Global Cancer Pilot Award

Project Award Amount: Up to $50,000 in direct costs over one year


Cancer now accounts for more deaths worldwide than HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria combined. By 2030, the number of annual global cancer deaths is projected to reach 13.2 million, due to population growth and aging. Nearly 70% of cancer-related deaths will occur in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The purpose of these grants is to support innovative projects that address topics related to prevention, screening, diagnosis, and/or treatment of cancer in LMICs.

These pilot awards are intended to support a wide range of research, including basic science, clinical/translational science, epidemiology, social science, and behavioral science. While applications to develop capacity-building projects are allowable, this mechanism will prioritize the funding of research projects that will lead to future NIH grant proposals or other substantive extramural funding. The project must be a collaboration between a UCSF trainee or faculty member and a named investigator at an academic institution in a LMIC. A letter of support from the collaborating LMIC institution is required with the submission.

Funding decisions will be based on merit, responsiveness to this call for proposals, feasibility of completing the project in a timely manner, and availability of funds. In light of the Global Cancer Program’s aim to foster multi-disciplinary collaboration, proposals that stimulate new collaborations of scientists from diverse fields are strongly encouraged.


Eligibility requirements need to be met as of date of submission; no waivers are allowed.

Who's Eligible:

All projects require the participation of a UCSF researcher as Principal Investigator (PI).  All Faculty members in any series (including adjunct and professional research series) are eligible.  Resident, Post-Doctoral Fellow, or Clinical Fellow are eligible but, if the PI is a trainee, a faculty mentor is required.

Criteria for Review/Evaluation of Applications

Projects that develop or build on meaningful collaborations between UCSF and LMIC collaborators are encouraged. Proposals will be evaluated based on the quality of the proposed scientific investigation, the significance of the proposed research for the field of global cancer, the overall public health impact, and the potential of the proposal to lead to future successful NIH grant applications. Pilot projects that involve human subjects will require human research committee approval before funding is released.


STEP 1) Complete the electronic application form
STEP 2) Upload your proposal as a SINGLE PDF that includes all the things listed in numeric order in the instructions below. Do not include form fields in your PDF document.

Instructions for Proposal PDF

Please write your proposal following the instructions listed below and create one single PDF file. Do not include form fields in your PDF document.

Proposal Length: Maximum 6 pages, including figures and tables, excluding table of contents and literature cited.

Format Requirements: Arial font; 11 pt; minimum 0.5 inch for all margins; no appendices; include page numbers and table of contents.

1. P.I. Name(s) - If funded, PI1 will be the primary contact for the award set up and management. If the proposal has multiple PIs, both PI1 and PI2 need to meet the eligibility criteria listed for this grant mechanism. Only ONE application as PI (PI1 or PI2) is permitted per cycle.

2. Project Title

3. Proposal (maximum 6 pages, including figures and tables, excluding literature cited)


  • Background and Significance
  • Preliminary studies
  • Experimental Design and Methods (include time-table)
  • Explain how this pilot project is important for your career goals (e.g., lead to major funding, etc).

4. Detailed Budget: $50,000 maximum per proposal and please round up to the nearest thousand (i.e. instead of $49,869 list $50,000).

Use the following form: PHS 398 Form Page 4, "Detailed Budget for the Initial Period": Add the network recharge rates to your budget.



Not Allowable

PI Salary *



Co-Investigator(s) Salary



Post Doc Salary



Administrative Support












Personal Computers












Research Staff Support (e.g. RSA; Lab. Technician)



Patient Care



International Subcontracts**



Indirect costs on Subcontracts


*NIH base salary cap. Fully justify all requests. Generally PI partial salary support should not exceed 10% of the budget, anything over 10% must be well justified. Multiple PIs can decide how to distribute that 10% salary support among them (e.g., 5%/5% or 6%/4%).

5. Budget Justification: Clearly and fully justify all costs.

6. NIH Bio-sketch of Principal Investigator(s) and Co-Investigator(s) (5 page maximum). Use form with other support pages. Include active, pending, and planned proposals. Include percent effort, total direct costs (current year) and potential overlap with the current proposal. Include bio-sketch for both PIs of a multi-PI application.

7. Letter(s) of support: Provide a letter of support from the department chair or other unit head VIEW SAMPLE.  In addition, for junior investigators, department chairs/unit heads should comment on the independence of the applicant and availability of research space and other resources for the proposed research. Include the letter of support at the end of your PDF proposal and address it to the RAP Committee. If there are multiple (two) PIs, a letter of support is required for both PIs. If PIs are in the same department, the chair can vouch for both PIs in a single letter.  A letter of support from the collaborating LMIC institution is required with the submission.