OSP FO# 11-223

AGENCY: Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS)/National Institutes of Health (NIH)/National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

PROGRAM: Dimensional Approaches to Research Classification in Psychiatric Disorders (R01)

OBJECTIVES: This program provides funding to develop new ways of classifying mental disorders based on dimensions of observable behavior and neurobiological measures. The goal of the project is to identify organizing dimensions that cut across multiple disorders as traditionally defined, and to promote research according to these dimensions rather than to traditional diagnostic categories. Applications that focus primarily on validating a DSM diagnostic category will not be considered responsive to this funding opportunity. Rather, this program encourages projects that are consistent with the organizing dimensions identified by the Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) project. The RDoC project aims to support development of an integrative scientific literature that can inform future diagnostic systems which will be based on genetics, neuroscience, and psychology.

This program invites submission of research project grant applications that focus on explicating and validating the domains and their subsidiary constructs that have resulted from RDoC consensus workshops. Priority will be given to applications that evaluate relevant constructs via convergent measurement across multiple units of analysis, and applications that would elaborate aspects of the constructs that are underdeveloped. Potential applicants should read the material at the RDoC website (http://www.nimh.nih.gov/research-funding/rdoc.shtml). This site contains a detailed description of the background, rationale, draft matrix of domains and units of analysis, examples of potential research applications, and results of workshops convened to generate consensus specifications.

Examples of research projects that might be submitted to this program include, but are not limited to:

  • Evaluation of the efficacy of one or more treatments for anxiety symptoms in individuals along a distribution of hyper-reactive amygdalar responses to threat stimuli;
  • Evaluation of the association of DISC1 and DTNBP1 abnormalities with working memory performance along a dimension of anxious or anhedonic mood symptoms;
  • Comparison of anterior insula and superior temporal cortex activity along a dimension of emotional engagement in a sample with trauma history;
  • Evaluation of the relationship of subgenual cingulate activity and serotonergic function along a dimension of emotional dysregulation;
  • Evaluation of the relationship between measures of exaggerated fear response, reports of overall distress and anxiety, and chronicity of internalizing disorders.

Please see the program announcement for further program details.

DEADLINES: October 20, 2011

FUNDING INFORMATION: The NIMH intends to commit approximately $3 million in FY 2012 to fund 4-6 new grants. The number of awards is contingent upon NIH appropriations, and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications. Application budgets are not limited, but need to reflect actual needs of the proposed project. The total project period for a submitted application may not exceed five years.

Michael Kozak, Ph.D.
Division of Translational Research and Treatment Development
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 7127, MSC 9625
Bethesda, Maryland 20892-9625
Rockville, MD 20852 (for express/courier service)
Telephone: (301) 443-6471
Email: kozakm@mail.nih.gov
Web: http://grants.nih.gov/grants/guide/rfa-files/RFA-MH-12-100.html

REMARKS: NIH requires that applications to this program be submitted electronically through Grants.gov (http://www.grants.gov). After submission via Grants.gov, applications will be retrieved and processed by the NIH Commons system (https://commons.era.nih.gov/commons/index.jsp). In order to prepare a responsive application, PIs should download both the complete program guidelines (RFA-MH-12-100) and the corresponding application package from Grants.gov as well as the NIH Grants.gov Application Guide (http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/424/index.htm). PIs must also be registered Commons users.

For more information about Grants.gov and the NIH Commons, or to register as a Commons user, please contact either India Adams (adamsi@bu.edu) or A. B. Effgen (abeffgen@bu.edu) in the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) at x3-4365. In addition, please contact the OSP Assistant Director assigned to your school or department as soon as possible to coordinate submission through the Grants.gov system.

Complete program guidelines and application material may be obtained from the web site listed above or from the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP). Please distribute this notice to any faculty or staff members who might be interested in the information. For more information, please contact the OSP at X3-4365 or ospinfo@bu.edu, or visit the OSP web site at http://www.bu.edu/osp.