NAAF Research Funding Opportunities

The National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF) funds research to find a cure or acceptable treatment for alopecia areata, supports those with the disease, and educates the public about alopecia areata. NAAF Research Grant opportunities support scientists and clinicians at various levels of their careers and in numerous aspects of the field to pursue promising research ideas and innovative projects that will advance the development or discovery of safe, effective, affordable treatments and a cure for alopecia areata. NAAF is committed to supporting seasoned experts in alopecia areata research and treatment, as well as young scientists and clinicians building careers to become high-caliber, independent researchers with an enduring focus on research relevant to alopecia areata. In addition, NAAF also provides Bridge Grants to support highly meritorious National Institutes of Health (NIH) award applicants whose alopecia areata-related projects were well-scored, but not funded. 

2018 Research Funding Cycle

Detailed application instructions may be found here which include essential information potential applicants need to know to evaluate the various award opportunities and develop a successful research proposal. Interested individuals are strongly encouraged to read this entire document before beginning any application. Applications for the 2018 award year must be submitted by 5:00 pm ET on March 30, 2018.

Important Dates

November 30, 2017 Research Funding Announcements
December 31, 2017 Online Application System Opens
January 5, 2018 Letter of Intent Due (Optional)
March 30, 2018 Full Application Due
April 2018 Merit Review Meeting
May 2018 Integration Panel Review
June 2018 Awards Announced

Grant Review Process

NAAF research grant applications undergo a two-step, single-blind review process under the guidance of a qualified scientific Chair. NAAF reviewers adhere to conflict-of-interest and confidentiality requirements that are intended to promote an unbiased review process by minimizing even the appearance of a conflict of interest, and by restricting the use of privileged application and review information. During initial merit review, teams of experienced scientific reviewers (i.e. members of the extramural research community) and patient advocates (i.e. individuals with alopecia areata, caregivers and family members), evaluate and score the technical merit and importance of research aims of applications using established review criteria. During the second level of review, conducted by the Integration Panel (IP), highly scored applications are assessed based on programmatic priorities and budget constraints.

Research Funding Priorities

NAAF strategically funds highly meritorious grants to advance research in a diverse and balanced way.  We consider applications in broad range of areas, including (1) basic research offering leads for a cure or prevention (2) translational and clinical studies offering high-impact results and immediate benefits and (3) research to quantify and qualify biological, psychosocial and economic impacts for the purpose of addressing those impacts and improving quality of life as well as ensuring swift regulatory approval and insurance reimbursement for potential treatments. NAAF has adopted criteria for evaluating highly scored grant applications for funding based on NAAF programmatic priorities to identify those that fit best within our existing research portfolio. The framework was developed by staff and reviewed by our Research Advisors and Health & Research Ambassadors. As our work progresses and we engage with a broad range of patients, caregivers, researchers, and other stakeholders, we may update and develop additional priorities for research. More iformation about funding priorities can be found in the application instructions here

In addition, NAAF conducts research summits every two years to review progress, identify opportunities to further advance research and create new directions in its funded and promoted research. NAAF will continue to provide support and leadership toward accomplishing these targeted research aims resulting from the summits to help bring effective therapies for alopecia areata to market and enhance the understanding of disease.

How to Apply

Register to create an account through NAAF’s online Grants Management portal and select the award opportunity that is right for you to begin your application. The online application system will be open in December 2017. In the meantime, application templates are available as a resource for download in the right sidebar. 

Award Descriptions and Eligibility Requirements

Research Grant

Description: The objective of this grant is to provide funds to encourage the development of new information that contributes to the understanding of alopecia areata. Consideration will be given to those projects that provide insight into new therapies. All proposals must be hypothesis generating or hypothesis testing and provide sufficient preliminary data to justify the National Alopecia Areata Foundation’s support.

Institutional Eligibility: Public or private institutions throughout the world such as universities, colleges, hospitals and laboratories; and for-profit and non-profit corporations.

Applicant Eligibility: Required: MD, DO, PhD or equivalent and faculty position or equivalent.

Terms: $100,000 maximum per year for up to two years.

Pilot and Feasibility Grant

Description: The objective of this grant is to provide funds to encourage the development and testing of new hypotheses and/or new methods in research areas relevant to alopecia areata. Proposed work must be hypothesis generating or hypothesis testing, reflecting innovative approaches to important questions in alopecia areata research or development of novel methods, and providing sufficient preliminary data to justify the Foundation’s support. Results from Pilot and Feasibility Grants should lead to the submission of applications for funding from other agencies (i.e. NIH). At the conclusion of the funding term, applicants are expected to apply for further funding by other mechanisms or from outside agencies. The award is not intended to support continuation of programs begun under other granting mechanisms.

