The Pilot Project Component is designed to provide a flexible means for developing and exploring new research activities or directions, and unique opportunities that can evolve into independently funded research projects. During Years 6-10 we propose funding two pilot projects per year with a budget of about $50,000 per project. The expected duration of these projects will be 1 year;projects can be extended to two years upon successful competitive renewal. The Center Scientific Director will manage this Component. Pilot Project applications will be solicited annually from EGCRC and UCSF investigators. Each proposal will be evaluated for scientific merit, innovation, and for relatedness to the Center's overall goals by at least two members of the ACTG Program Advisory Board, the Scientific Director, and the Center Director. Recommendations for funding will be considered for approval by the Center Steering Committee. Two Pilot Projects have been proposed and awarded funding for Year 06.Project 7A (A. Kayser, Director) will examine whether the Delta Opioid Receptor (DOR) agonist, ALK33, can be a potential drug to treat alcohol intake and craving in a preclinical human trial. Experiments in human subjects are also aimed to conducted fMRI studies to determine whether the increase the connectivity between the medial prefrontal cortex and brain regions associated with reward and anxiety.
The Pilot Projects Core will oversee and monitor the progress of current Pilots. The Core will also be in charge of soliciting new proposals, managing the review process and making sure that the Pilot Projects supported by the ACTG are of high scientific quality and adhere to the overall mission of the Center as a whole.
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