FOEDRC Pilot and Feasibility Project

The Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center (FOEDRC) at the University of Iowa is pleased to announce another cycle of Pilot & Feasibility (P&F) Grants for studies related to diabetes and obesity.

Award recipients receive $50,000 per year in direct costs; renewable for a second year, pending satisfactory progress. Relevant information regarding eligibility and the application procedure can be found below.


All applicants must be a member of the University of Iowa faculty. Previous recipients of funding from this mechanism are not eligible. FOEDRC faculty recruits are also not eligible during the period of their receipt of FOEDRC start-up support.  P&F support is usually intended for early-stage faculty investigators, for investigators from other fields intending to bring their research expertise to diabetes-relevant research, for investigators currently working in the diabetes area whose proposed research would constitute a significantly new direction, and for clinical and basic researchers who propose a joint research project. P&F grants are intended to provide support for studies that allow an investigator to develop data sufficient to prepare an application for independent research support through external granting mechanisms.

Some examples of studies which are eligible for P&F funding are:

  • A study proposed by an early-stage investigator with a research interest in diabetes or obesity prior to securing independent grant support.
  • A study proposed by an established investigator with expertise in other areas and who wants to apply this expertise to address a question that is related to diabetes or obesity.
  • A study by an established investigator in diabetes or obesity who wants to pursue a question in a totally different area from his/her current research field.
  • A study proposed between clinical and basic investigators (new or established) to test a question of translational relevance to diabetes or obesity.

The application should not exceed two (2) pages, not including the references, lay summary and bio-sketch. It should consist of two discrete sections:

  1. Research Plan (1.5 pages): The research plan should consist of one or two clearly defined specific aims. Each of these should be described in sufficient detail that a reviewer can judge why the work is being done, how it is to be done, and how the data will be interpreted. Citations should emphasize the first two of these points. The work should be of a scope that can be accomplished in 1-2 years.
  2. Innovation and Relevance (0.5 page): Describe how the work (if successful) is innovative and likely to lead to success in a national grant competition. Describe how this proposed work is relevant to the areas of diabetes and obesity.

The application should also include the following, which are excluded from the page limitation:

  1. References: Include no more than 12 references relevant to the specific aims proposed.
  2. NIH Bio-sketch: Please include a current NIH bio sketch with an up-to-date UI appointment and promotion record, personal publication list and grant history, including pending applications
  3. Lay Description (<0.5 page): Describe the work you propose to do in terms that a person, not familiar with scientific language, can understand. Why is this important? What will we know that was not known before? Where could this lead in the future, etc?

The application must be assembled into a single PDF document that contains the requested information. Font must be in Arial 11 point or larger with ½ inch (or greater) margins. Research track faculty MUST include a letter from his/her laboratory director or departmental chair describing how this award will serve in developing an independent research program and external research funding.

The PDF should be submitted electronically to by 5:00 PM on June 30, 2018. Note that it is NOT necessary for the application to go through the Office of Sponsored Research prior to submission.

QUESTIONS: For any specific clarifications with regards to submitting a proposal and eligibility concerns, or questions about Pilot & Feasibility grants and the submission process, please contact Dr. E. Dale Abel (353-3050 or

REVIEW CRITERIA: Proposed P&F studies should present a testable hypothesis and clearly delineate the question being asked, detail procedures to be followed, and discuss how the data will be analyzed and lead to future studies.

Grants receive an internal review. Emphasis is placed on how the research might lead to new research ideas or research funding. For junior investigators, additional considerations include how this award will impact your career and the potential of the applicant to compete for independent research funding in the future. Research track faculty MUST include a letter from his/her laboratory director or departmental chair describing how this award will serve in developing an independent research program and external research funding.

Successful applicants will be asked to meet with Kathleen Barbee to propose an annual budget. The award is for $50,000 per year and is renewable for a second year** (see below). Salary for the P.I. cannot be included in the budget.

**Funded investigators will be asked to prepare a yearly progress report and present at the FOEDRC/OREI Diabetes & Obesity Talk Seminar Series. These will serve as criteria in judging whether the grant will be renewed. There is a two year limit on funding, and funding ceases if the project is successfully converted into an externally funded program. P&F cannot be used for bridge funding; they must represent a new initiative.