Funded by the:  Aging Institute of UPMC Senior Services and the University of Pittsburgh

Office of Dr. Steven Shapiro, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer

Letters of Intent due: Monday, November 13, 2017

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Purpose: The FY2018 Aging Institute Seed Grant program seeks to fund team-based, transdisciplinary, and translational pilot proposals in aging at the University of Pittsburgh that can lead to new lines of research with independent funding.

The Theme for the FY18 Seed Grant Program is Collaboration in Aging Research

This year’s Call for Letters of Intent is intended to solicit innovative proposals demonstrating research collaborations in aging and drawing from the full spectrum of disciplines across the University of Pittsburgh and UPMC from basic biology, clinical and translational approaches, epidemiological, psychosocial, health sciences, health policy and health services research. Proposals pairing basic science research with clinical/translational teams are strongly encouraged, as are proposals involving interprofessional collaborations between at least two different schools within the University of Pittsburgh or UPMC

Priority will be given to projects that:

  1. promote interprofessional and team science collaborations across the University of Pittsburgh or UPMC, or that demonstrate a collaboration between a basic and clinical scientist. Examples could include:
    • a basic and clinical scientist proposing and validating a new biological-based marker of human aging or bioinformatics;
    • geriatrics and pharmacy partnerships looking at drug combinations that might contribute to inpatient delirium in the elderly;
    • application of health or social science findings to community or clinical settings;
    • non-pharmacological treatments for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease or related dementias and their caregivers
  2. involve early-stage investigators
  3. involve investigators who wish to extend their work into the field of aging

Pilot projects are intended to permit the generation of preliminary data for a larger proposal. These projects could serve for initial tests of feasibility or to support entry into a novel area of research where there is little background information. Proposals demonstrating collaboration between investigators from different disciplines and schools, or between basic and clinical scientists will be given priority.


  1. The proposal must have either a single Principal Investigator or two co-Principal Investigators. Preference will be given for involvement of an early-stage investigator as one of the Principal Investigators. PIs should not have received an award from the Aging Institute Seed Grant Pilot Funding Program in the previous fiscal year cycle.
  2. All awarded pilot investigators and research team members must demonstrate current ethics training certification.
  3. Application is open to independent investigators at all academic levels within the University of Pittsburgh or UPMC


A total of $350,000 is available for the FY18 Seed Grant funding program

Awards will range from $25,000 – $75,000

Funds are for direct costs of the project and are restricted to use for supplies and technical support only. No funds may be used for investigator effort.

The Letter of Intent should include the following:

  • Descriptive title of proposed research
  • Name, address, and telephone number of the Principal Investigator(s)
  • Participating institutions/departments/schools
  • Potential matching funding, if applicable (matching funds are not a requirement for funding)
  • NIH-format biographical sketch of all investigators
  • One page summary to include: o The background, importance and impact of the work
    • Description of strength of collaboration
    • Specific aims with brief summary of methods and experimental design
    • Overview of plans for independent funding
    • Total amount and duration (1 or 2 years) of funding request
  • References cited

Submitted proposals will be reviewed with an emphasis on the scientific merit of the research, the overall innovative or novel nature of the project, the level of cross-disciplinary interactions, and the likelihood that the work will lead to external funding.

Each Letter of Intent will be reviewed by a committee for responsiveness and potential impact. Letters of Intent, submitted as one electronic file, are due to Taafoi Kamara at by Monday, November 13, 2017. Selected candidates will be contacted by Friday, December 8, 2017 and asked to submit a full proposal (if invited) by Monday, February 5, 2018. Final awardees will be notified Spring 2018.

The deadline for submitting a Letter of Intent is Monday, November 13, 2017

Submissions are due to Taafoi Kamara, submitted as one single electronic file, to