The MRCE Developmental Projects Program is designed to provide short-term support for innovative and high risk research on biodefense and EID. The Developmental Projects Program adds significant value to the MRCE Strategic Plan by: (1) supporting new investigators in the field of biodefense and emerging infectious diseases, or supporting outstanding established investigators who are moving their research into biodefense for the first time;(2) enabling the MRCE to refine and augment current themes, or develop alternative research themes-essentially a "farm club" for the strategic projects where nascent ideas can be groomed into full-blown multi-investigator research efforts. This is key for the flexibility of the MRCE in rapidly tailoring its research efforts to new regional/national needs;(3) supporting high-risk research in new areas where 1-2 years of funding may be sufficient to determine if the idea has merit, and may be competitive for funding from other sources;and (4) expanding the breadth of the MRCE research program and bringing new institutions into the MRCE and into the biodefense effort. We propose to fund six projects annually, with each receiving up to $100,000 in direct costs/yr. No project will receive more than 2 years of funding. Projects will be selected by the MRCE Steering Committee in a competition open to all qualified investigators from Region VII and Cleveland. To ensure maximum flexibility and to guarantee that the MRCE is always funding the best research, Developmental Programs are re-competed on a yearly basis. Developmental Projects may also leave the program because they receive extramural funding, or are promoted into a Strategic Projects.

Public Health Relevance

The MRCE Developmental Projects plan is designed to identify emergent technology and new research opportunities. The key purpose of this program is to expand the scope and range of research, investigators and institutions involved in biodefense and EID research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Specialized Center--Cooperative Agreements (U54)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAI1-DDS-M)
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Washington University
Saint Louis
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