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Small Business Programs

NIAID welcomes entrepreneurs and small business leaders to explore grant and contract funding opportunities and engage in collaboration with NIAID. Our small business programs help bridge the gap between basic science and commercialization of new therapies, vaccines, diagnostic tests, and other technologies.

We use set-aside funds mandated by Congress to fund more than $164 million each year in NIAID small business awards. The small business programs are currently reauthorized through fiscal year 2022.

Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)

Both SBIR and STTR programs seek to stimulate technological innovation and increase private-sector commercialization of technologies developed through federal research and development (R&D) funding and other support initiatives. Learn more at Compare NIAID Small Business Programs and in the sections below.

See the NIAID list of Small Business Grant Opportunities or the PHS Small Business Contract Proposal Solicitation. For NIH-level opportunities and information, see NIH SBIR/STTR Funding.

Types of Grants Available for Small Businesses

R41/R42 – Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR)

Government-wide program that promotes R&D with the potential for commercialization at small business concerns. It differs from Small Business Innovation Research in requiring a formal collaborative relationship with a university or other non-profit research institution.

R43/R44 – Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)

Government-wide program that promotes R&D with the potential for commercialization at small business concerns.

NIAID funds SBIR (R43/R44) and STTR (R41/R42) grant applications to program announcements and program announcements with special receipt, referral, and/or review considerations according to NIAID Paylines. Applications that score beyond the payline may be selected for funding (generally in score order) depending on availability of funds.

U44 – Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Cooperative Agreement

NIAID program that supports in-depth development of R&D ideas whose feasibility has been established in Phase I and that are likely to result in commercial products or services.

SB1 – Commercialization Readiness Pilot (CRP) Program

To support follow-on awards to small businesses for technology development, testing, evaluation, and commercialization assistance for SBIR or STTR Phase II technologies or for awards to small businesses to support the progress of research, research and development, and commercialization conducted under the SBIR or STTR programs to Phase III.

SBIR Cooperative Agreement (U44) and CRP (all activity codes) applications are not funded according to NIAID Paylines. Funding depends on several factors, including technical merit, relative program priority, sufficiency of proposed budget, and available funds.
Compare NIAID Small Business Programs
Get details on NIAID SBIR and STTR program structure, which funding mechanisms we use to support small businesses, and a comparison of SBIR grants and contracts.
High Priority Areas of Interest for NIAID Small Business Program
Supports businesses pursuing research in a variety of important areas of science. See our high-priority areas of interest and associated contacts.
Small Business Grant Application Process
Follow the application process outlined here to determine eligibility, register your small business, identify funding, apply, and follow up on your application.
NIAID Small Business Program Success Stories
Read about some successful companies that have received funding from NIAID's SBIR/STTR program to help them advance their innovative technologies.
NIAID Small Business Program Team
The NIAID team is dedicated to helping small businesses. Find contact information.
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