Institutional Eligibility: Public or private institutions throughout the world such as universities, colleges, hospitals and laboratories; and for-profit and non-profit corporations.

Applicant Eligibility: Required: MD, DO, PhD or equivalent and faculty position or equivalent.

Terms: $40,000 maximum per year for one year.

Download the application template for Investigator-Initiated Awards here

Description: The objective of this award is to support scientists and clinicians working to build careers in alopecia areata research with the intention of preparing these investigators to make successful applications for NIH K or R awards and become high-caliber, independent researchers with an enduring focus on research relevant to alopecia areata.

Institutional Eligibility: Public or private institutions throughout the world such as universities, colleges, hospitals and laboratories; and for-profit and non-profit corporations.

Applicant Eligibility: Required: MD, DO, PhD or equivalent. Must not be simultaneously serving an internship or residency. Early career investigators applying for this award must be working in the laboratories of established researchers or conducting research under the mentorship of established researchers with expertise in alopecia areata and related fields. Mentors must agree to oversee and guide the research to completion.

Terms: $50,000 maximum per year for up to three years.

Download the Mentored Investigator Award application template here

Career Development (R, U) Bridge Grant

Description: The objective of this grant is to provide funding to highly meritorious alopecia areata-related National Institutes of Health (NIH) R01, R21 or U01 award applicants whose projects were well-scored by the NIH, but not funded.

Institutional Eligibility: Public or private institutions throughout the world such as universities, colleges, hospitals and laboratories; and for-profit and non-profit corporations.

Applicant Eligibility: Required: MD, DO, PhD or equivalent and faculty position or equivalent. Applicants must have been previously funded by one of the following awards: NIH R01, R21, K01, K08 or K23 (R01 Supplements are not eligible for Bridge Grants). Applicants must have applied to the NIH for an R01, R21 or U01 renewal for an ongoing project or to continue the project via new R01, R21 or U01 and received a score and funding decision within the last 6 months. Applicants must be reapplying for an R01, R21 or U01 Award from the NIH within the next two NIH Grant cycles.

Project Eligibility: Applications must be within 15 points of a fundable score for each particular grant mechanism. The original NIH project must be aligned with NAAF research priorities and thus must be directly relevant to alopecia areata.

Terms: $100,000 maximum per year for two years.

Career Development (K, F) Bridge Grant

Description: The objective of this grant is to provide funding to highly meritorious alopecia areata-related National Institutes of Health (NIH) K01, K08, K23 or F32 award applicants whose projects were well-scored by the NIH, but not funded.
Institutional Eligibility: Public or private institutions throughout the world such as universities, colleges, hospitals and laboratories; and for-profit and non-profit corporations.

Applicant Eligibility: Required: MD, DO, PhD or equivalent and faculty position or equivalent. Applicants must have received a score and funding decision on their NIH K01, K08, K23 or F32 award. Bridge funds are not intended to bridge the period between review and funding. In addition to an excellent application, applicants must be capable of becoming independent, self- directed researchers with a clear and firm institutional commitment to their career development, including a faculty position and other supporting resources.

Project Eligibility: Applications must be within 15 points of a fundable score for each particular grant mechanism. The original NIH project must be aligned with NAAF research priorities and thus must be directly relevant to alopecia areata.

Terms: $75,000 maximum per year for one year.

Download the application template for Bridge Grants here

Description: To support early career researchers interested in attending a scientific conference or meeting to present alopecia areata-related abstracts or posters. Meetings of particular interest include: the Society for Investigative Dermatology, the Montagna Symposium, the International Congress on Autoimmunity, World Congress for Hair Research, American Academy of Dermatology, and other relevant meetings in immunology, skin and hair research.

Applicant Eligibility: To be considered for this award, you must be a graduate student, postdoctoral fellow, or a newer MD and/or PhD in early stage career development. You must attend the meeting in its entirety and be presenting an alopecia areata-related abstract or poster.

Terms: Grants may be used for travel to a scientific meeting to present alopecia areata-related abstracts or posters. Travel Grants for up to $1,000 to attend domestic meetings and up to $1,800 to attend international meetings are available. Grants may be used for registration fees, return-trip transportation to the meeting, travel-associated expenses (e.g., meals, lodging), and meeting-associated expenses (e.g., poster presentation, etc.).

Deadline: Travel Grant applications and must be received by NAAF at least 30 days prior to the anticipated meeting or travel. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Download the Travel Grant application and instructions here.