Opportunities for Developmental Research Proposals in Head and Neck Cancer Research

The Case Comprehensive Cancer Center is providing seed funding for highly innovative head and neck cancer-focused proposals that will generate key data for a future P50 application under the umbrella of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) "Specialized Programs of Research Excellence (SPOREs)." The P50 pilot grants will support feasibility and planning activities to build comprehensive and translational head and neck cancer research programs. All applications must propose translational research that will contribute to improved prevention, early detection, diagnosis, and/or treatment of head and neck cancers. Developmental Research Proposals need not reach a human endpoint during the proposed project period, yet must have clearly defined translational potential.

The main goal of this RFA is to stimulate novel translational research ideas in head and neck cancers. Projects focused on the Cancer Center’s catchment population are especially encouraged. Projects may focus on a wide range of research areas including prevention, early detection, diagnosis, treatment, epidemiology and/or cancer control, and are expected to have clear translational potential to advance research findings to applications relevant for clinical practice and/or healthcare settings. Transdisciplinary, inter-programmatic, and translational approaches are especially encouraged, as are new investigator proposals.

Award Description

  • Up to two (2) research projects will be funded. Total funds committed to this RFA are $100,000.
  • Up to $50,000 in direct costs for one year each with the possibility of second-year funding pending outstanding progress and development, subject to competitive review with all other pilot projects submitted at that time.
  • Research projects should demonstrate the feasibility of completion within a 1-year timeline.

Proposal Guidelines

  • InfoReady application form listing contact information for PI and faculty collaborators
  • Proposal (5 pages maximum) excluding references (29,000 characters with spaces, Arial font, 11
    • Specific aims (1 page)
    • Background and significance (1-2 pages)
    • Experimental design (2-3 pages)
  • References cited (no page limit)
  • NIH Biosketches for all faculty participants
  • Detailed budget, signed by PI's department administrator, on Case CCC budget form

Funding Criteria

  • Strong investigative teams of Case Comprehensive Cancer Center members
  • Highly innovative and impactful projects with a high likelihood of subsequent national-level funding
  • All materials to complete the project should be in-hand or readily available. For example, tissue-based research will require an approved IRB protocol and patient cohort studies must have already recruited the cohort.
  • While investigators can be collaborators on multiple applications, only one application will be accepted per lead PI.
  • All funds for shared resource facilities must use Case Comprehensive Cancer Center shared resources, when available, rather than shared resources at institutions outside Cleveland unless a specific justification for use of an outside shared resource is submitted and approved.


Completed applications are due via InfoReady Monday, March 2, 2020.

View Application Instructions


Contact casecccpilots@case.edu or John Pounardjian, 216.368.0846 with any questions.