  152. KLP said

    Dear Write edit,
    My A1 application in the month of June (R01) received 13 % and the IC is NCI, I discussed with the PO few weeks back and sent a rebuttal letter for the summary statement, as all 3 reviewers agreed that addressed all the queries and there were no major concerns. The PO said the application is within their programmatic priority, but I have not heard from the PO yet. In commons account it shows Council Review Completed, but I do not see assignment of GMS. Do you think I should still hope for the funding or I should submit as a new application. Another question is, will this be still considered during 2019 funding year, as the budget may increase for NCI. this is stressful time for me because my tenure will be in question and the position.
    Thanks and appreciate your great work and service

    • writedit said

      If you submitted in March and were reviewed in June, your application will be funded in FY19 (December), unless NCI has the funds and programmatic urgency to make an award in FY18. Even if you requested a Sept 1 start date, the Feb/March submission is typically used for the first cycle of awards made in the following FY (FY19 in this case), so you should be fine (and your PO may be waiting to answer until after the scramble of final FY18 awards, since your application is not urgent whereas many others require the PO’s immediate attention). 

  153. KLP said

    Thank you write edit for your quick response. I understand that if the NCI budget passes through, there may be a good chance right ? It may not be a right question, in general would you suggest to wait until February 2019 cycle to submit an A0 application ?
    Thanks a lot

    • writedit said

      I would urge you to ask your PO if you should submit again at all. Best case scenario is that the PO says to sit tight. If your PO says to submit again and you can do so by October, you would be part of the last round of FY19 funding (where we know the FY19 budget will have an increase for the NIH); if you wait until February, you would be waiting for what could be a contentious FY20 budget, in which case there would probably be no rush to submit by February, due to the likely delay in the FY20 budget, if waiting until June would allow you to publish or obtain more preliminary data.

  154. Nole blood said

    I have been awarded a bridge R56 for a year for my R01. How likely is my next round of R01 will be scored and funded.. just curious…

    • writedit said

      Having the R56 does not increase your chances of funding per se, but the year of funding and time to collect more data and publish should allow you to improve the application, which in turn should increase its likelihood of being scored well and thus being considered for funding. It’s on you to do well with the year of funding, though – you don’t get a review or payline break just because you received the R56.

  155. Christina Perry said

    My proposal was reviewed in study section this summer and received a score above the institute payline, but close to it. It was recently taken to Council. In era commons the status is “council review completed.” Does this mean the proposal was not recommended for funding, because the application didn’t move into a “pending…” status?

    • writedit said

      No, every application first changes to “Council review completed”. Because your application won’t be considered for funding until FY19, it will stay that way for quite a while (so don’t worry about the status not changing again). I would suggest you ask your PO if you should resubmit in November (or submit a new application in October or February) … the PO will likely recommend that you do this for insurance, since FY19 paylines won’t be known for some time, and you don’t want to lose time waiting for a decision that may be months away.

      • Rainbow Connection said

        My current situation is similar to Christina, my proposal received a very borderline impact score and was discussed at the Sept 2018 Council, but my status is still on “council review completed”.

        The NIH spending bill was approved by Congress today and sent to the President, who confirmed yesterday he would sign the bill. How much time should I allow for NIH / my PO to figure out who gets funded?

        My current plan was to email my PO one week after the bill becomes enacted (around Oct 8th), which would still give me breathing space to resubmit by my mid-November deadline (my revisions are fairly easy). Is this a bad idea? Should I contact my PO now instead?

      • writedit said

        You should ask your PO now if you should plan to resubmit in November (but do not ask about funding chances). Your IC won’t know their final appropriation for 4-6 weeks after the bill is signed into law: the funds go first to HHS, then to NIH, then to individual ICs – with $ skimmed off at each step, and then each IC needs to first take out prior-year commitments before knowing how much is left for new awards. In other words, your PO won’t have any new information about funding likelihood until after it is too late for you to submit your A1, whereas he/she should know now whether you would want to resubmit for insurance. My guess is that the answer will be yes, to resubmit – but you can see what the PO says (if you are told not to resubmit, then you can be pretty confident about an award later in the year).

