Grants & Funding

Pilot Projects

The University of Pittsburgh CMCR (Center for Medical Countermeasures Against Radiation) is pleased to announce pilot project funding for scientists both at the University of Pittsburgh and affiliated institutions, as well as to other national research institutions (including private industry) . Funding for one, and potentially two years of support for interesting chemistry/radiation biology projects is available.

The overall goal of the Pitt-CMCR is to develop small molecule radiation protectors/radiation mitigators. Radiation protectors are agents administered prior to total body radiation exposure that provide protection. Protectors are of primary benefit in the radiation counter terrorism arena. Administration to “first responders” such as EMS personnel, police, fire department personnel, and other military and medical personnel entering a contaminated area is essential.

Radiation mitigators are agents administered after total body irradiation exposure that provide a decrease in toxicity converting a lethal irradiation dose to a sub-lethal dose or a toxic dose into one with less toxicity.

Conditions for Favorable Review of an Application:

It is essential that applicants have preliminary data available for a favorable application review. Therefore, those individuals who have no experience in radiation biology should have some interaction with their local Departments of Radiation Oncology, Nuclear Medicine, Diagnostic Radiology, or a basic radiation biology laboratory prior to submitting an application. Applications based on theoretical analysis of known radioprotectors and chemicals with plans to develop successful analogs or more potent analogs would be a good start. However, a successful applicant should translate some of the theoretical work into preliminary data. The Pitt-CMCR faculty will work with interested applicants to help secure the preliminary data through small scale collaborations with existing laboratories.

Specific questions should be referred to Joel S. Greenberger at email at

Level of Funding:

Applications will be considered at the level of $20,000 to $75,000 per year for one year, direct costs only, and may be considered for a second year renewal based upon achievement of milestones. It is highly recommended that no salary support for the principal investigator be requested since the Pitt-CMCR is looking for established investigators who wish to move into the field of radiation biology. Funding is expected to support technicians, animals, tissue culture, molecular biology reagents, and some costs for chemical synthesis and chemical testing.

  • The application should be four pages in total with one page for budget.
  • Applicants should include updated C.V. and a list of other support.
  • A cover letter explaining the interest in radiobiology and why funding is being requested to move into the field of radiation biology.

Goals of the Program:

The major goal of pilot project funding is to provide a transition for established investigators to move into radiation biology. Therefore, at the end of a one or two year funding period, applications for independent research grants will be expected — either a K-Award, R21, or in some cases an RO1 Grant.

Time of Grant Reviews:

Applications will be reviewed in the order received. Funding decisions will be made on or about January 1 and July 1 of each year. Applicants are encouraged to submit their materials prior to each of these semi-annual deadlines.