See the Glossary for more terms.
Concepts represent early planning stages for program announcements, requests for applications, or solicitations for Council's input. If NIAID publishes an initiative from one of these concepts, we link to it below. To find initiatives, go to the Opportunities and Announcements portal.
NB: Council approval does not guarantee that a concept will become an initiative.
Request for Applications
Contact: Alison Deckhut Augustine
Objective: This program will support development, refinement, and validation of computational models of the immune system through inclusion of companion immunologic experimentation. It will also support pilot projects, summer schools, and symposia to improve the application of computational modeling by the broader research community.
Description: This renewal will build on progress gained through prior solicitations, as well as through independent progress made by the broader research community in the areas of computational and systems immunology and technology development, to further advance the application of computational modeling to immunology. The FY 15 initiative will include the following components:
A separate, companion initiative will be developed to support computational model integration of existing computational models of the immune system, as well as new models developed by the grantees under this solicitation and other outside investigators during the funding period. This framework will be available to the broader research community for use in their research.
FY 15 Changes (compared to the FY 2005 and FY 2010 programs):
Contact: Michael Minnicozzi
Objective: As with the two previous Atopic Dermatitis Research Network (ADRN) initiatives, this initiative aims to understand defense mechanisms of the skin, by focusing on differences between skin of nonatopic individuals and patients with atopic dermatitis (AD). AD subjects have defects in both their immune response and skin barrier. ADRN has carefully phenotyped AD patients and normal individuals and identified at least three pairings in which one group has reduced host defense compared to the other. In each of the following sets, the first group has reduced host defense: a) severe compared to moderate or mild AD, b) AD with history of eczema herpeticum (ADEH+) compared to AD with no history of EH (ADEH-), and c) genetically filaggrin-deficient subjects versus subjects who are not genetically filaggrin deficient. The network aims to evaluate defense mechanisms in these subsets.
Based on data from the current ADRN, promising research areas to pursue include: studying the genetic and epigenetic basis of host defense abnormalities; evaluating the immune and skin barrier impairments leading to cutaneous viral (e.g., herpes simplex) and bacterial (e.g., Staphylococcus aureus) infections; and evaluating the role of the skin microbiome in host defense. Additional promising research includes evaluating the role of proteins in both the stratum corneum (filaggrin) and the tight junctions (claudin), and identifying defects in cutaneous immune responses to vaccines (both T and B cell defects).
Description: This initiative will support a network of investigators with expertise in dermatology, immunology, infectious diseases, and the genetics of AD, both in humans and in animal models of AD, as well as clinical trial and basic science expertise. The cooperation of all these investigators is necessary to make important research progress.
The proposed modification of the renewal is to emphasize following up on the most promising research results obtained by the current ADRN. These include a) the relevance and underlying mechanisms of how certain biomarkers of atopy, such as total IgE, predict cutaneous immunity; b) the role of combinations of vitamin D and PTH in modulating immunity; and c) the role of filaggrin versus claudin in cutaneous host defense.
For the published request for applications, see the February 26, 2014, Guide announcement, Consortium for Food Allergy Research (U19).
Request for Proposals
Contact: Eileen Webster-Cissel
Objective: The goal of this project is to accelerate preclinical development of a single lead adjuvant candidate for preventing human disease caused by non-HIV disease pathogens.
Description: Adjuvants stimulate innate and/or adaptive immune responses. For the purpose of this SBIR, adjuvants are defined according to the FDA as “agents added to or used in conjunction with vaccine antigens to augment or potentiate (and possibly target) the specific immune response to the antigen.” The adjuvant products targeted in this program must be developed as components of antigen-specific vaccines against infectious disease and may not be developed as stand-alone agents. Currently, only two adjuvants have been approved for use in the U.S.—aluminum hydroxide/aluminum phosphate (alum) and 4’-monophosphoryl lipid A (MPL), a component of lipopolysaccharide adsorbed to alum. Additional efforts are needed to address limitations of current vaccine adjuvants and to more fully develop the potential capabilities of adjuvants.
Last Updated February 27, 2014
Last Reviewed October 30, 2013