  156. DPnew said

    Dear Writedit, we received an impact score 28 on our R15 proposal. The panel summary seems very positive though some of the reviewer’s scores donot exactly correlate. We have emailed the PO about her advice but received no reply. Is there any person other than the PO who can be contacted? What is the possibility of receiving an R15 award with this score given the cutoff is 25? Thank you.

    • writedit said

      First, please ignore the criterion scores. They are not used to calculate your impact score and often do not reflect the final score because reviewers do not go back and adjust these after the discussion of your application (during which the reviewer may have been convinced to go up or down in score). Your PO will have nothing to say about the individual criterion scores (since they have no bearing), though he/she can comment on how the discussion went, if you want advice on resubmission strategies. You absolutely do not want to think about an appeal or any other argument about the criterion scores or even reviewer comments with which you disagree. Because FY18 just ended and everyone at the NIH is wrapping up that fiscal year while preparing for FY19, and a question such as yours isn’t urgent (in the greater scheme of NIH things, that is), there could be some delay in a reply as your PO triages priorities over the next week or so. There isn’t anyone else to contact, so you should sit tight and wait for the FY storm to pass. Also, your PO will have no idea about paylines or funding likelihood for another 4-6 weeks at least (that is how long it takes the appropriation to trickle down from HHS to NIH to your IC to each program area). What you can do in the meantime is send the PO a brief, single, focused query about whether you should resubmit (on Oct 25 if you can be ready by then or Feb 25 for FY20). Your PO can readily give advice on whether to resubmit; my guess is that the suggestion would be to go ahead and do so for insurance.

      • DPnew said

        Dear Writedit, thank you very much.

  157. R15 In Holding Pattern said

    I’ll leave a comment based on past and current experience. Whether your R15 will receive end of year funding when you are outside of the payline is impossible to guess and the POs will usually not comment since its a guess for them as well. I can tell you that I have had a 25 and 29 at NIAID and neither was funded. Very frustrating because the 25 just missed. Bottom line, if my R15 scores any where above the payline (last years payline if the new one isn’t posted), I resubmit without hesitation. That’s the best advice I can give based on 15+ years of R15 submission and review experience.

    • DPnew said

      Thank you very much. It would be very hard to accept if a proposal is denied even after receiving a score of 25.

    • writedit said

      Thanks so much for chiming in with your experience!

  158. namaska97@gmail.com said

    Dear Writedit, I applied for K08 (A0, NCI) this June and my impact score came back as 29. I wonder if this is fundable score. I would appreciate any advice or suggestion. Thanks.

    • writedit said

      We’ll see if anyone chimes in with recent first-hand experience with K08 scores at NCI, but you should certainly ask your PO if you should resubmit in November. Unless he/she is confident based on the current application score range, the PO will probably say yes (resubmit) since NCI won’t know about their final appropriation for another few weeks, which wouldn’t be enough time for you to resubmit, so your PO will want to be sure you have an application under review for insurance.

      I’ll add that an FY18 NCI K08 applicant reported receiving a score of 30 on their first submission and 15 on resubmission, which was funded.

  159. moxit0314 said

    Got my NCI Omnibus R03 impact score today. It is a resubmission and the impact score I got is 40 (from an impact score of 41 for initial submission). Any thought on how NCI funds those applications outside the 25 impact score payline reported

    • writedit said

      For special announcements, NCI might reach above the payline, but not for the omnibus PAs (except in exceptional cases). Because your score stayed essentially the same, program is not likely to consider payment (and your PO is not likely to advocate). If your score had dropped from 40 to 26, maybe, but essentially, the reviewers are saying this is a good but not exceptional proposal (and two different groups agree that the work is not sufficiently exciting to deserve a better score). If the problem is that they do not find the science or impact to be significant, you probably want to substantially overhaul the work proposed or focus on a different area of your science altogether. If they have a continuing concern about the approach (but not the significance), especially the scope of work (ie, overly ambitious for an R03), then you can consider specific (but still substantial) changes to increase your likelihood of a competitive score.

      • moxit0314 said

        Thanks for your quick response, I’ll wait for the summary statement. The first submission was deemed to be important in terms of significance.

