The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) this week posted a funding opportunity seeking proposals for research focused on medical therapies and diagnostics to counter radiation injury.
The focus of the solicitation is to promote science leading towards treatments for mass casualty situations, with the ultimate goal of advancement of research on treatments of short- and long-term consequences of radiation exposure for civilian populations in the event of a nuclear incident, whether intentional or accidental. Studies ranging from investigations into the mechanisms of action for a candidate medical countermeasure to advanced product development are requested.
Studies in animal models will be required to demonstrate efficacy of the medical countermeasure products. Applicants are strongly encouraged to justify the selection of their animal model, and its relevance to expected human responses. The program will support in vivo animal research to advance medical products already licensed (for other indications) or approaches in early developmental stages for any indication (including radiation). All applicants must already have a lead medical countermeasure candidate.
Concern about the threat of nuclear or radiological attacks has grown in recent years due to the increased activity of global terrorist organizations and documented illicit trafficking of radioactive materials. Further, the effects of natural disasters on nuclear power facilities, such as the Fukushima plant in Japan, highlight the need to stockpile countermeasures to treat radiation injuries in the civilian population.
NIAID’s Radiation and Nuclear Countermeasures Program places an emphasis on translational research of treatments for radiation injury, which are effective when administered 24 hours or later after exposure from an accident or intentional attack. NIAID’s program is already yielding new candidate mitigators and therapeutic agents, which are moving toward product licensure by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This funding opportunity adds to this effort.
NIAID intends to commit $4 million in FY 2013 to fund 6-8 awards under this opportunity. Full details are available in the NIH Grants Guide Solicitation Number: RFA-AI-12-023. The application deadline is October 18, 2012.