Pilot/Feasibility Grants

Pilot/Feasibility Grants


The UCSF Liver Center is sponsoring an open Request for Applications (RFA) for Pilot/Feasibility Grants, which provide seed money for investigators to pursue novel and promising ideas relevant to liver biology or disease. Through this program the Center expands its research base and recruits new investigators into liver research. Pilot/Feasibility grants are one-year awards of up to $30,000. 

All funds must be used for the conduct of research. Funds can be used for salary, supplies and core services, but not for equipment or travel.Funding will begin June 1, 2017.

Current awardees cannot apply for a second year of funding. Prior awardees can submit new applications, but not until 3 years after the original award was funded.

Who is eligible to apply?

Applicants must be affiliated with UCSF or one of its partner or neighboring institutions (Gladstone Institute, BSRI, CPMC, UC Berkeley, CHORI, Stanford) and fall into one of the following categories of eligibility:

  • New investigator engaged in liver-related research without current or past NIH support (as PI)
  • Trainee investigator in liver research in a final transition to an independent career
  • Established investigator outside hepatology with a new liver-related project
  • Center member with a project representing a complete departure from prior research

What are the main review criteria?

  • Relevance of the proposal to Liver Center programs and core facilities
  • The scope of the proposal is realistic for a one-year time frame
  • Likelihood that the research will result in a new scientific focus within the Liver Center (particularly important for Category 4 applicants)
  • Likelihood that the research will result in new liver-related extramural funding and publications
  • A proposal from a new or trainee investigator will have the highest priority

What types of liver-related research are eligible?

  • Cell and molecular biology
  • Disease mechanisms and treatments/interventions
  • Epidemiology and health outcomes

What types of liver-related research are not eligible?

  • Health-related quality improvement
  • Provider and patient education about liver disease

      What is the application process?

      Applicants must first submit a letter of intent, no more than one page in length, briefly describing the background and objectives of the proposed research project. The letter must be accompanied by a biosketch and a statement justifying eligibility.  PLEASE NOTE the eligibility statement must include a paragraph indicating how the applicant intends to use the Center’s Core facilities and engage with the Center if funded.

      Applicants selected to submit a full application will be notified in early February.  Final applications are due on Friday, March 11, 2016.  Final applicants will be required to present their proposed projects in person to the Liver Center External Advisory Board on Tuesday, April 19, 2016.  Awards will begin June 1, 2016.

      First deadline for submission:

      The deadline for receipt of letters of intent (letter + eligibility statement + biosketch as a single PDF) is 5PM on December 16, 2016.  Please email letters of intent to Sandhya Adiyodi Veetil.

      Important dates and deadlines

      • Deadline for letter of intent: December 16, 2016
      • Deadline for full application (by invitation only): February 17, 2017
      • External Advisory Board Presentation: April 6, 2017
      • Award begins: June 1, 2017