  160. NINDS_Career? said

    My K99 application to NINDS was just reviewed and my Impact score was 24. This seems like a good score, but since they do not give percentiles with K99s, it is hard to know what is fundable or not. Does anyone here have any clues about what has been funded in the past?

    • writedit said

      This will be a question for your PO once you have your summary statement (also ask, if you are eligible to apply again, if you should prepare another application). Your score seems like it should be in the range considered, but it will depend on the distribution of funds and scores.

  161. TN said

    Dear writedit, thank you for the blog and it greatly helps me as a new faculty. Last week, I received the summary statement of my first-ever R15 submitted to NIH/NCI and the comments are generally positive. However, the impact score is 28 which is higher than 2018 payline (25). I would like to ask that how likely NCI funds proposals outside the fundable range? Also, as you suggested above, I will contact the PO to ask for their advice on resubmission and addressing concerns. I wonder if I should bring up my ESI status and that my state (Nevada) receives the least NIH funding nationwide. Many thanks!

    • writedit said

      Your ESI status does not officially “count” in the R15 category (and given the activity code, probably most applicants are new if not ESI), but you can reinforce this with the PO – that you are launching your research career, and funding is so critical at this stage … especially in the state with the least NIH funding (Nevada? Really? wow – wouldn’t have guessed that). You’ll need to bolster your scientific argument, too, to justify the PO’s advocating for your proposal, and he/she will need more than your applicant status and state funding status. When you communicate with your PO, be sure to get advice for a resubmission (which I suspect the PO will recommend preparing) based on the panel discussion (PO was likely there) and NCI priorities.

      • TN said

        Nevada might not be the absolutely least funded but it is consistently in bottom 5 with only $31M in 2016. Many thanks for the suggestion. I will contact the PO for suggestions, especially based on panel discussion and NCI priorities. I will let you know how it goes. Best

      • Dip Blue said

        Wow, I am also NIH/NCI R15 with impact score 28. Not lucky as far as I can tell.

      • TN said

        According to the PO, it is likely that I need to resubmit since recent paylines for R15 at NCI is 25

  162. drwasy said

    Thanks for this site–it is terrific! I just spent over an hour reading through and will recommend to my colleagues.

    My R01 was submitted 1/31/2018 to a PA and assigned to NIA. It does have an Alzheimer’s focus. It was reviewed by HSOD in June and received an Impact score=23 and percentile=6.0. I was very happy with these scores, and the summary statement was complementary with nothing that could not be easily addressed. I submitted information for JIT request when requested by my grants office.

    Council review on 9/13/2018, and emails to PO went unreplied. Then I received a request for a 1 page rebuttal letter to the summary statement, which I emailed as requested on 10/26. My status on era remains “Council review completed’. My PO remains unresponsive. I remain perplexed, worried, and wondering if I should reach out to someone else at NIA? If I need to resubmit, I will, but sure would like some guidance on how to proceed. Thanks so much!

    • writedit said

      Congratulations on the outstanding score! Given that you are within the normal payline, and well within the AD-ADRD payline, I suspect your PO is concentrating on PIs who are preparing applications and whose scores are less certain. However, this is absolutely no excuse for not replying at all, which is there job. Since your JIT is in, they will probably begin administrative review later in November, at which point your status will change to Pending administrative review. If there is a GMS assigned in your eRA Commons account, you could contact that individual to be sure nothing else is needed and for an update on the timing of your review, especially if you are interested in engaging in any pre-award spending. 

      • Linda Simoni-Wastila said

        Thanks–a great suggestion to contact the GMS. I always feel like I am ‘nagging’ the good folks at NIH. Pre-award spending would be useful, as we have a big data use request to submit.

  163. MD_PhD_Student said

    Thank you for providing an open forum for this topic! I learned so much reading through the comments. I’m a 1st yr MD/PhD and submit an F30 to NIA in August. I just received an impact score of 20 (no percentile or summary statement yet). Can I glean anything from that score with respect to my chances of receiving funds? I saw your post about paylines and I think NIA has hovered around impact of 25-28 for fellowships in recent years. I’ve contacted my PO about this and a logistical question; it seems like my proposal was assigned to NIA, NIAMS, and NIBIB. I understand my institution assignment request is only “considered” but I was a little confused about why ERA listed multiple.

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