The Developmental Research Program has been one of the most valuable and productive of the SPORE components. The development of innovative translational research concepts in ovarian cancer is critically dependent on the availability of flexible funding for pilot projects. The purpose of the SPORE Developmental Research Program is to encourage and develop research projects with translational potential that will reduce ovarian cancer incidence and mortality or improve survival and quality of life. Both laboratory and clinical research projects are eligible for funding, provided that they are translational in nature. A portion of the SPORE budget ($90,000 in direct costs) is allocated annually to support pilot projects. Funding is limited to $40,000 per year per project. We will provide up to an additional $10,000 from the Ovarian SPORE Institutional Matching funds in order to fund at the $40,000 per project level. At least three projects have been and will continue to be funded annually. Funding was initially f o r i year and was renewable for another year;now applicants will have the option to apply for 2 years of funding at once. Second-year funding of a 2-year proposal will be dependent on the progress made in the first year, and the proposal will compete with new applications for funding. The purpose of the Developmental Research Program is to fund promising projects by investigators of any age whose work may not focus exclusively on ovarian cancer, but who propose innovative translational studies of ovarian cancer that could become full SPORE projects or compete successfully for funding outside of the SPORE. The objectives of the Developmental Research Program are as follows: Publicize the availability of start-up funding for pilot projects in ovarian cancer translational research. Identify projects that are innovative and have significant potential for reducing ovarian cancer incidence and mortality or for improving survival and quality of life. Encourage collaborations among scientists within the SPORE and with scientists outside the SPORE environment. Help potential pilot project investigators define and articulate translational research goals and the steps required to beneficially translate research into application in humans. Select competing research proposals for funding using internal and external reviewers applying specific criteria. Provide developmental funding for investigators in the SPORE institution and scientists at other selected sites. Closely monitor and work with the Developmental Project investigators to assist them in achieving their translational research goals. Administer a flexible program in which pilot projects that demonstrate promise follow one of three courses: a) They will be funded for another year, possibly with additional support if particularty promising;b) They will be elevated to full SPORE projects;or c) Investigators will be encouraged to apply for an R01 or other peer-reviewed research support. Developmental projects that do not reach their potential will be terminated.

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National Cancer Institute (NCI)
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