Research Funding Opportunities
PWSA (USA) Funding Opportunities for Research on Prader-Willi Syndrome
Prader-Willi Syndrome Association USA (“PWSA (USA)”) is pleased to offer
grant assistance for scientific researchers with an interest in improving the
lives of those with Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). PWSA (USA) is seeking to
fund projects for a maximum of $75,000 total for a two year grant that is aimed
at discovering and developing treatments, cures, and technologies benefiting
those with Prader-Willi syndrome.
PWSA (USA) is especially interested in supporting research projects that have
the potential for immediate and high impact to the PWS community. However, PWSA
also seeks to balance its research funding between “basic” and “applied”
research in order to seek new insights that could benefit its membership right
away as well as to elucidate the causes of Prader-Willi syndrome to spur more
potent and complete therapies in the future. While PWSA (USA) is open to
insightful grants in any subject area, the following areas are of particular
interest to our constituency at this time. Research (basic or applied) in these
areas will receive the highest priority:
- Obesity -- Obesity is the number one threat to the life
expectancy and quality of life of someone with PWS. The combination of
hyperphagia and slow metabolism result in exposure to extraordinary weight
gain and impose extraordinary stress on both the person with the syndrome
and their families. Hyperphagia is the overwhelming problem preventing
independent living by anyone with PWS. Controlling the chronic insatiable
feeling of hunger and/or extreme drive to eat and increasing the metabolic
rate are issues that are high priorities for PWSA (USA).
- Behavior/psychological issues – Even when weight is controlled,
the impact of the complex behavior and psychological issues has significant
impact on the person with the syndrome and the entire family. Potential
behavioral health interventions are a high priority with PWSA (USA).
- Respiratory -- Due to lifelong hypotonia and the complications of
obesity, individuals with PWS are at risk for pulmonary issues. Sleep apnea,
health risks due to upper respiratory infections, and aspiration are some of
the concerns that PWSA (USA) believes are worth studying.
issues, genotype/phenotype, genomics/proteomics, brain imaging and function,
biomarkers for co-morbidities.
Basic science: Most of the above issues are the result of an inherent
problem in human biology, e.g., genetic makeup, endocrine systems, neurological
pathways, or deficiencies in structure. PWSA (USA) encourages basic research
into the foundation of these systems which will elucidate the root causes of the
clinical problems and lead to practical treatments.
Grant Award Timing:
be submitted as a single electronic pdf package to: Janalee Heinemann,
firstname.lastname@example.org and to Merlin Butler, M.D., Ph.D., at
email@example.com. Please send a separate email to confirm that the file
has been received. Questions regarding the research questions
to be addressed in this RFA, the suitability of the project may also be
addressed via email to either party.
Two signed copies should be mailed
Heinemann, Director of Research & Medical Affairs
The Prader-Willi Syndrome Association (USA)
8588 Potter Park Drive, Suite 500
Sarasota, FL 34238
The first page should be signed,
scanned and included in the pdf file. Alternatively, the application can be
accompanied by an email from the administrative official authorized to sign for
the Institution stating that the grant has been reviewed and approved by the
institution's grant administration
Maximum Single Grant Allowed: $75,000
Maximum Length of Grant: 2 years (the second year funding contingent on the
timely receipt of the first year’s progress report and status)
GRANT APPLICATIONS SHOULD INCLUDE:
THE FOLLOWING ITEMS:
The suggested font is Arial, 11
1. Face Page
The face page should include the
* Title of the Project
* Principal Investigator
* Principal Investigator Contact
* Institutional Contact
Information: Name; Mailing Address; Phone Number; Fax Number; e- mail address
* Signatures: The principal
investigator should sign
Technical Abstract -
An abstract of not more than 350 words should provide an overview of the
proposed studies. The abstract should include a brief background,
objective/hypothesis, specific aims and study design.
Lay Abstract and Relevance
Statement (300 words maximum) - Provide an abstract in non-technical terms
for an informed lay person. The goal of this abstract is to communicate the
rationale and scientific objectives of the study to the non-scientific
community. The potential relevance of the proposed work to the mission of PWSA
(USA) should be stated. Explain how the completion of the proposed study will
significantly advance our understanding of Prader-Willi syndrome and/or develop
a potential new therapeutic approach for the treatment of symptoms associated
3. Budget and Justification
Budget: Provide the
amount requested, broken down by categories: personnel, supplies, equipment,
patient costs, travel, other expenses. In the Budget Justification, provide a
brief explanation of the costs in each category. Include under ‘Personnel' a
list of all of the key personnel involved in the project, the percent of their
time to be spent on the project, and a brief description of their role. Salary
for the principal investigator is permitted, but should not exceed $12,500.
Travel expenses up to $1,750 are allowed. Equipment expenses may not exceed
$3,000. PWSA (USA) requests that institutions keep indirect costs at or under
8% in order to maximize the impact of these small grants.
Period of Support:
4. Qualifications of the
Investigators (Biosketch) -- NIH style
biosketch (2-4 pages) of primary investigators of the Project
Research Plan (5 page limit)
Specific Aims: Concisely state the specific research goals
of the proposal.
Background and Significance: Explain the goals of the
research in the context of the field, emphasizing the significance of the
hypothesis to be addressed.
Preliminary Studies: Preliminary data are welcomed, but
because PWSA (USA) is particularly interested in new and innovative
research, preliminary data are not required.
Experimental Design and Methods: Provide the details of the
experimental plan that will be used to accomplish the specific aims.
Routinely used methods do not need to be described in detail; however, new
or unusual methods should be described in enough detail to allow
evaluation. Identify potential limitations/pitfalls and alternative
An email will be sent within two
working days after submission confirming that the application has been received.
If you do not receive confirmation of receipt, please contact us via email or
call 800-926-4797and ask for Janalee Heinemann .
Grant will be judged on:
The ability of the Principal Investigator and the research institution to
complete the project successfully.
The potential for the project to provide valuable and accurate insight into
an important topic area which would fulfill PWSA (USA) goals outlined above.
potential of the project to impact rapidly on the PWS community.
The reasonableness of the time and budget required given the scope
of the research and its potential significance.
The likelihood that the Project could not and would not receive funding from
alternative sources (NIH, pharmaceuticals, foundations) without pilot data
and likelihood of additional funding if the objectives of the study are