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Clinical Trials and NIAID Research Career Development (K) Opportunities

If you plan to apply for a K award involving Clinical Trial Research, make sure you know which NIAID Research Career Development (K) Award funding opportunity announcement (FOA) to choose.

This page describes the process for NIAID K applicants. Other NIH institutes and centers may have different rules. Check the FOA to be sure.

Below we offer two scenarios with you as the principal investigator (PI) on a K award:

  1. You want independent K award support as the lead PI for a clinical trial.
  2. You want to apply for a K award, but aren’t planning to be the lead PI on an independent clinical trial. You may gain clinical trial research experience.

Scenario 1: Lead PI on a K-Funded Independent Clinical Trial

Two NIAID K programs include FOAs that support independent clinical trials:

This allows NIAID PS K99 and K24 applicants to apply for independent support on their K as the lead PI for a clinical trial.

Scenario 2: Gain Research Experience Through Your Mentor’s Clinical Trial

As another option, you may apply for an NIAID-supported K award and gain clinical trial research experience without proposing an independent clinical trial. Any research experience that you propose must be under the mentor’s guidance; the mentor leads the clinical trial.

To do so, apply to the “Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed” FOA versions offered for all NIAID K award programs (K01, K08, K22, K23, K24, K25, and Parent K99/R00).

For Both Scenarios, Check the FOA

Whether you choose to propose independent clinical research or not, be sure to select a FOA that allows the type of research you propose. All NIH FOAs list whether they allow clinical trials in the title and Section II. Award Information.

NIH may withdraw applications submitted to the incorrect FOA version.

More Information

Learn more on the NIAID Research Career Development (K) Awards main page.

Email your questions to

She can also advise you on your eligibility for a particular K program and whether your proposed research aligns with NIAID if you send her your NIH-formatted biosketch and Specific Aims page. Learn more at Create Biosketches and Draft Specific Aims.

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