Pilot Award In Precision Imaging of Cancer and Therapy

Project Award Amount $50,000


The purpose of these grants is to support pilot studies in Precision Imaging in cancer research including pre-clinical, clinical and translational.

Projects should involve new, high-risk, high-reward collaborative research between a member of Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center (HDFCCC) and a member of the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging  (RBI) who have not previously collaborated on cancer imaging or who are establishing a new collaboration in one of the following three focus areas: (a) creating a precision 'imageome' that reflects other tumor 'omics'. (b) developing imaging approaches for monitoring immunotherapy, and (c) advancing the development of novel theranostic agents.  Applications incorporating the use of precision guided irradiation and using the new core-based microCT-Guided irradiator are also encouraged to apply. The application should aim to gather preliminary data for a future grant effort.  Junior faculty members are encouraged to apply.  The pilot project will have a budget of up to $50,000.

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.  Pilot projects are for one year. A progress report is required at the end of the funding period and one year later, identifying resulting publications and subsequent funding obtained to support the expanded/extended projects. Any resulting publication must directly acknowledge the funding agency. 

More about PICT

The Precision Imaging in Cancer and Therapy (PICT) program forms a bridge between the RBI and HDFCCC that takes advantage of natural synergies between them. It brings together basic, translational and clinical scientists in order to integrate cutting edge, multi-modality imaging into all aspects of preclinical, translational and clinical cancer research and patient care.  For further detail on PICT see: http://cancer.ucsf.edu/research/programs/pict

Eligibility requirements need to be met as of date of submission, no waivers will be accepted.

Who's Eligible:
   UCSF Faculty in any series (Ladder Rank, In Residence, Clinical X, Health Science Clinical, Adjunct) in these ranks (Assistant, Associate, Full Professors) may apply.  
Appointees to the Professional Research Series and Specialists Series may also apply.  Please note that two faculty members are required in order to apply, one from RBI and another from HDFCCC.

Who's Not Eligible: Post Doctoral Fellows are not eligible.  Instructors are not eligible.

Submission Rules

Criteria for Review/Evaluation of Applications:
Projects will be evaluated based on the quality of the proposed scientific investigation, the potential of the proposal to lead to a fully funded independent research grant, and the quality and potential of the applicant and the research team.

Selection of Awardees:
Funding decisions are made independently by each funding agency based on several factors – scientific review score, alignment of proposal to funder’s strategic goals, proposal research area of focus, and specifically called out eligibility or other requirements like membership in a center, affiliation with a specific school or relevance to a stated auxiliary topic.


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.

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, literature cited and Community Engagement component (if applicable).

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

Definition: same research topic with an amended application or research plan rather than a new research topic and new research plan.

Requirements: Please use up to one extra page to introduce your revised proposal, addressing the issues raised in the review, and any additional changes to your proposal. A new letter from the Chair is not required if the resubmission is within 2 cycles (one skipped cycle max). You will include the old letter and state your resubmission is within 2 cycles and new letter is not required. Make sure the new changes are highlighted in bold or italic font so the reviewers can easily see where and how the proposal has changed. Do NOT use track changes.

1.   P.I. Names – Two faculty members or specialists who have not previously collaborated or are establishig a new collaboration in one of the three areas of focus described above, should apply (one from RBI and one from HDFCCC).  One of the PIs must be stated on the application as the primary contact (PI1).   If funded, PI1 will be the primary contact for the award set up and management. Both PIs 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 and Community Engagement component (if applicable)).

  • Aims. Do not submit an application that describes an idea that is the same or similar to one used in a previously funded RAP grant. If it is a similar idea, describe how the new proposed research is uniquely different.
  • Feasibility: Describe what steps you are taking to ensure the proposed project can be completed within the project period for this grant (approximately 300 word max).
  • Background and Significance
  • Preliminary Studies
  • Experimental Design and Methods (include time-table)
  • Explain How This Pilot Project is Important for Your Future Funding (e.g. Lead to Major Funding, etc.)
  • Literature Cited (not included in page limit)

4.   Detailed Budget ($50,000 maximum per proposal) and please round up to the nearest thousand (i.e. instead of $49,867 list $50,000).  Use the following form: PHS 398 Form Page 4, "Detailed Budget for the Initial Period" http://grants.nih.gov/grants/funding/phs398/phs398.html
. Add the network recharge rates to your budget.  PIs are required to list their effort whether it is paid or in kind.

Allowable costs

   Allowable Not Allowable
PI Salary   X
Co-Investigator(s)   X
Post Doc Salary X  
Administrative Support   X
Supplies X  
Equipment X  
Software X  
Personal Computers   X
Mailing   X
Travel   X
Research Staff Support (e.g. SRA; Lab Technician) X  
Patient Care   X

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

*NIH base salary cap. Fully justify all requests.

General guideline: PI partial salary support should not exceed 10% of the requested award budget NOT 10% of PI salary.  An amount over 10% of the award budget must be well justified. Multiple PIs can decide how to distribute the 10% salary support among themselves (e.g., 5%/5% or 6%/4%).

  • General Automobile and Employee Liability (GAEL) can be included in the requested budget
  • 10% includes SALARY & BENEFITS
  • The award amount is DIRECT COST ONLY

6.  NIH Bio-sketch of Principal Investigator(s) and Co-Investigator(s) and UCSF Faculty Mentor(s) (if applicable) (5 pages maximum):

Use this version: Biosketch Version F. Include biosketches for all PIs of a multi-PI application, and any other key personnel such as Co-Investigator(s) or UCSF Faculty Mentor(s). In section "D. Additional Information", list the relevant recent past, planned, active, and pending proposals, including percent effort and total direct costs (annual), where possible. Include a brief discussion of any potential overlap with the current proposal. 

7.   Letters of Support: Provide a letters of support from the department chair or other unit head for each PI. 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.