2019 Innovator Awards

The goal of the 2019 Innovator Award is to provide seed funding for high-quality, innovative research which potentially changes our understanding of hydrocephalus or improves treatments and outcomes

Click here for the LOI
Click here to download the Policies & Guidelines

Project Focus:
Identifying new mechanisms responsible for the development of the various types of hydrocephalus;
Identifying or testing new therapeutic targets; and
Preclinical or clinical testing of new drug therapies and other treatments.

Emphasis will be placed on innovation and potential impact of the project on hydrocephalus research and clinical outcomes. Investigators studying any etiology of hydrocephalus are invited to submit a letter of intent (LOI). There are no restrictions on the age of onset or stage of hydrocephalus that can be studied.

This award will support research in the following areas:
• hydrocephalus pathogenesis and secondary injury mechanisms;
(e.g. cellular, molecular, signaling, developmental, and genetic mechanisms)
• drug target identification and testing;
• preclinical drug development and testing;
• preclinical medical device testing;
• clinical treatment innovation, including new medical device testing*

*All applicants intending to include human subjects must indicate this in the LOI and will be contacted to determine if the project falls within the scope of this RFA.

This award will not support:
• incremental progress of an established research program or project;
• minor modifications to current treatment approaches;
• development of new animal, in vivo, or in vitro models;
(See NIH PA-18-623 for funding opportunities in this area)
• imaging studies (intervention studies using imaging as an outcome measure are allowed);
• development or testing of intracranial pressure monitors;
• development or modification of tools to advance hydrocephalus research;
(See NIH PA-18-623 for funding opportunities in this area)
• business plan development


Award Details:
This award provides short term seed funding.
• The project must be designed to be completed within the 12 month timeline.
• Proposals must be submitted for actual costs at one of two funding levels, $25,000 or $50,000.
• Total funding for this award mechanism is expected to be $200,000.
• Preliminary data is not required.
• The award provides no institutional overhead.

The final award decisions will depend on the quality of the applications received and the research priorities determined by the Hydrocephalus Association. Special consideration may be given to projects that increase diversification of HA’s research portfolio and focus on underrepresented areas of hydrocephalus research. Evaluation of cognitive and behavioral outcomes as well as research on adult forms of hydrocephalus are encouraged. The Hydrocephalus Association will accept applications from researchers based at accredited non-profit research and academic institutions throughout the world. The award provides no institutional overhead. All applications must be submitted in English. In upcoming years, the Hydrocephalus Association anticipates, but cannot guarantee, a follow-on RFA for multiyear support.


Eligibility Criteria:
To be eligible, candidates must have:
• a publication record containing research articles that are innovative and high impact;
• demonstrated the ability to independently supervise staff and research;
• completed one or more of the following degrees: MD, PhD, DSc, DO, Pharm.D, or equivalent;
• a research associate, assistant professorship, associate professorship, professorship, or any equivalent academic or non-academic position.
• signed up to be a member of the HA Network for Discovery Science. To create an account, please visit: http://hands.hydroassoc.org/.

All applicants must submit an LOI. LOIs must be submitted to research-loi@hydroassoc.org before 5:00 PM (Eastern) on May 29, 2019. LOI decisions and invitations to submit full proposals will be made in mid-June.


Application Details:
The Letter of Intent (LOI) components include:
Click here for the LOI
• A one-page summary of the project*
• Identification of the supporting institution
• Identification of three potential reviewers

*All applicants that intend to include human subjects will be contacted to determine if the project falls within the scope of the RFA.

The Full Application components include:
• Contact details and other relevant administrative information (Face Page)
• Proposal Budget (Budget)
• Biographical sketches are required for the Applicant, Co-Investigator (if applicable), and Key Personnel. Biographical Sketches should not exceed five (5) pages (BioSketch)
• A Research Plan for the proposed project, of not more than six (6) pages, that contains a summary, specific aims and hypotheses, background and significance, research design and methods, next steps, and literature cited. Note: Literature Cited does not count against the 6 page limit. (Research Plan)
• A description of the Institutional Facilities and any Consultations/Collaborations if applicable (Facilities and Collaborations)
• Applications from all candidates should also include a letter from the appropriate administrative institutional official confirming the institution’s commitment to the responsible conduct of research, the candidate’s eligibility and good standing, and that, if selected, the candidate would be able to accept the award.

All applicants must provide assurance of compliance with local research regulatory bodies and with local laws in advance of the start of research activities. Additionally, for applications using human embryonic stem cells or human tissue, the candidate must obtain appropriate Embryonic Stem Cell Research Oversight Committee (ESCRO) and human subjects research approvals in advance of the start of research activities.

Full applications are due before 5:00 PM (Eastern) on August 14, 2019. Grant finalists will be contacted in October 2019. For additional information, please contact Jenna Koschnitzky, PhD at research@hydroassoc.org or 240.483.4540.