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Concepts reviewed at the September 2009 NACHHD Council meeting

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Concept Review by Council

Concepts for proposed Requests for Applications (RFA) are reviewed during the Open Session of Council. These are the features of the process:

  • A brief concept description, written by the program staff proposing a grant solicitation, is posted on the Council website.
  • Dr. Alexander will present the concepts during the Open Session. Program staff will be available to answer questions if called upon but, in general, will not participate in the presentation.
  • Following brief presentation and discussion, Council members will be asked to indicate their opinion of each concept.
  • Comments, suggestions, and Council advice will be recorded by NICHD staff.

This approach to concept review:

  • Meets the NIH requirement for public presentation of concepts and the opportunity for public comment.
  • Provides a wide spectrum of expertise for the consideration of concepts, including scientific, policy, and advocacy perspectives. The process should encourage the presentation and evaluation of broad concepts, without detailed or in-depth discussion of the specific science. Such discussion, typical when concepts are reviewed by a group with more narrowly focused expertise, goes well beyond the purpose of this review. Indeed, it places those involved in a potential conflict of interest situation that would prevent them from responding to a resultant RFA should they choose to do so.
  • Enables the full Council to consider individual initiatives within the broader context of many planned initiatives, giving us the benefit of multiple perspectives in the overall planning of an NICHD research agenda.

For this meeting, two concepts were reviewed:

Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers
Learning Disabilities Research Centers


Concept Clearance by Council
September 2009
Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers

A Request for Applications is proposed entitled “Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers (IDDRC) 2010.” The proposed RFA will use the Centers award (P30) mechanism.

Purpose

This RFA is a continuation of one of NICHD’s cornerstone programs, the Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers (IDDRCs), which eligibility is open to qualifying institutions. The original IDDRCs were established by Congressional mandate in the early 1960s to provide facilities and support for research in intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD, formerly mental retardation), and develop university-affiliated facilities to train personnel to provide care for individuals with IDD. There are currently 14 funded IDDRCs located at universities and children’s hospitals throughout the country, with a focus on providing core equipment, services, and personnel to support investigators whose goal is to understand the causes of and develop treatments for IDD. Over the past 40 years, the Centers’ activities have increased this understanding dramatically, and the core services have expanded to include state-of-the-art infrastructure support in such fields as developmental neurobiology, genomics, proteomics, neuroimaging, epidemiology, biostatistics, behavioral science and clinical translational research. Since its original inception, the IDDRC program has continued to evolve and mature, with the Centers promoting collaborative, interdisciplinary projects within and between Centers and serving as focal points for IDD research and training throughout the US.

Scope

The proposed RFA will solicit applications to establish or continue an Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center that provides shared cores, resources, and facilities to promote multidisciplinary research in the field of IDD. Although the goal of the IDDRCs is provide research support to multiple investigators rather than directly fund research projects, the breadth and depth of the supported research projects is immense; in fact, many of these projects have as their funding sources other NIH Institutes such as NINDS and NIMH, and a number are supported by foundations and private research institutions. The IDDRCs have demonstrated a remarkable ability to leverage resources from their host institutions, private donors, and other sources to facilitate growth. This diversity allows the Centers to support substantially more projects and affiliates than would be possible using NICHD support alone.

Objective

The objective of this RFA is to fund Centers that will provide support and facilities for a cohesive, interdisciplinary program of research and research training in intellectual disabilities and related aspects of human development. Applicants are encouraged to develop translational and collaborative research programs that will provide infrastructure for investigators who will make substantive advances in the field of IDD.


Program Contact:

Melissa A. Parisi, M.D., Ph.D.

Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Branch

Center for Developmental Biology and Perinatal Medicine



Concept Clearance by Council
September 2009
Learning Disabilities Research Centers

A Request for Applications (RFA) is proposed entitled “Learning Disabilities Research Centers.” This proposed RFA will use the specialized research center grant (P50) mechanism.

Purpose

The purpose of this recurring RFA is to continue to stimulate transdisciplinary research examining issues related to etiology, classification and definition of, and prevention and remediation of learning disabilities impacting listening, speaking, reading, writing and mathematics with an emphasis on comorbid conditions. The P50 mechanism allows for richly integrative, multi-method approaches to examining research topics focusing on learning disabilities that are simply not feasible through standard research mechanisms.

Scope

The Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) maintains a longstanding interest in the study of normal language and reading development, learning disabilities, and disorders that adversely affect the development of listening, speaking, reading, writing, and mathematics abilities. Continuation of the Learning Disabilities Research Centers program provides a unique opportunity to continue the strong transdisciplinary research connecting behavioral, neurobiological and genetic studies of reading, writing and related learning disabilities which is difficult to facilitate through other mechanisms.

Objective

The continuation of the Learning Disabilities Research Centers would refine the classification and definition models for learning disabilities, further extend basic and translational research on learning disabilities in the area of reading and writing skill development across the lifecourse, continue dissemination of translational research to researcher and practitioners, and increase the research data directly relevant to highly diverse populations.

Program Contact:
Brett Miller, Ph.D.
Child Development and Behavior Branch
Center for Research for Mothers and Children

 

Last Updated Date: 11/30/2012
Last Reviewed Date: 11/30/2012

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